Last Week’s Comics 7/13/2011

Flashpoint #3

(DC -writer: Geoff Johns; art: Andy Kubert)

I decided that rather than bash Flashpoint again (I’ve done it twice now), I’m going to focus on the two positives this issue has to offer – Cyborg and Superman.

Cyborg is a character about whom I know very little. I know he works with the Teen Titans and that’s about it. But in a recent io9 interview, Geoff Johns said of Cyborg, “He’s a hero who’s plugged in 24/7 and constantly in touch with technology and information. He’s a product of the day, he really is the twenty-first century everyman.” The character is going to play a bigger role in the DC reboot starting in September, so here we get to see what Vic Stone can do. 

First off, he’s connected to everything. He’s got the ability to access secret files, project schematics, smash through walls and even create subsonic sound waves to destroy both glass and a henchman’s balance. His importance in the story is that he’s trying to form a group of heroes to take on Wonder Woman and Aquaman, both of whom have decimated Europe. He’s probably the true hero of Flashpoint because he hasn’t become disillusioned with the world. Whereas Thomas thinks humanity is a sickness, Vic thinks people will fight for what’s right, if given proper motivation. He’s got hope – the one thing that seems

to be lacking from the characters in Flashpoint.

Superman is the other cool part of Flashpoint #3. When he crashed in Metropolis, someone boarded him up behind a vault door, locking him in a glass cell bathed in red sunlight, thereby completely depowering Kal-El. No yellow sun, no Superman. He’s presented as a savior, so clearly he holds some importance to the story. Kubert illustrates Kal-El as sickly thin, pale, and scared (conveying weakness). In a world of alternates, Flashpoint’s Kal-El is the antithesis to the known Superman.

Not much else in the story is redeeming enough to mention. The same problems that have plagued the first two issues are still present, and the conclusion isn’t much of a cliffhanger to keep this reader interested in a fourth (or even fifth) issue. The nuances of an alternative world are much more interesting than the story. Andy Kubert, Sandra Hope and Alex Sinclair are the real stars of the series so far. The art is engaging and beautiful. The characters are both blocky and smooth. Kubert creates some impressive settings in the story, and the palpability of the visuals at least makes the comic fun to look at. I’ll still read Flashpoint because I want to see how it ends, but much like finishing my vegetables as a little kid, I won’t enjoy it.

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