The Revolution continues to be thoroughly unimpressed with this new Flash. The writing has been terribly weak. The storyline is poorly constructed and lacks any real intrigue. The dialogue has been below average at times. The artwork has been rather inconsistent. I have a feeling that the Flash is going to fall victim to the Revolution’s axe. Will Flash #4 save this title from getting kicked off the Revolution’s pull list? Let’s find out.
Writer: Danny Bilson & Paul Demeo
Penciler: Ken Lashley & Sal Velluto
Inker: Wong, Thibert & Leisten
Art Rating: 4 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 4 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 4 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: The issue starts with The Griffin stopping Thatcher’s attack on the CEO of Keystone Motors. Unfortunately, Griffin decides to stop Thatcher by killing him. We cut to a press conference where the President of Keystone Motors is giving Griffin a check for $100,000 for saving his life.
We cut to Jay Garrick and Bart talking about how The Griffin is a danger to everyone around him. Jay mentions that he can feel himself slowing a little with each year now that he no longer has the Speed Force.
We then shift to Bart and Griffin going out to a club together. Valerie is at the same club and sees Bart with Griffin a bunch of ladies. Valerie gets upset that Bart would be out partying it up and gets upset and runs out of the club. We then see Griffin, Bart, and three ladies heading back to Bart and Griffin’s apartment. Bart has been miserable the entire night and wants no part of The Griffin or all of his partying.
Back at the apartment, Bart says he is going to bed. He doesn’t want any part of the partying with the ladies. Griffin gets mad at Bart and says that he is moving out tomorrow. Griffin then notices that his hand looks withered and old. His powers must be doing something to him.
We cut to the next day when Bart is having tests run on him at S.T.A.R. Labs by Valerie. Valerie tells Bart that the Speed Force is all inside of him. And since Barry and Wally became part of the Speed Force they are also now inside Bart. That explains his odd dreams.
Valerie then tells him that this is her last day at S.T.A.R. Labs. That she is being fired since her dad is Manfred Mota. We then get a cheesy romantic dialogue about Bart being out last night at the club, that Bart only wants to be with Valerie, and then Valerie asking Bart to take her home.
We cut to The Griffin recklessly stopping two criminals and almost getting them killed in the process. Luckily, Jay Garrick shows up on the scene and saves the criminals from death. The Griffin looks old and has grey hair.
We shift to Bart visiting Griffin at his new fancy condo. Bart tells Griffin that he needs to go to S.T.A.R. Labs for help. That Griffin’s powers are aging him and may kill him. The Griffin loses his mind and attacks Bart. Bart suits up in his Flash outfit and locks horns with The Griffin.
We cut to Valerie at her house. Someone knocks on her door. She opens the door and comes face to face with her father: Manfred Mota. End of issue.
The Good: Flash #4 continues the downward trend of this title. However, the Revolution’s Rule of Positivity dictates that I find something good to say about this issue. Hmmm, well, I always dig to see Jay Garrick in action. Jay has always been my favorite Flash. Jay is a cool old-school character who doesn’t take any crap from The Griffin.
The Bad: Flash is simply a poorly written comic book. The Bilson and Demeo have failed to craft a single plotline that gets my attention. Let’s see, the plotline involving Bart and Valerie’s cheesy romance. Nope. The plotline involves Manfred Mota. Are you killing me? Nope. The plotline involves The Griffin. Umm, no. The plotline involves Bart absorbing the Speed Force. Mildly interesting. That’s it. Overall, this is a pretty unimpressive collection of plotlines.
Technically, the writing on this title is terribly weak. Bilson and Demeo also have failed to give this title much focus and direction. It feels like the various plotlines are just rambling and wandering around without many purposes. The pacing is slow. It feels like each issue keeps re-hashing the same scenes. Bart has the speed force inside of him. Ok, we have known that since the first issue. Bart continues to whine to Jay about not wanting to be the Flash. Each issue simply keeps repeating the same themes from earlier issues.
The dialogue is average at best and terribly hackneyed and poorly done at worst. Some of the scenes are practically unbearable to read. For example, the scene between Bart and Valerie where he runs her home from the lab has some seriously cheesy dialogue. Unfortunately, the weak dialogue runs throughout the entire issue. If this comic was a TV show, then it would be like some of those corny and stiffly acted shows on the Sci-Fi channel. This dialogue is so flat and stiff. Nobody in real life would talk like the characters in this comic.
Bart is a pretty unappealing hero. All he does is mope about and whine. This is definitely the type of main character that I enjoy. Bart has never been a character that I really liked. I did start to enjoy how Geoff Johns was writing Kid Flash over on Teen Titans. However, this Bart is nothing like the Bart that Johns wrote. Bilson and Demeo have done absolutely nothing to get me to like Bart. I would have greatly preferred either Barry or Wally to be the Flash. I think that DC made a massive mistake in forcing this nonsensical change of replacing Wally with Bart.
The Griffin is possibly one of the most uninteresting villains that I have ever read. The Griffin is so one-dimensional and lacks any depth or complexity. The Griffin is so annoying and boring that he kills any interest I might have in any scene involving him.
Valerie is just the standard stereotypical love interest. She has no real personality and lacks any uniqueness. Another problem with this love story plotline between Valerie and Bart is that it feels terribly forced. Bilson and Demeo have not allowed this plot to grow organically. Instead, they felt this bizarre need that there had to be a love interest for Bart from the very start. So, they created Valerie for no other purpose than your standard generic love plotline which automatically makes Valerie’s character massively underdeveloped. This entire love story is stiff and unnecessary.
The ending of this issue fails to hook me into wanting to read the next issue. Manfred Mota? Seriously? I’m supposed to be interested by this loser. I’ll pass.
It is incredible how far this title has fallen since Geoff Johns left it. The Flash was such a great read when Johns was at the helm. Now, the Flash is just a fraction of its former self. It is amazing how DC could take a title that was such a good solid read and turn it into this sloppy mess of a comic book.
The artwork is very disappointing. The art is inconsistent due to the fact that two pencilers and a whopping total of three inkers worked on Flash #4. Five artists to do the art duties on a single normal-sized issue? That is ludicrous. That is way too many cooks in the kitchen. Flash #4 is one boring-looking issue.
Overall: This new Flash is a total mess of a comic. It has uninteresting plotlines, poorly developed characters, stiff and cheesy dialogue, and inconsistent artwork. That is hardly the recipe for a successful new comic book. DC has made a complete mess of the Flash. I have this title an honest try and now I’m going to have to give this comic book the axe. Chop chop! This title gets kicked off the Revolution’s pull list. With so many great comics on the market to enjoy, this new Flash just isn’t worth my money.