So, let’s kick it off talking about what has to be the most anticipated DC event since the last DC event. But before we discuss Flashpoint #1, we’ll have to first talk about Flash #12:
The last issue of The Flash – for now – is written by Geoff Johns, with art by series regular Francis Manapul, and Flash regular Scott Kolins. It wraps up the second story arc, which was essentially just set-up for Flashpoint, full of portent, and doom, and stuff like that. Professor Zoom, the Reverse Flash, has figured out a way to age himself at will, which is a handy skill if you want to get Senior Discounts like, whenever you want.
Not only that, but Zoom also knows how to create and change the course of time at will. And though he says he can’t ever kill Barry Allen, because it would change Zoom’s own personal timeline (he only became Zoom in order to be as good – or better than – The Flash), he can do the next best thing: change everything around him. Which he does, with a bolt of dastardly lightning.
A few other bits happen, including Barry finally telling Bart Allen (Kid Flash) he’s proud of him, and the alternate universe Barry Allen who was tooling around on a sweet motorbike gets crumbled into dust. Not that that’s stopped Barry Allen from returning from the dead before.
Anyway, on to the main event:
There’s almost too much info in this issue to cover in one blog post, so we’ll give you the highlights:
Barry wakes up in a world where he has no Flash powers, and his mother is still alive (she was murdered by Zoom. Knowing that something is wrong, he heads out in search of the world’s greatest detective, Batman.
Batman, meanwhile, is callously throwing criminals into Crime Alley, in a Gotham City that looks a lot more like Sin City. Meaning Vegas, not Frank Miller’s Sin City.
Cyborg is the world’s greatest hero. He’s assembling a ragtag team of other heroes and villains, including S!H!A!Z!A!M!, which we’ll get to in a second, and is quite possibly the most annoying thing to write ever, and The Secret Seven, who are secret, and there maybe are seven of them.
S!H!A!Z!A!M! is actually five kids and a tiger, each with one of the powers of Captain Marvel, who form into a pissed off Captain Marvel and his battle tiger. This is quite possibly the best thing that’s ever been done with the Marvel family.
The reason for the assemblage? To stop Aquaman and Wonder Woman from destroying the world. Aquaman sunk all of Western Europe under the water, and Wonder Woman took over Eastern Europe, and is killing all men. They decide to do nothing, because Batman isn’t interested: he barely cares about his own life. We thought he was Vega$ Batman, but it turns out he’s actually Neitz$che Batman. Yes, you do need to keep the dollar sign in there, it’s important.
Oh, also? Batman isn’t Bruce Wayne, he’s his father, Thomas Wayne, as Barry finds out at the end of the issue. Cliffhanger!
So what to take from this? Well, not much, honestly, there’s a lot of scene setting, mainly, and I’m actually way more interested in reading the Secret Seven, Batman, and (copy, paste, never write out again) S!H!A!Z!A!M! minis. The cliffhanger, I’m curious to hear from any new readers, because it feels more like a head scratcher, or a, “Huh, that’s interesting,” than a jaw dropping finale – and if you don’t regularly read comics, not sure how much you would care.
I’m also now 50/50 on the idea that Professor Zoom isn’t the main villain of the series. He’s clearly set up as the antagonist in Flash #12, and then appears briefly to torment Barry’s Mom in Flashpoint #1. So it seems like there’s a mystery playing out there we already kind of have the answer to, and that’s a bit of a bummer.
That said, the world has been changed, and there’s always variables that may not have occurred to Zoom. Like what happened during Crisis on Infinite Earths if every superhero in existence wasn’t there to stop The Anti-Monitor? Even if it doesn’t end up happening, the idea of Flash about to set existence right in issue #5, while stopping the armies of Wonder Woman and Aquaman, just as The Anti-Monitor pops his head in to wipe the Universe clean is an exciting one. So we’ll always have this paragraph, friends.
Anyway, we’re just getting started here. I’m far more curious to read the next issue, now that we’ve set the situation up, and I guess that’s a good thing.
Last big thing that was announced? August 31st – my wedding anniversary – is officially Flashpoint Day, as DC is literally releasing only one comic on that day, Flashpoint #5.
That will actually be the second issue of Flashpoint that month, and as previously mentioned, nothing will ever be the same again after Flashpoint. I’m actually kind of curious – given that DC has stayed totally mum about the aftermath of the Event, what will happen when September solicits are released. By my count, that should happen next month, which means other than the usual blacked out covers, and “IT’S A SECRET!” solicit text, they’ll have a hard time keeping the lid on this for long.
Anyway, that gets you caught up with this week in Flashpoint! This week, Booster Gold comes crashing headfirst into a new universe, not to be confused with Marvel’s New Universe, though we’d be secretly happy if he did. Until next time, may all your Batmen be their own father!