January 21, 2022

Gabbing Geek

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Comic Review: The Flash Volume 7

Gorilla Grodd wants the Speed Force, and he doesn't care how many humans he has to kill in order to get it.

One of my favorite DC villains is Gorilla Grodd, possibly because I am a sucker for talking apes.  He’s not human, so his reactions to things happening around him can be a nice mix of bestial rage and genius-level calculation.

Well, he’s back to make Barry’s life miserable in volume seven of the current Flash run, subtitled Perfect Storm.

When The Flash relaunched following DC Rebirth, a Speed Force storm hit Central City and temporarily gave many citizens speed powers.  A few others managed to keep theirs, but the science terrorist group Black Hole behind it all had its own plans.

Those plans come to fruition as a second Speed Force storm hits Central City, freezing most of the people in the city in place aside from the speedsters.  There’s a reason for it.  Barry’s old primate foe Gorilla Grodd is the secret benefactor behind Black Hole.  Grodd’s dying of some mystery disease that he says only the Speed Force can cure.  And to get it, he’s going to drain it from Barry.

Granted, Barry has other speedster allies, like two different Wally Wests, the Flash for the Justice League of China, and, when he gets really desperate, his old friend-turned-foe Godspeed.  And just when he was maybe getting somewhere in the general direction of forgiveness from Iris.

So, Joshua Williamson’s script was fine.  He sets Barry up as a guy with some low self-esteem who thinks people only like him because he has superspeed.  But I wasn’t sure what exactly was killing Grodd outside of some vaguely defined disease that Barry may or may not be able to cure.  Plus, most of the artwork from this trade comes from Carmine Di Giandomenico, and I wasn’t much of a fan.  The end result felt like a story that maybe wasn’t quite fleshed out enough or maybe should have been an issue or two shorter.  The book’s last issue had better artwork, and it set up for some interesting future developments between Barry and the original Wally, but this one didn’t do much for me.  Kind of a shame because I’ve been enjoying this Flash run for a while now.

7.5 out of 10 sudden ape appearances.

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