The Flash, Volume 2: Speed of Darkness (Rebirth) by Joshua Williamson (Writer), Felipe Watanabe (Penciler), Oclair Albert (Inker), Chris Sotomayor (Colourist), Steve Wands (Goodreads Author) (Letterer), Jorge Corona (Artist), Ivan Plascencia (Colourist) | Rating: ★★☆☆☆
A copy of this novel was provided through Edelweiss by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions in any way.
I think now is the time for me to admit defeat when it comes to my dislike of (or rather, boredom towards) the DC Universe Rebirth comics. At this point, it's become so tedious and boring to read the latest issues, I'm not sure why I'm shocked when an issue (or in this case, collection) just isn't my cup of tea. In all the good, there has been far more strikes against this run. The Flash: Speed of Darkness takes on an incredibly lackluster path and even its magnificent artwork cannot save it.
While its predecessor had its flaws it still remained full of that spark meant to keep readers attentive; this one didn't. It had an even more difficult time keeping its footing--it was, to put it bluntly, dull. I'm not talking "oh, it's fine--I'll push through it" levels of dull. We're talking "I put this down seven or eight times since I began reading it and still can't get past it" levels of "I'm lucky I even finished it" dull.
Ugh. See, I don't even know where to begin? Because despite its two-star rating and despite the fact that I am not a fan of it, it still wasn't the worst comic I've ever read. Do you see my problem? How can I say that coherently? Is it that this installment of The Flash was bad because it was bad or was it simply because it wasn't my cup of tea? I can't say for sure because everyone has a different sort of preference and maybe, just maybe, The Flash still isn't my comic.
I just felt like for a good portion of my reading, the story felt like it was at a standstill. It was moving. But it wasn't all at the same time. I felt like there was so much that could have, or should have been, done and the interpretation of the characters wasn't necessarily bad, it was just flat compared to the previous collection. Even more so, sometimes I felt like I was having Déjà vu but not in a good, throwback kind of way and it made me cringe more times than not. I felt like I knew these characters but that there were a poor reflection of who they really and truly are--in other words, it felt out of touch and not unlike wasted potential.
Ultimately, there were a lot of circles that I wasn't all too keen on. What I mean to say is, I felt like the entire story was circling in on something only to never reach that point. Again, wasted potential and lacking of suspense. It just didn't feel like something that would move the earth beneath comic readers feet and it just made me shrug. There's positively no excitement or uniqueness to the way we witness the action through both story-telling and artwork (which isn't bad artwork--it, as per usual, saves what is definitely a mediocre story) and not much of the story seemed to work.
That being said, there were (grudgingly as it may be to admit) some decent parts of the stories. I didn't totally hate every inch on every page and that's all there is to say. Fans of The Flash in his current run will certainly appreciate and enjoy this collection of issues but for the most part, I can't see it striking a chord amongst many fans.