“Some hero you are, mate. But maybe Captain Boomerang can still salvage this.”
The Flash, Kid Flash, and Captain Boomerang find themselves in the wrong end of the Australian Outback in The Flash #19. They are at the mercy of the Weaver Clan, dangerous arms dealers who have developed weapons that can contain even The Flash!
Writer Joshua Williamson and artists Jesus Merino, Carmine Di Giandomenico, and Andy Owens move the story at a very brisk pace. Before you know it, the core of the story is over and Williamson and company are dropping a major reveal at the end of the issue.
In between the opening page and the major reveal, there are some deep impactful moments. Wally and Barry have a deeply emotional and touching moment. The two are able to connect on a deeper level and bring their friendship to the next level. In fact, it advances so much that Wally really speaks his mind to The Flash – he bares the harsh truth to him and doesn’t mince words.
This deep emotional moment anchors the story, but the opening pages are much too predictable. This predictability almost takes the fun out of the story – you know exactly what is going to happen to the Weaver Clan from page two. It’s a bit disappointing how transparent the plot is in the opening pages. There are also some physics issues that go completely unaddressed. How in the world does Digger Harkness come away unscathed let alone survive being dragged at Flash speed through the Australian Outback? I mean, if he was tied to a horse and dragged, he would at least be badly bruised and more than likely be on the brink of death.
While the opening scene is extremely transparent from a plot point, it’s still quite enjoyable from an artistic standpoint. The facial expressions are spot on. You can see the actual fear in Kid Flash’s face as well as the arrogance on Captain Boomerang’s. There is plenty of action with every panel, giving you a different look whether it’s from the Weaver Clan unloading their weapons or from The Flash and Captain Boomerang running for their lives.
One of the coolest scenes is an eight-panel page that takes you on a kinetic journey through each panel as you follow one of Harkness’ boomerangs. Merino guides our eyes through these panels utilizing the boomerang. It’s a really unique and fun way to showcase the weapon.
You can definitely tell when Di Giandomenico takes over for Merino. There’s a more mystic quality to the art. Di Giandomenico also makes the book more personal, zooming in on Kid Flash’s face and bringing out all of the emotions he is feeling whether it’s anger, surprise, love, or disgust.
The characterization with The Flash and Kid Flash is superb. The emotional rollercoaster Williamson and company take us on really brings the two together and showcases just how alike they really are. However, the Weaver Clan could have been fleshed out a lot more. In fact, Jesus Merino is the one who actually gives us a look at their camp and everything they are into. You don’t really get a good grasp of who they are through their dialogue. There is definitely potential and I hope they make a return.
Steve Wands’ colors are excellent. He gives us a bright colorful action scene. He’s able to emphasize The Flash’s super speed through a mix of colors. He brilliantly transitions to a more subdued and somber night time to set the stage for the emotional scene between Kid Flash and The Flash. There is also one panel that he brings to life as The Flash and Kid Flash race through the desert together. The way his colors capture the swirling motion of the sand is truly spectacular to look at.
The Flash #19 overall is a solid book. It has a very strong emotional anchor that’s frankly been a long time coming. There is a pretty huge reveal that will definitely have a pretty large impact on the upcoming “The Button” arc. The artwork is absolutely superb whether it’s facial expressions, using a boomerang to guide you through the panels, or the swirl of the desert sand. However, there were some low points with the Weaver Clan’s weak characterization and a transparent plot. It’s still a fun tale and one that has emotional payoffs.
- Strong emotional anchor
- Gorgeous artwork
- Huge reveal at the end
- Transparent plot
- Weak characterization of the Weaver Clan