Comic Vine Review


The Flash #20 - Reverse, Part 1


Just when Barry Allen thought he'd get a moment to unwind, a killer is targeting those touched by the Speed Force. Looks like the Flash won't even be fast enough to stop the deaths.

The Good

Looks like we have a mystery on our hands. We caught a glimpse at the new Reverse Flash last issue. For some reason he's killing those touched by the Speed Force. From the little we see, it opens up the door for major problems for the Flash. Barry Allen is trying to get his life back in order after being presumed dead for a while. Even with all his speed, he might not be prepared for what he finds.

Brian Buccellato and Francis Manapul are reunited as the writers and art team on the book. As the story unfolds, you're going to want to pay close attention to every detail on each page. The two writers have been cryptic in interviews about the motives of this new Reverse Flash and it's a great feeling being able to read a comic and not being sure what's going to happen. Too often these days, the big stories get spoiled intentionally or unintentionally.

It's not just about the Flash and the new threat in town. We're seeing more on the relationship between Barry and Patty but what about Iris? Whenever she shows up you can't help but feel the awkwardness. Manapul and Buccellato know how the unwind the story elements. There's a great variety in the pacing and seeing Barry actually slow down for certain things gives the book a unique feeling. Even the smallest appearances by other characters adds to the overall feel of the book in it not just being about Barry.

Manapul's art combined with Buccellato's colors was missed the last couple issues. Seeing it all is like seeing an old friend. It hasn't been that long but the whole package of art, color and writing is what makes this book stand out from the others.

We get some great set up in the first part of this new arc. It's clear that soe big things are coming.

The Bad

It's issues like this that make you long for the days when issues contained an extra couple pages. While this is a book about a speedster and even though Barry does do some things at normal speed, it almost feels like some minor things had to be sped up a little, like Barry finding out what the nature of Albert's device was.

Gomez and Flash's interaction seemed a tad extreme. It's understandable why Gomez would react that way but having a conversation while fighting just felt a little weird.

The Verdict

Who is the Reverse Flash? What the heck does he want and why is he killing those touched by the Speed Force? That's the big question and you'll be glued to the pages as you try to figure out what he's all about. Buccellato and Manapul are back together after two issues and seeing the art, colors and writing reminds you why this is such a refreshing series. There is plenty that happens here but it feels a tiny bit short on action as it sets up the beginning of a new arc in a big way. With the new character and the tease at the end of this issue, it's going to be a long wait until next month's issue.