Flashpoint: Reverse-Flash #1 (DC Comics)
by Scott Kolins & Joel Gomez
I’ve been enjoying both Flashpoint and the related spinoff books set in the altered DC Universe timeline, but after reading this one-shot featuring the catalyst for the event’s plot, I was puzzled. this isn’t set in the world of Flashpoint and doesn’t even seem all that connected to it, at least not directly. In the first issue of Flashpoint, we learn that the Flash’s dead mother was restored to life in the new timeline, but this comic book features the lead-up to her murder, not her resurrection. It reads more like a supplement to The Flash: Rebirth. Yes, it explains the Reverse-Flash’s motives, but it was only a few months ago that the antagonist was spotlighted in an issue of the regular Flash title. The notion of a man whose aspirations of heroism and glory are denied him by his hero is interesting, but I question if this merited yet another Flashpoint spinoff comic.
The art adorning this one-shot is unusual, and at first, I didn’t really know what I thought of it. Joel Gomez’s work here looks like a cross between the styles of Francis Manapul and Bill Sienkiewicz. The loose, exaggerated approach conveys the title character’s twisted, corrupt nature pretty well, and I actually really enjoyed the juxtaposition of the dark deeds wrought in the story and the bright and garish colors of the villain’s costume. Gomez could stand to learn that sometimes, less is more; for example, the evil grin splashed across the villain’s face at one point is too over the top. But overall, I enjoyed his unconventional artwork. 5/10