Joshua Williamson, writer
Scott Kolins, art
Luis Guerrero, colors
Steve Wands, letters
In the previous issue, Barry learns where The Trickster’s home base is located. Trickster is using The Happy Machine he developed and his connection to The Sage Force to control the people of Central City. In this issue, The Flash has a moment of clarity where he realizes that he needs help, and so he asks fellow prisoner Commander Cold to help him get his legs back. Cold reminds Barry that The Trickster is connected to The Sage Force, which he’s using to cloud Barry’s mind. Barry focuses on a memory that will remind him of who he is, The Flash, and he escapes. Meanwhile, The Trickster and a group of Rogues members escape with money they’ve stolen to Iron Heights. The Flash pursues but is in for an explosive surprise when he arrives, and the Trickster and his team gone. Meanwhile, the cliffhanger at the end of the issue involves another one of the new forces and a tie in to The Flash Year One story, which starts with issue #70.
The Trickster managed to do what very few villains could do, stop The Flash from running. What makes this interesting is how he does it. I enjoyed that it was the villain’s connection to The Sage Force that gave him the power to control minds, and therefore distort perceptions. More importantly, The Trickster was a perfect conduit for The Sage Force because it’s what magicians and thieves do, distort reality for a moment to capture the attention of the audience. In addition, the disappearance of The Trickster and other members of The Rogues at the end fits with the mind-bending capacities of The Sage Force.
Scott Kolins provides another beautifully crafted book. The colors are bright & chalky, the panels are cartoonish and yet descriptive. I especially enjoyed a panel that shows famous Rogues’ members, like Mirror Man and The Weather Wizard, vandalizing the city. The artist uses bright colors and detailed pencils in the foreground and blurrier tones in the background to elicit the attention of the reader. The visual aesthetic is lighthearted and fun fitting the tone of the book perfectly.
Overall = 9.5
The mystery surrounding the character in the final panel and their connection to The Still Force propels this story toward The Flash Year One story, which begins in the next issue. I highly recommend long-time fans of The Flash to jump on board this wonderful book!