The “Year One” moniker has been used by DC Comics for a long time. It’s used as an origin story for a specific character in its current continuity. Characters like Batman, Superman, Green Arrow, and Nightwing have had “Year One” stories told about them. A few weeks ago, the current writer of The Flash comics announced that he would be writing a “Year One” story arc for The Flash. Since then, I patiently waited for the first issue to be released, and that day has finally come.
The Flash #70, which is published by DC Comics, is written by Joshua Williamson, illustrated by Howard Porter, colored by Hi-Fi Color, and letters by Steve Wands. Barry Allen is feeling completely helpless in his life in Central City. Working as a forensic scientist for the CCPD, Barry is constantly catching criminals. His dull life takes a turn one night when he is struck by lightning and drenched in chemicals. Barry miraculously survives but goes into a coma. After waking up, he realizes that he has super speed. Barry must now learn to control his powers before they end up hurting others or himself.
One of the few reasons I fell in love with everything that had to do with The Flash was because of his origin story. After Barry got his powers from lightning and chemicals, he decided to use his powers for good. This made a big impression on me when I was younger. This wasn’t a story about an alien from outer space or a vigilante who fought crime dressed as a bat. Barry was a normal person who was given extraordinary gifts to help others. I can’t count how many times as a kid I wished that happened to me. Which is why seeing an origin story told about my favorite hero was something I knew I had to read.
One of the highlights from this issue is from the page shown above. I’m glad that they decided to keep the idea that Barry was a fan of comic books, especially the Jay Garrick Flash comics. Williamson does a fantastic job of showing the close relationship that Barry has with his mother. He also perfectly sets up Barry’s selflessness and his desire to help those who are in trouble.
Porter’s illustrations add to the feeling of love that Barry and his mother share. The panel with the two of them hugging and the lightning appearing in the background completely mesmerized me. It makes me think that his mother is his light, the purpose for him using his powers for good. I also found the transition in the final three panels, going from light to darkness. It seems to allude to the darkness that surrounds Barry’s life once his mother is murdered.
After the events of the last issue, my anticipation for this arc grew even more. The Flash was sent back to the early days of him getting his powers to remember something he has forgotten. The mysterious figure that sent him back will surely reappear, but I’m still left with many questions. Future issues will surely go into this more and I’m excited to see how it is handled.
Overall, I had an absolute blast not only reading this issue but writing this review. I’ve been a fan of The Flash for a long time and have read a lot of Flash stories, but this might be the story I’ve ever looked forward to reading the most. The creative team has done a phenomenal job at capturing the character’s essence but also finding ways to revamp his story. I look forward to reading the rest of this arc going forward.
The Flash #70 is available for purchase now wherever comic books are sold.
The Flash #70
Overall, I had an absolute blast not only reading this issue but writing this review.