THE FLASH #786/ Script by JEREMY ADAMS/ Art by AMANCAY NAHUELPAN/ Colors by JEROMY COX & PETER PANTAZIS/ Letters by AV’S JUSTIN BIRCH/ Covers by TAURIN CLARKE, GEORGE KAMBADAIS, DANIEL SAMPERE & ALEJANDRO SANCHEZ/ Published by DC COMICS
The Flash #786 is a frankly astonishing book. It is astonishing because of what it is and what it does well. It is a tie-in to the Dark Crisis storyline. It is also a perfect introduction to the current The Flash series. Beyond that, it is a fantastic thematic introduction to the DC Comics universe.
Jeremy Adams’ script quickly informs the reader as to what is going on. The short version is that the Earth’s supervillains, under the command of Deathstroke and a cosmic villain called Pariah, are attempting to kill peoples’ belief in heroes. Or, failing that, as many heroes as they can. This issue finds the heroes coordinating to take the fight to the villains, with the Flash family running interference as first responders.
Adams’ story is full of action, but what makes this issue (and indeed his run on The Flash to date) so amazing is all the little character moments. From Irey West cutting the Damian Wayne Robin down to size, to the simple joy Jai West takes in mastering a new application for his super strength under the tutelage of Power Girl, there are a lot of heart-felt moments in this issue. There is comedy. There is pathos. There is ethos. There are also a lot of in-jokes for longtime JSA fans, but those are Easter eggs that don’t require a degree in DC History.
The artwork proves the equal of the story. Amancay Nahuelpan boasts a distinctive style, yet I can’t help but be reminded of Todd McFarlane at the height of his powers. Nahyelpan’s style is detailed, yet oddly streamlined and elegant, with some great character expressions. The vivid color art by Jeromy Cox and Peter Pantazis provides the perfect finishes for the issue.
The Flash #786 is a miraculous book. Despite being a middle-chapter tie-in to a crossover event, it is easily accessible to new readers. The story is gripping, the characters instantly likeable and the artwork all-around amazing. If you haven’t been reading The Flash, here is where to start.