Saturday, April 11, 2015

Convergence: Speed Force #1 Review

Written by: Tony Bedard
Art by: Tom Grummett
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: April 8, 2015

Oh, The Places You'll Go!


I am a Flash fan through and through, but I'm sure it will upset some of you out there to know that I am a Barry Allen man, myself.  He's my Flash.  To get it all out there, I'm also a Matt Smith, John Lennon, Kirk and Dick York man as well.  Whew, it feels great to finally get that off my chest.  Back to why we're here...Speed Force.  Even though Wally is not my favorite, I couldn't wait for this issue. In fact, that's why I was.  Since the New 52 started, I've heard so much talk about wanting Wally back and then when he did return, some were even more upset.  (On a side note: I like the new Wally and am only upset that we haven't got more development with him.)  Now those people get their Wally back and I get to see what all the hype is about.  Am I changing my allegiances?  Let's find out...



The issue starts with Wally heading into Gotham.  If this is your first Convergence title, get used to the forced way the authors have to get our heroes into certain cities. I like this one better than most, except for one obvious thing.  There is a "chronal disturbance" that the JLI has sent Wally to check out.  That seems okay enough, though I wonder where Batman is, but that's not the problem.  In a move that will not get Wally a Father of the Year award, he brings his Kids.  Yes, Iris and Jai are tagging along to a potential disaster because "They need to master their abilities".  It's an issue I can overlook because it leads to a richer story...and a bunch of fun.

The fun has to wait a bit, however, because life under the Dome hasn't been great for Wally.  In fact, some citizens remark that he has gone crazy (to quote Johnny Quick or my 14 year old son).  He misses his wife and blames himself (rightly) for bringing the kids into this situation.  Then we get Telos' speech with a Wonder Woman slant and the Dome comes down.  Wally and the kids are Speedsters again and the issue shifts into overdrive.  I'm sorry for that.

Up until now, Tony Bedard has given us a sad tale of a Father trying to do right and make up for his mistakes and I really liked it.  Things get even better.  With the Dome down and his powers restored, Wally heads off to explore the other cities and save one in particular...El Inferno.  I wish DC would have given a reading order for each week of issues.  I'm sure they would tell me that each issue is it's own entity, but this one is more.  This issue ties in with the events of Nightwing/Oracle by showing the aftermath of "losing".  El Inferno and it's inhabitants just turn to dust and are gone.  Shit just got real!

After such a grim scene, it's nice that Bedard lightens the mood with a great Convergence city tour. This is where having the kids along for the ride pays off.  With the likes of Bizarro Metropolis and Follywood, it's so much fun and I love Jai's ADD glee.  It's not all window dressing, however, as an awesome member of the Zoo Crew follows them back to their Gotham and proposes a team up. Again, it's just pure fun until Flashpoint Wonder Woman shows up and shit gets real...again!

Like some of the other Convergence tie-ins, this issue is all setup for next month's finale, but I liked it.  I enjoyed seeing Wally and the kids and am hoping for even more crazy guest stars next month to help fight Flashpoint Wonder Woman.  I am still a Barry man, but I see why people love Wally.

I really liked Tom Grummett's art and that combined with Sean Parsons' inks and Rain Beredo's colors, the issue had a great cartoony look that fit the story so well.  I especially loved the vibrant change when Wally gains back his powers.  Great job from everyone.

Bits and Pieces:

This is a really  good Convergence and Flash issue.  I will leave it to the "experts" as to whether it is a good Wally West story, but this dummy liked it.  The story sets up some big fun and as an added bonus, gives the reader a look at some great Convergence Cities.  Tom Grummett and the entire art team give the whole thing an awesome cartoony look that is appropriate and just fun.  That sums up most of the issue...fun.  I can't wait for the finale.

8.5/10
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