Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Final Crisis: Rogues' Revenge #1 Review

Writer: Geoff Johns
Penciler: Scott Kolins

I admit, I don't really follow the Flash, so I'm piecing together a lot of what is going on here. I think I did a pretty good job, but I'm not convinced, after piecing it together, that we have a very good story here. As a premise, it seems not very interesting, and actually silly to the point of unbelievability. It putatively ties into the Final Crisis story, but does such a good job of establishing that these villains are not going to be a part of Libra's new Society, that it cuts its own umbilical cord right away.

The story starts off with a group called the "rogues", most of whom I recognise. There is Mirror Master, Weather Wizard, Captain Cold and Heat Wave (he's the one I don't remember). They killed Bart Allen, the Flash, formerly known as Kid Flash, and now are on the run.

Except...and here's the part that I found silly...they killed the Kid Flash by accident. Wait, what? It seems they didn't really think that their powers would kill the Flash, as he runs so fast. By the dastardly Inertia stole Kid Flash's speed (that fink!), and they killed him by accident when he slowed down. Now, they plan to track down Inertia and kill him in revenge for causing them to accidently kill Kid Flash. Zoom, however, shows up and kidnaps Intertia, intending to turn him into the new Kid Flash.

Okay, now that's just silly. I get that the rogues in the Flash comics aren't the deranged psychos from Batman, but they certainly are murderers. At one point, Cold says that he only kills in self-defense, despite clearly murdering someone in cold blood a few pages earlier. Perhaps the theme of this book is going to be the confusion that evil people feel when they try to integrate their compassion and sense of honour into their lives and that this is all just a commentary on that, but right now, it looks like this book is shaping up to be a weak story.

There are a few positive elements to this book. Aside from the strange looking raindrops from early in the book, the art is quite strong, especially for locations like the Flash Museum. I like seeing Pied Piper again, especially now that he's decided to be creepy. Libra is scary, as usual, although I admit I cringe when he reads from the "Crime Bible", since I think that may actually be D.C.'s stupidest idea ever.

As a non-Flash fan, I'm not sure how interesting a group of villains ganging up on another villain for "revenge" for "making" them kill a rival is going to be. I think all the stuff about how they killed Bart by accident was supposed to make us feel like they are less evil than Inertia so that we will root for them, but really it just made them look stupid. Stupid characters tend not to make interesting protagonists, and I worry this story will end up falling flat.


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