Art by: Carmine Di Giandomenico, Davide Gianfelice, Neil Googe, Ivan Plascencia and Steve Wands
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: February 22, 2017
I have really enjoyed this Rogues Reloaded story because...well. I like the Rogues! As a group, they are easily in my top 5 of all villain teams and depending on my mood and what house Jupiter is in, they may even sit at the very top of that list. I wondered why Williamson kept them out of the book at the beginning of Rebirth, but now that they are back, I am a very happy guy. Of course, the reunion hasn't been so great for the Flash and last issue ended with him on the losing end of Captain Cold's gun...now a combination of his freeze gun and Black Hole technology. If you've been reading Rebirth Flash, you know that's bad news. If you haven't...that's bad news. Now that we are all up to speed, did this issue continue to impress? Let's find out...
The issue starts with Cold explaining his new Black Ice gun and it seemed a bit off because I thought he just stole the Black Hole tech last issue, but I'll let that slide a bit because it is pretty cool (pun intended). It also made me laugh when Barry suggested that the Captain get a job at STAR Labs...like that is ever going to happen! The laughs kind of ended there as the issue devolved into a psychological battle between the Rogues and Flash. Actually, it was more in lines with a "I know you are but what am I" fight, but I was trying to be nice.
It starts with Barry telling Snart he will never escape his father, which leads to Snart telling Barry he is a selfish hero. Sticks and stones...It's not all bad, but the promise of this new gun had me pumped with anticipation and it really lead to nothing. Barry managed to take it out with ease, even if nobody realized it at first.
While the issue starts as Snart versus Barry, the rest of the Rogues are in the house as well. However, they are only there to cause a minor disturbance before Golden Glider goes against the code and it all backfires on her and the gang. Yep, it seems like the message here is "stick with what you know" and the Rogues end up face down in the street for not following it.
The bulk of the remaining pages show Flash returning all the stuff the Rogues stole, but after we see a bit of Kid Flash looking into his father's current whereabouts, we get a pretty cold cliffhanger. I don't want to spoil too much (more), but it looks like Central City has a new crime boss and as the Who sang, it's kind of a "same as the old boss" situation.
This issue was a bit of a letdown as a whole. The whole Black Ice gun fizzled out and the character moments seemed forced because they had been telegraphed issues before. I am looking forward to the Kid Flash/Reverse Flash stuff, but we don't get enough here to raise my score at all. The worst part of the issue and the arc so far is while we get a neat cliffhanger, it kind of makes the story before it worthless. Everything that the Flash did to stop the Rogues was for nought and while that may have been Cold's plan all along, it didn't feel like that...yet. I may change my tune in two weeks, but as of now, I was left wanting more.
I did really like the art in this issue. Even with a bunch of artists, it had smooth transitions and while nothing really jumped out at me, it was solid throughout.
Bits and Pieces:
This issue may not have wasted all the momentum going into it, but it didn't use it to it's advantage either. Unfortunately, we were left with what I thought was the weakest issue of this arc and while the cliffhanger promises a good time to come, it kind of made what came before it meaningless. I liked the art enough, but overall, but it couldn't save this issue from being just slightly above mediocre.