Review: Flash # 3
Submitted by: Kelly Aliano, PhD, Comics News Editor
26 July 2016
This third issue of Flash within the DC Rebirth universe opens with reminder of the proliferation of individuals who are able to access the speed force. Many of these new speedsters are more committed to personal benefit from their powers than they are to helping others. “Speed City,” by writer Joshua Willamson and artist Carmine Di Giandomenico, presents how the increase in super fast folks has affected not only the Flash but the entire community around him. This book is focused on establishing the repercussions of a proliferation of speedsters, reflecting on the quintessential comic book question of whether having powers means an individual must use them and, if he or she chooses to use them, for what they should be used.
In trying to investigate a new villain group called Black Hole, Barry Allen and his new police officer partner, August, discover S.T.A.R. Labs’s newest project: training and assisting all the new speedsters that have emerged. Barry is reminded that, while none of these new people have achieved his speeds, they never asked for this “gift” either. The woman in charge of the project, Dr. Dhawan, takes Flash to meet with a new “recruit” to the Speed Force. Afterwards, they return to the lab, where Dr. Dhawan tells Barry of her plan to train all of the new speedsters, even the criminals. This ends up being a futile quest, as the temporary lock-up is broken into and Barry’s new partner is attacked, which all serves as an exciting and terrifying introduction of the new villain “Godspeed.”
Most of the book feels more like a recap of what has happened thus far since the Speed Force storm, a kind of bait-and-switch to make the final reveal all the more shocking. That being said, to spend that many pages establishing characters who may be dead or irrelevant does not seem the most engaging use of page space imaginable. Barry is still a terrific protagonist, but it would have been nice to see a bit more of him interacting with the other speedsters. The Verdict: The new villain looks incredible, but this book is clearly a transitional issue, helping to change gears from what has happened so far into the next chapter.