July 21, 2024

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

Noteworthy Issues: The Flash #4 (December, 2023)

Wally gets lost in a sculpture garden inside the Speed Force.

I’ve been trying to make some use of my DC Universe Infinite subscription, and that means trying work my way away from Batman and Superman all the time.  To that end, I’ve been reading, but not reviewing here, a number of older series, but aside from Wonder Woman and the various World’s Finest issues, what exactly have I been reading that’s new and writing my thoughts up here for?  Not much.

And quite frankly, this Flash series isn’t working for me.

Issue:  The Flash #4, December 2023

Writer:  Simon Spurrier

Artist:  Mike Deodato Jr

The Plot:  Wally finds fine art but nearly loses his mind.

Commentary:  On the surface, a Flash series that focuses on the Speed Force and what may or may not be inside it is fascinating.  In execution, this series has left a lot to me to be desired.  The plotting seems a bit off, and that comes mostly in how Spurrier uses dialogue.  Wally’s thoughts are fragmented and confused, perhaps appropriate for a guy whose mind probably works faster than most people, but not always easy to follow.  And while Wally is probably more appropriate for the role of “guy discovering the scarier side of the Speed Force” than Barry, this series just ain’t working for me.

I mean, the previous issue was OK when Wally had Max Mercury with him, even if Max was trapped in some lost corner of the Speed Force, but this issue has Wally in a constantly changing sculpture garden in the middle of the Speed Force while his daughter Irey and Jesse Quick take on a ramped up Mirror Master.  Is Wally trapped there and unable to help his kid?  Yes and no.  Apparently, spending time in this garden makes someone lose their memories, and that seems…well, wrong to me.  I could be all comics nerd about it, pointing out that Wally needs an anchor in the form of someone he loves to keep from being trapped in the Speed Force forever, but something about this plot development just feels wrong to me, and that’s that.

I’m not sure I needed Wally to be out there that long is the point.  It didn’t create the necessary tension for me as a reader, and it didn’t work for me.  Yes, horrible things in the Speed Force is a nice touch, but I’m probably not going to be reviewing these issues anymore even if I read more of them.  It just isn’t working for me aside from maybe Deodato’s artwork, and I don’t think he ever stays on any title for all that long.

Grade:  C