The Flash #24 is written by Joshua Williamson with art by Carmine Di Giandomenico & Pop Mhan. Colours are by Ivan Plascencia and Hi-Fi with letters by Tom Napolitano. You can pickup your copy of The Flash #24 at Comixology now.
“RUNNING SCARED” prelude—guest-starring Hal Jordan! Green Lantern Hal Jordan has recruited Barry Allen for a dangerous mission that only The Flash can accomplish! Unfortunately, that mission is on a hostile space station deep in the cosmos, which means leaving Kid Flash alone to defend his and Barry’s loved ones from a deadly attack by their greatest enemy…
Coming off an excellent run of issues it would be easy for The Flash to take a breather. But this is DC Comics and this is Rebirth. Even when the story is focussed more on Barry Allen’s social life there is still room for action.
Where we left the character in issue #23 girlfriend Iris West had thrown him a surprise party. Hal Jordan had turned up and Reverse-Flash was back on the scene. The complex supporting cast of The Flash has become its unique selling point during Rebirth and this issue is the pinnacle of its development.
Issue #24 runs two parallel stories: one featuring Barry and Hal; the other Wally and Iris. Hal represents the best friend figure. The confidante. There is no pretence between the two and Barry is able to lower his guard with ease. The action sequence between the two and Multiplex is the light relief in this issue.
Wally and Iris represent Barry’s past and The Flash’s future. The stories in The Flash are circling ever closer to Iris discovering Barry’s alter-ego. It’s becoming an issue for Barry to continue his romantic relationship without Iris knowing his biggest secret. The Flash and Kid Flash are no longer working together because of the divide caused by his keeping secrets.
Separating the two in this issue is a not-so-subtle representation of Barry’s crime fighting life. On the one hand there’s the metaphorically carefree time he spends with the League. On the other he carries the weight of the world on his shoulders in the form of secrets.
Williams balances out the two stories well. Both are able to develop at a similar pace. As The Flash and Lantern battle Multiplex there’s a levity to their scenes which bring the hope that this series is known for. Whilst the sequences back at the West house bring some dramatic tension on a scale different to what we’ve seen in recent issues.
There’s also a great sense of urgency to this issue. With each turn of the page there’s the fear that Iris might discover The Flash’s alter-ego. Though there is no definitive pay-off within the confines of issues #24 there’s still a great deal to enjoy. With this issue acting as the prelude to ‘Running Scared’ Williamson clearly feels this story has some legs.
Rebirth has so far stayed away from time travel in The Flash but that all seems set to change. There are also hints that this story could tie in to the ongoing mystery of how Watchmen will tie in to the DC Universe and it’s missing time.
Art in this issue is provided by the ever outstanding Carmine Di Giandomenico with a little assistance from Pop Mhan. Giandomenico can do no wrong on The Flash. His artwork is unique and striking on every panel. As always the red of Flash’s costume leaps off the page and in this issue he gets to put his stamp on Green Lantern. It would be great to see his take on other members of the Justice League.
There’s an obvious shift when Mhan takes over behind the pencils. The two aren’t overly similar in style but colourists Ivan Plascencia and Hi-Fi are able to tie the two together neatly. Mhan has a much more realist take on character design which is less striking but no less impressive.
The Flash #24 is an action-packed prelude for the next arc in the series. There’s high stakes action, high drama but never compromising on the series heart.