Friday, July 29, 2005

Stupid other pullbox.

The Flash #224: Here's the thing: I hated the Flash for years. You think about him just a little bit and you realize he's pretty close to unbeatable unless he screws up, and all of his fights should really be over before they start, plus, when I was little, Flash could only do the speed of sound, meaning Batman could beat him places with a proper plane and like fifteen characters were faster than him under their own power. When your gimmick is being the Fastest Man Alive, you'd better not have Wonder Girl showing up at the scene of a crime before you. But I've been reading Johns' run here for five years now. That might be the longest I've read any title consistently ever (well, I guess Planetary's been coming out for five years, but there's only, what, twenty-three issues of that? Ultimate X-Men, oddly enough, is a close second, but I didn't wean myself off the free issues Marvel ran on their website until around the eighteenth issue), and that's really saying something. I'll do a writeup on the whole run when it ends next month, but, for now, here's the second to last issue.

If this run is remembered for nothing else, I think it'll be Zoom. Overall, the Rogues are more formidable and fleshed out (well, most of them. The memorable ones. Nothing anyone can do is ever going to put Tar Pit over, as far as I'm concerned, and Johns' weird habit of throwing a random bad guy in a prison scene kind of got old by the time we saw, like, Double Down the fifth time without knowing who the Hell he was), but Zoom is the most interesting of the bunch. Remember my complaints about Hush? Zoom was just the opposite. Hunter Zolomon kicked around for over a year before blowing up a Cosmic Treadmill and deciding he needed to teach the Flash tragedy. That's a novel motivation, something far more entertaining (not to mention logical) than envying Bruce Wayne's lack of parents (seriously, he wanted to be an orphan? That was the reason for all that nonsense?) or... actually, I've never really gotten a handle on why the Green Goblin hates Spider-Man. I guess he's just crazy. Besides, Reverse-Flash has the coolest costume ever. Shut up, I went to art school, I swear to God.

Both Zooms show up this time around, which is nice, because one's rocking the new Reverse-Flash get-up and the other one has the classic. That's really all it takes to make me happy.

Porter does a good job aping Scott Kolins' style in the flashbacks, and Zoom's method of torturing Wally is probably the first clever use of the damned silly Cosmic Treadmill I've ever seen. Overall, I think Rogue War will end up a better read in trades, but it's been a pretty good straight superhero ride for the last four months.

There's a bit with the old, dead Captain Boomerang that's bound to have some sort of insane repercussion somewhere, by the way.

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