REVIEW: ‘Dark Nights: Death Metal-Speed Metal,’ Issue 1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Dark Nights: Death Metal-Speed Metal #1

Dark Nights: Death Metal-Speed Metal #1 is written by Josh Williamson, penciled by Eddy Barrows, inked by Eber Ferreria, colored by Adriano Lucas, and lettered by Steve Wands. It is published by DC Comics. After the events of Dark Nights: Death Metal #3 Wally West races through the ruins of the DC Universe to obtain the Mobius Chair. He is helped in his exploits by Barry Allen, Jay Garrick, and Kid Flash. However, the Batman Who Laughs is hot on their heels and has a legion of Flashes from the Dark Multiverse at his fingertips!

In the same way that Dark Nights: Death Metal-Trinity Crisis serves as a love letter to DC’s various “Crisis” events, Speed Metal is a love letter to the Flash mythos-particularly Wally West. Williamson writes Speed Metal entirely from Wally’s point of view, showcasing the struggles he’s been through and his refusal to give up even in the face of overwhelming darkness. Williamson has been writing the Flash for nearly four years and utilized every aspect of the mythos during his run; Speed Metal is no different, as there’s nods to nearly every element of Flash history.

Perhaps the best thing about the one-shot is the focus on Wally’s relationship with Barry. Ever since Barry’s death in the original Crisis on Infinite Earths, Wally has struggled to define himself as The Flash. He and Barry butt heads during their run through the corrupted Earth, but ultimately Barry places his support in Wally. It feels like Williamson is metaphorically addressing the legacy of the Flash and how it all matters, no matter which Flash you’re a fan of.

Dark Nights Death Metal Speed Metal

Barrows provides the highly kinetic, brain-breaking sequences that belong in a Flash comic. Speed Metal is packed to the brim with amazing action sequences. The Flashes even get a redesign to fit the rock metal aesthetic of Death Metal‘s world; Jay Garrick sports a black vest and chain belt, while Kid Flash has silver and red armor that wouldn’t look out of place in the 90’s. Barrows also gets the chance to design a legion of evil Flashes. There’s a Joker Flash, Zombie Flash, even a version of Gorilla Grodd with the Flash’s powers!

Barrows also draws several splash pages which feature the history of the Flash. The first page recaps Wally’s adventures during the “Rebirth” era of DC Comics, while the second page catches readers up on the events of Death Metal. These sequences are eye grabbing and help sell the book for readers who aren’t following Death Metal, as well as the ones who are.

Adding to the utter insanity of the book is Lucas on colors. He gives each Flash their signature color of lightning: Barry’s is gold, Wally’s is blue, etc. With the aforementioned splash pages, he chooses bright red and yellows for the Wally page. The Death Metal page features ominous darkness literally leaking from the Batman Who Laughs’ body. It’s a neat contrast.

Dark Nights: Death Metal-Speed Metal #1 is the perfect love letter to Wally West, and a great stand alone tale that readers who aren’t invested in the Death Metal story can enjoy. Flash fans definitely have to pick this book up.

Dark Nights: Death Metal-Speed Metal #1 is available wherever comics are sold.

 

Dark Nights Death Metal Speed Metal #1
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TL;DR

Dark Nights: Death Metal-Speed Metal #1 is the perfect love letter to Wally West, and a great stand alone tale that readers who aren’t invested in the Death Metal story can enjoy. Flash fans definitely have to pick this book up.