“…I’m sure it’ll go by faster than you think.”

Joshua Williamson has been writing The Flash for quite some time. He’s introduced interesting new villains, new perspectives on the speed force, and somehow made it entertaining. The time has gone by much faster than readers probably thought. The first mentions of Godspeed were a couple of years ago now. An exciting new hero now seems like another veteran.

Unfortunately, Godspeed is one of the few problems with the issue. The inevitability of his villainy is just as obvious as the meeting that takes places on the cover of the comic, which is the real point of the issue. West meets West in one of the most emotional reunions and moments of the entire Rebirth era. Williamson doesn’t try to cloud his story with terror or conflict. He knows what fans want to read. It’s a beautiful and heartwarming scene that ends up having serious implications for the DC world-at-large.

The Flash Preview Page - Art by Christian Duce - DC Comics

The Flash Preview Page – Art by Christian Duce – DC Comics

The art is also just as bright and lively as the story. Matching the lighthearted tone that Williamson sets early on. This is a story about reunions and redemption. About setting things right. The world of Central City has gone through a lot lately. Luckily, they have more than a few speedsters who are looking to put the city back together in The Flash #45.

“That’s an easy fix for a bunch of speedsters.”

One of the tropes of comics can be the quick and easy recovery any city goes through after a major battle. But when it comes to Central City, it makes sense! The Speedsters are helping to put their home and neighborhood back together. But not just the buildings and infrastructure. Barry Allen is about helping people. Meena Dhawan may not want help…yet. But that’s never stopped Barry before. This issue is about putting people back together. While Meena does get some focus, the central point of the issue is one of the most famous relationships in comics.

Finally, after quite some time, Wally West is reintroduced to Iris West. It’s awkward and difficult, like any reunion should be. But when the two finally break past the barrier, and Iris recovers some kind of memory, readers get the emotional moment they’ve been waiting for. With an unsurprising yet exciting ending that has some major implications for the world of the Speed Force. But that’s another story.

The Flash Preview Page - Art by Christian Duce - DC Comics

The Flash Preview Page – Art by Christian Duce – DC Comics

Meena may one day have a bigger part to play in the story. She may one day redeem herself for her actions and her demeanor against Barry. Believe it or not, he manages to help people with the Speed Force. But writer Joshua Williamson is planting the seeds for her eventual return. A nice plant hidden in the emotional reunion of the West family.

Unfortunately, Godspeed is a particular hangup in the issue. He doesn’t get many pages, but those that he do go exactly how the reader will think. Williamson makes him just another villain, once again. Disappointing, but not enough to keep The Flash #45 from being a great read.

“I was worried you would see Barry Allen as…nothing.”

The Flash has always been a particularly colorful comic. Wearing red and yellow will do that to a superhero. So it makes sense that The Flash #45 is one of the most vibrant issues in Williamson’s entire run, thanks to the art of Christian Duco and the colors of Luis Guerrero. Central City is still picking up the pieces. And it looks it, for a few panels. Before the Speedsters start to make their way across town. It’s a beautiful display of the Speed Force and a populated city-scape.

Occasionally, the colors or characters can look a bit too much like “models.” Obviously, most comic book art is done on computers these days. But sometimes the art can be resemble something like the uncanny valley. Or sometimes the artist looks like they’re relying on models with oddly shaped heads and anatomy. That isn’t really the case here, but some of the darker scenes can have odd shading and figures that stand out.

The Flash Preview Page - Art by Christian Duce - DC Comics

The Flash Preview Page – Art by Christian Duce – DC Comics

But it’s Duce’s lines that are the most captivating aspect of the art. He creates detailed facial expressions that capture the heart or sadness of the moment. There may be a minor issue here or there, but the art for The Flash #45 is just as great as the story.

The Verdict

Joshua Williamson has built himself a grand version of Central City, filled with speedsters both good and bad. Some have destroyed city blocks; some are looking to put them back together. Together, they make up the cavalcade of characters that have built this into a great series. The emotion that comes from the reunion between Wally and Iris is only palpable because of so much great writing to get the readers to this moment. And it shows.

The future of the Wally Wests gets even more interesting with the final page. Williamson promises to make sense of all of this Universe converging. It’s an exciting cap to this great reunion issue that had an unexpected, and possibly unwanted, appearance from a recent foe.

Unfortunately, Godspeed makes an appearance. He probably didn’t need to be in this issue, and doesn’t really take away from the fun, but his presence is just another reminder that comic book villains are never quite redeemed. But Godspeed can’t bring down the happy go-lucky world brought to you by the art of Christian Duce. There are occasionally some minor art issues, but overall it’s a beautiful display of colorful scenery. Enough to make anyone wish they lived in Central City.

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Comic Book Review: The Flash #45
Pros
  • Funny and Lighthearted Script
  • An Emotional Reunion that Will Get You Right in the Feels
  • Great Art and Colors by Christian Duce and Luis Guerrero
Cons
  • Godspeed Should be Sidelined
  • Minor Art Issues
8Overall Score
Reader Rating: (1 Vote)
10.0

About The Author

Daniel Mills
Batman & DC Writer

Daniel Mills is a screenwriter and director working in Los Angeles, California. Far too many comics and Forgotten Realms-novels led him to want to tell stories of his own. From articles and opinion pieces to reviews and screenplays, he sees every new opportunity as another new realm waiting to be explored.

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