Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Flash, Vol. 1: Move Forward by Francis Manapul


Ever since the CW has produced, The Flash, I have been hooked on Barry Allen and his friends as they adventure new territory into the unknown when it comes to his superhero abilities. I worship the show and while I do not know his true character history in the comics I have always been open minded towards reading comics about the Flash. My first encounter with Barry Allen was in "The Justice League" cartoon series and all these animated movies that have been released over the years that feature him as either a member of the JLA or his standalone film, Flashpoint. For the most part I felt indifferent when it came to this first volume.

Deep down in my gut I know I should rate this 3 stars with no questions but I have to give credit where credit is due which is the illustrations are phenomenal and I love the effort they put into the colors and the overall vibe of this series and that is why I am giving it 4 stars. I know that I want to read more of the Flash so hopefully this series will improve the further I venture myself into this universe. 

My main issue with this comic is lack of introduction and character development. I am no expert when it comes to Superheroes comics regardless whether it is DC and Marvel. As a newbie, you would think if they restarted this series all over again don't you think we should get an introduction to the character and how he got his abilities at least for the first volume or a few pages of flashbacks? Yea well the creators said screw it and jump to the action.

In one sentence they sum up Barry Allen as a Scientist for Central City Police Department who got shot by lightning and with chemicals he got the ability to run fast at the speed of light. Now he is superhero protecting Central City while discovering who is he now that he has a new identity. Oh did I forget that his parents are dead without any info as to how they died?

If you are extremely new to the Flash then I highly don't recommend it because you won't understand who are half of these characters and what are their relation to Barry or the Flash. I am fortunate enough that while the television show may differ from the comics at certain points or storylines it nonetheless stays true to the origin story so it wasn't difficult reading this comic especially after reading Flash: Rebirth. 

I won't provide any details about the plot because if you are fans of the show then this feels like a random episode where Barry is saving the day and discovers something new about his powers and the Speed force. You meet Captain Cold, his sister, Grodd, Patty Pivot, Iris, and a new character that I have never heard of before but may know his identity already.

One thing I have to comment and I do not know if it's just me but there were countless homoerotic undertones in this comic that I couldn't help but notice throughout this book. Barry has to help a long time friend who is in danger and sure enough every time they showcase a flashback I get these feelings that they were best friends but easily could pass that boundary of friendship to love. Plus the head of the Police Department is in the closet and is sleeping with Pied Piper and it's extremely clear in this book. I hope the next volume is better than this or I will quickly retire this comic series and focus on Grant Gustin.

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