Rogues Get New Management
By: Andrew Hines
In the last year, the Scarlet Speedster's been hitting a few speed bumps (see what I did there?) From helping to plunge Central City into a full-on blackout, to getting himself, Iris West and several other stuck inside the Speed Force, he's been having a bad year. Add to that everyone in the city thinking he's dead and now being framed for murder, things just aren't going his way. Now, the Rogues are getting back together, albeit with new leadership. For the first time, the new master of the Rogues looks good in a dress. Glider's not only taking control of the Rogues, she's also putting her brother, Captain Cold out to pasture. I've always liked Barry, even though he died two years before I was born. There've been some interesting developments in the last year, but now it's just getting ridiculous. Thankfully this all leads up to Flash Annual #1 which comes out next week, along with Justice League #12, Green Lantern Annual and Superman Annual.
With Francis Manapul and Brian Buccelato rounding out a year of writing Flash, they're either getting tired or has something AMAZING up their sleeves. The pair have done a great job, not only staying true to who Barry is and distancing him from Wally a little bit, but digging deeper into his powers. The dialogue is great and fits each character pretty well. The pacing fits with a two-part story, assuming it ends with Flash Annual #1.
Manapul has done a great job over the last year of updating everyone's looks while keeping with the premise of each character. His style fits the pacing and the artwork in every panel is great. From the front cover to the last page, this is the most consistently awesome artwork in DC. I really can't think of anyone else' artwork I'd rather see in the pages of the Flash month after month. Then there's Buccelato's colors over Manapul's art. For my money, they're on par with the work and consistency of Jim Lee and Geoff Johns. Visually very different, but they do what best fits the characters and script. And to top it off, we get to see it twice in one month with next week's comic.
With this pairing, it's no wonder that there's really no end in sight for this title. They've earned themselves an "A".