Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Dark Nights: Death Metal Speed Metal #1 Review

Fast Enough To Beat The Devil

Written By: Joshua Williamson
Art By: Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Adriano Lucas, Steve Wands
Cover Price: $5.99 
Release Date: September 22, 2020

It's time to not only explore the Metalverse more through this one-shot but also check out the other heroes that are out and about and trying to stop the Batman Who Laughs and the Mother of Creation, Perpetua. This time around we're amping up the speed as we see the Flash Family do their best to outrun the Batman Who Laughs, who now has become the Darkest Knight with his new body made up of Creation Energy or just simply, the Dr. Manhattan/Bruce Wayne body that he stole and inserted his brain into. The Metalverse is weird as hell and just silly at times while it throws out strange concepts that are rarely explored or explained and I don't know how anything is going to become truly clearer when we add the nonsense of the Speed Force into it, but let's see if Joshua Williamson shows us something interesting with this one-shot to this event. Let's dive into this issue and check it out.

As we saw from the regular Death Metal series, the Darkest Knight is chasing after Barry Allen, Wally West, Jay Garrick and Wallace West so that he can take the rest of the Creation Energy from Wally and add it to his own power. With Wally being believed that he's the savior of time and space and that he has to be the one to go up against Perpetua once the Trinity collects enough Crisis Energy from the Dark Multiverse, we gotta keep our favorite Flash safe for the time being. That's the story so far, but you don't really get that from this issue though, where Barry and Wally are at odds with one another as if they still have unresolved issues from Barry's return in The Flash: Rebirth from 2009, which feels strange for how long it's been since Barry's return, but ultimately this issue is more about Wally West finally getting out of Barry's shadow and Barry doing everything he can here to make sure that he lets Wally knows that he's the guy in charge here and that he's willing to follow him to wherever he wants to go in their attempt to save the Multiverse. It's a long road to get to that point, especially for all the arguing that goes on throughout this issue until the two Flashes decide to play nice with one another, but it does lead to nice moments throughout this issue, even if they feel forced to get to it.

Beyond the character interactions which go from infuriating to "awww", the premise of collecting the Mobius Chair to make sure that the Batman Who Laughs, now with the Creation Energy of Dr. Manhattan can't use it goes above and beyond to give us Speed Force nonsense that just drives me nuts, especially since we use concepts in this book that haven't been fully explored throughout the Metal, Justice League and now Death Metal stories so how and why things are happening doesn't make a ton of sense to me, but it seems that you're just supposed to go with what's on the page, even if it comes off ridiculous. You get this in the main Flash book so I don't know what I expected here with everything else that's been thrown our way since this story began. Even with my criticisms though there is a sense of importance to this story and it's just one more step in knocking down Perpetua and the Batman Who Laughs a peg from their overall supremacy of the Multiverse, not to mention if you're a fan of Flash Family moments, you'll probably get your money's worth here just for those moments, even if they seem strange overall.

All in all, the art in this issue is great throughout and you get the Flash Family doing their part in bringing our villains down and the idea that while they may have won the battle of this issue, the war is still going on and they're making their way back to the front lines, which is nice to see overall. I just wish that the characters in this book would act like they actually like each other and not go around with a decade's old chip on their shoulder that shouldn't be addressed here because it's not the time or the place for it and just leaves you wondering if the Flashes have their priorities straight. The Speed Force is nonsense and it's been nonsense for a long ass time now and that's used to the Nth degree here in order to see our heroes come out on top and while there is precedence for certain situations that are kind of cool, it's just a magic thing that makes anything possible and allows the writer to just do anything without any explanation beyond saying the word "Speed Force" and it makes things come off ridiculous at times. Overall though, this is a fine installment to the silly Death Metal story, I just wish that we could take the time to understand the world and the concepts more because it seems like every time we do something in this story that's been going on since the first Metal that ideas keep changing or evolving without anyone saying why or allowing the reader to understand them. Like I said though, this feels important and if you're a Flash fan, you'll wanna check in on what they've been up to during this event.

Bits and Pieces:

The Flash Family are on the run of their lives and that's what they're going to do here...... run back and forth to achieve their goals, while arguing about what their goals are, but eventually they're going to find their footing and they're going to be who they should have been throughout this story, instead of having drama that seemed unwarranted for the time and place. This is a mixed bag of a story for me, but the art looks great throughout and the story feels important so ultimately if you're a Flash fan and a Death Metal fan you'll want to check this out.


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