The Flash #26 kicks off a new arc with a new creative team in writer Christos Gage and artist Neil Googe. It’s going to take a little time for me to get used the drastic artist change (and I’m going to miss those amazing splash pages from Francis Manapul) but issue shows definite promise, even if it does adopt the continuous use of the Flash’s incredibly lame yellow striping on his New 52 costume.
I’ve hated that change ever since DC first showed the design, but Manapul’s choice to show the costume’s grooves as empty except when they were occasionally filled with lightning during the Flash’s heroics helped lessen the horrific and completely unnecessary costume change. I’ll be honest, If I’ve got to put up with those stripes in every panel than this is going to be a problem.
The main story is a mix of fun villain in Spitfire (who feels like a New 52 version of Roxy Rocket to me), the serious murder of Barry’s old mentor, and the dangerous threat of samples of several deadly diseases being stolen.
That’s quite a bit for a one-shot to do, but the comic moves at a good pace and focuses on the more cerebral nature of our hero as well as bringing back “Flash Facts” to showcase different ways the hero is able to use his powers. There’s a lot here to sell me on the comic’s new direction, even if I still want Manupaul’s art back, but the consistent highlighting of that horrific yellow piping that makes it impossible for me to take the hero seriously has to go. Worth a look.