Endless Winter is a nine-part crossover event that kicked off last week with an interesting new threat for the Justice League to fight. This ancient threat isn’t even the most dangerous thing they’re fighting right now, though, as the Earth has been plunged into freezing cold winter. Part 2 of the event kicks off this week with The Flash #767 as Barry tries to keep himself warm and fast. Series writers hinted at a group of ancient heroes who combated this threat before and Black Adam seems to be at the center of it all — thus the cover to this issue!
This is a good issue that sets the stage for the entire Justice League, establishes Flash’s priorities, and continues to shed new light on a group of heroes from the 10th century. This issue opens in Greenland where a Norse prince, Amazon Queen, and Black Adam convene under a harsh, inexplicable winter. This scene helps tie Black Adam’s role and understanding of the new threat known as the Frost King. Further, Lanning and Marz connect the dots with some interesting subtext concerning Black Adam’s motives early on with a scene at the United Nations. The political elements add to the already exciting mystery of how the Justice League can stop the world from freezing.
The opening scene is drawn by Marco Santucci, who exhibits an old-school vibe not unlike class Conan the Barbarian comics. Color artist Arif Prianto gives this opening scene a more weathered look that plays up the time change. It also allows Flash’s scene to look more modern and zippy.
Flash flans will enjoy this issue for the sharp visuals and captions that get inside Barry’s head. If Flash is getting cold, one can imagine the world is really in trouble. Clayton Henry draws a great Flash with the modern color effects by Marcelo Maiolo coming in hot. Henry opens his portion of the book with two double-page layouts featuring slashes of panels that help draw the eye from left to right as Flash runs, as well as give us an economical look at where the heroes are around the world. Henry draws Flash with a longer and thinner body, which makes him look sleeker and more nimble. Paired against Black Adam, Henry is depicting this usually villainous character as more grounded and relatable. He’s still cunning and up to something, but he’s rendered in a way where he seems a friend and not a foe.
As event books go, this issue does enough to check in with the entire group while focusing on Flash’s worry as he slows down. It’s effective in relaying the team is in a bad place and is not losing just yet, but their backs are against the wall. It’s a good middle-of-the-road, table setting sort of issue that doesn’t do anything too flashy, but it does establish things well. In hindsight, The Flash doesn’t have much to do in the book, but he does bring our focus to many different elements. One might argue it’s a bit odd Black Adam is trusted so easily by The Flash, especially after what he does to him, but this a different time for the character as he’s the leader of a nation as revealed in Doomsday Clock.
The Flash #767 is a good issue establishing where the team is at after encountering the Frost King last issue and serving as a check-in of sorts. There are mysteries afoot from the villain to Black Adam, and more importantly the Justice League may be too tapped to find a solution before it’s too late.
The third part of “Endless Winter” is also out this week so if you don’t want to miss a chapter read Superman: Endless Winter Special #1.
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