Will Wally West succumb to Zolomon’s scheme to fracture The Flash Family? Or will Zolomon’s scheme actually reunite the family?
THE FLASH (2016) #48 “Flash War Part 2”
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: Howard Porter
Letters: Steve Wands
Cover Artist: Howard Porter & HI-FI; variant by Francesco Mattina
Publisher: DC COMICS
What You Need to Know:
As we build towards a major confrontation between Wally and Barry, the team currently finds themselves in the 25th century with the Renegades, where Iris is set to stand trial for killing Reverse Flash in self-defense. Along the way, however, Wally was intercepted by Hunter Zolomon, who goes on to show Wally the full scope of Wally’s lost memories, including Wally and Linda Park’s lost children. Zolomon promises a way to restore the timeline.
What You’ll Find Out:
Thanks to the events in last issue, another set of memories, those of his children, has come into focus for the troubled Wally West. Zoom suggests to Wally that following the events of “Flashpoint”, when things were put back into place, not everything was done correctly, leaving some people, including Jai and Irey, trapped in the Speed Force. The only solution at hand? Destroy the Speed Force and return the world to they it was meant to be. Wally is convinced, and willing to do whatever it takes.
Back with the Renegades, it takes no time to discover that the entire retrieval of Iris was a setup to bring Wally to Zolomon, and everybody makes a mad dash for the Flash Museum to confront Zolomon and rescue Wally. The only problem? Wally doesn’t need to be rescued. Instead, he sets off through the time stream to rescue his children. Upon mentioning the children, the dormant memories in Barry and Iris are also uncovered. As Barry sets off after him, the sequence seen at the beginning of “Part 1” occurs, in which Wally pleads for Barry to help him shut down the Speed Force and then threatens that if Barry won’t help, Wally will make sure Barry never runs again. The race is on, but just setting these events into motion has already begun to erase the 25th century timeline as it currently exists, with Iris and Wallace in it!
What Just Happened?
The combination of Williamson and Porter is a force of nature. Williamson manages to capture the pain of a father whose children are in danger beautifully. Zolomon’s rhetoric is so strong that I’m even partially convinced the Speed Force needs to be shut down. And the yin to Williamson’s yang, Porter delivers stunning page after stunning page, from the layouts on down. The use of the ethereal memory panels to capture the fleeting quality of memory is quite lovely.
Final Thought: The big question we are left with following this issue is no longer who deserves the mantle of The Flash, but to what lengths will The Flash (either one) go to in order to protect the people they love? Barry, who fears the external consequences of destroying the Speed Force, has a difficult decision to make, not helped by the fact that neither of them are aware that, in the process of fighting among themselves, Iris and Kid Flash are also being put into the same danger as Jai and Irey. Will one Flash save his family at the cost of the others?
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