Flash #54 Review
Grips of Strength Conclusion
Written by: Joshua Williamson
Penciled by: Christian Duce
Colored by: Luis Guerrero
Lettered by: Steve Wands
Cover: Dana Mora
Variant Cover: Howard Porter & Arif Prianto
The Flash’s cup runs over with a dose of the Strength Force. With two Strength “Forcers,” Commander Cold has had enough with both of them and a fight ensues. The conclusion of “Grips of Strength”
Previously on The Flash…
Some spoilers for The Flash #53
Last issue, Trickster and the new Strength Force terrorized Central City. Barry and Commander Cold make an attempt to help him understand his new abilities while also trying not to be pounded into the pavement. We learn a bit about Commander Cold’s intense back story but Barry still doesn’t know what his real name is. When Warden Wolfe of Iron Heights gets involved, things get worse when Flash gets a taste of the Strength Force as well.
I will start off with the things about this issue that I liked. The art is superb and is consistently a delight. There is immense detail and emotional depth in just about every panel. Although, I am not a fan of “Body Builder” Barry, the art dealt him a good hand. This issue was packed in some great action that definitely necessary for a Flash story. The story is fast paced but not rushed. I think Barry learning the scientific nuances of the Strength Force is interesting and I would have loved to learn more. I always appreciate a good twist so the end piqued my curiosity for what may come next.
Not so good
There are two annoyances that I cannot ignore. First, when will Barry get it together when it concerns Iris? Or broadly, when will Barry realize that he can’t fix things on his own. Whether it be a battle against Rogues or with having a happy life outside of the costume, Barry should not and can not do it alone. It doesn’t help that Iris is now mimicking Barry and keeping a big secret from him. Maybe it will be different in the end when it comes to head because it’s a two way street and it’s dirty on both sides. Second and lastly, there was a particular moment that seemed like a conclusion that was emotional and heartwarming and it was squandered. Williamson is usually good for pulling on the heartstrings but this time, he pulled the rug from under us as readers. It may be hard to trust another moment like that in the future.