Welcome to Flash War, where everything is about to reach the explosive third act. Within The Flash #49, Joshua Williamson writes some great character moments between Barry and Wally and shows how two speedsters running as fast as possible can have a devastating effect on the planet. Also introduced within this issue are two new “forces.” Howard Porter takes the script of this issue and molds and forms it into a masterpiece in his own right, from the way the paneling is done all the way to how the facial expressions of Barry and Wally are portrayed. Each and every panel of the art is visually great to look at.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
“FLASH WAR” part three! There’s only one thing that can put Wally West’s life back together. As he races back to the present, he has one goal: break the Speed Force! Can The Flash stop his former sidekick before it’s too late?
Tell me about it!
Flash this week introduces two new “forces” that were previously locked away in the speed force. The first is the “Sage Force” that seems to be related to some kind of telepathy/telekinesis? It’s not really too clear in the issue, honestly. The second is the “Strength Force,” which as you can probably easily guess, gives the user incredible strength. I want to give a quick moment to Greg Weisman who mentioned a Strength Force a few years back when mocking the concept of the speedforce with a question along the lines of “does Superman tap into a strength force?” These concepts are honestly really dumb to me and I hope they go away sooner rather than later.
The interactions between Wally and Barry while they’re running is something I really liked about this issue, especially with the build towards them saying that they’re each other’s lightning rods and Wally going almost full Super Saiyan as he breaks the speed force. The interactions with the League when they’re trying to work out what’s wrong were really interesting — especially their reactions after the Flashes stop running and Zoom is revealed to now have his powers back where he takes out each and every member present besides the two Flashes in a manner reminiscent of how he took out everyone in Blitz.