REVIEW: “The Flash,” Issue #771

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Flash #771 - But Why ThoThe Flash #771 is published by DC Comics. Written by Jeremy Adams. Art is primarily by Brandon Peterson and Kevin Maguire. But there are also guest star artists consisting of Bryan Hitch, Howard Porter, Scott Kolins, Berat Pekmezci, Max Raynor, Tom Derenick, Fernando Pasarin, and Oclair Albert. The colourist is Michael Atiyeh, and the letters are by Steve Wands. 

Wally West is trapped in time. His body has been swept into the speed force and sending him into different eras, placing him in the bodies of other speedsters. Whether it be running with dinosaurs or fighting Hitler by using the speed of Jay Garrick, Wally must find a surge in each of these periods that precedes his arrival. In the present, Barry Allen, Mr. Terrific, and Oliver Queen are working to bring him home.

In this issue, The Flash finds himself in the body of the Reverse-Flash, who has gathered with the Legion of Doom. The Legion has just witnessed him potentially kill Superman, and are eager for him to join their ranks. Lex Luthor is against the plan, and Wally is forced to play along as the bad guy. Alongside being in a headquarters full of villains, he is also on the hunt for the surge, whilst his friends are trying to rescue him.

The plot is, again, filled with fun and energy, moving at a high tempo. Each new issue of this comic has a new setting and story to explain and unfold, whilst the wider arc continues. And for 75 percent of The Flash #771, it is successful. The readers can follow the story with ease and understand the mission at hand. But then things get out of hand and the narrative loses cohesion. The pace reaches breakneck speed. The story instantly rids itself of connection and then the book ends with the reader going “huh?” These final few pages could possibly have been placed into an issue of its own, where the concept could be stretched and comprehended better.

Something that Adams successfully accomplishes in each issue is completely changing the feeling the reader gets from the characters in the different era. This issue genuinely feels like a classic comic from the Silver Age. Each of the villains has a glorious megalomaniacal voice, authentic and adjusted for each one. And the dialogue is so brilliant to read, beautifully loud and over the top. Wally’s own personality shines through more within this issue than in previous chapters. It would have been nice to see the trio in the present day do more. They have been in the same laboratory for several issues now, and Oliver Queen doesn’t appear to have stood up in that time. To see them forced into heroics could have resulted in them feeling more involved.

Part of the classic feel that the issue stems from the involvement of Maguire. Wally’s adventure gives the reader an emotional flashback to one of the artist’s epochal Justice League comics. The style is so iconic to the artist that it becomes synonymous with a time period of comics. The superb facial expressions, the ridiculous costumes, and the Flash’s movements are gorgeous in their execution. 

Peterson is great again for the scenes set in the present day, but these two aren’t the only artists involved. There is what can only be described as a jam session for artists in the last part of The Flash #771. Each illustrator involved changes the atmosphere of their pages, revealing just how much the line art can be affected by who is designing them. Whether it be Hitch or Porter, for hardcore fans their styles are instantly recognisable, drawing smiles from the reader.

Atiyeh’s colours are extremely impressive throughout the issue. They perfectly match Maguire and Peterson’s distinctly contrasting styles, changing the textures and shades to fit the right scene. The colourist’s ability to adapt between not only these two creators, but that of everyone in the jam session is jaw-dropping.

The letters are well done for the most part, but suffer sometimes from an extensive amount of dialogue. This is not necessarily the fault of Wands, but there is an abundance of word balloons on some pages that become hard to follow as the story loses cohesion.

The Flash #771 is a solid issue for three-quarters of its duration. There is constant enjoyment to be had for this part of the comic as Wally’s adventure is always giving us new opportunities. But when it starts to slip it becomes so difficult to keep up with, which is annoying at this stage in the narrative. Any cliffhanger ending loses its impact because the reader is still three pages behind. The art is the biggest selling point of this issue, full of top-class creators, but the dialogue and nostalgia trips to classic stories additionally make this book worth trying.

The Flash #771 is available wherever comics are sold.

The Flash #771
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TL;DR

The Flash #771 is a solid issue for three-quarters of its duration. There is constant enjoyment to be had for this part of the comic as Wally’s adventure is always giving us new opportunities. But when it starts to slip it becomes so difficult to keep up with, which is annoying at this stage in the narrative. Any cliffhanger ending loses its impact because the reader is still three pages behind. The art is the biggest selling point of this issue, full of top-class creators, but the dialogue and nostalgia trips to classic stories additionally make this book worth trying.