[singlepic id=386 w=320 h=240 float=left]Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost
Writer Sterling Gates
Pencils Oliver Nome
Inks Trevor Scott
Colors Brian Buccellato
Bart Allen finds himself running side by side with his grandfather, Barry Allen, who is talking down to him about how he only slows Barry down. Bart then notices there are subtle differences to the town, and that he’s running too smoothly (he mentions a slight limp due to his artificial knee, a result of events from Teen Titans #1 & #2). Between this and Barry’s sour demeanor, he concludes that the world he’s in is fake. When Bart snaps out of it, he’s on board an alien ship, plugged into a machine and cut off from the Speed Force. He soon encounters his captor, Brainiac, who has pulled Bart out of the time stream and placed him into a cryo-sleep chamber. Brainiac recaptures Bart, but before he can place him back into the cryo-sleep, a new Hot Pursuit arrives and rescues him. The two discover that Brainiac’s ship is on an alternate Earth in the year 3011, and the planet has been decimated. Hot Pursuit reveals herself as Patty Spivot, who believes she is somehow responsible for what happened after her encounter with The Reverse Flash (in The Flash #12), and Bart realizes he’s slowly beginning to fade from the timestream.
The biggest problem with the above story is that nothing really happens. There’s no real pop to the story, no big surprises. For a three issue mini-series, Kid Flash Lost just seems to kind of wander around looking for plot twists, but never actually succeeds in finding one that really blows you away. I blame a lot of this on the already prevalent Flashpoint exhaustion. There’s just so much going on with these characters right now that it’s hard to let what’s happening really sink in, especially when you know it’s all getting rebooted/relaunched in a few months anyways. The final twist, that Bart is supposedly disappearing from the time stream because he’s “not supposed to be here” doesn’t really have the impact it should, if only because it’s the same tired time travel schtick we’ve seen a dozen times over.
Bart is presented here as a really well-rounded, fleshed out character though. The story does a good job of not only establishing his personality, but the numerous references to the character’s storied past really help remind us just how long he’s been around; this is the first mention in ages I can recall of his artificial knee, and the first I know of where we learned there was any kind of a lasting side effect of the change. Patty’s appearance is brief, and we don’t know much about her transformation into Hot Pursuit, but she doesn’t seem too radically changed for it, while Braniac’s brief, unexplained appearance and cut off final line makes it pretty obvious that he’s going to be trying to help Bart in a twist for the final issue.
The book is ultimately fun and somewhat character driven, but as mentioned before it feels a little light for the first of a three issue mini-series, almost as if the story’s tank is as empty as Hot Pursuit’s. Bart being front and center of his own book again is nice, and the throwbacks to previous Kid Flash/Impulse stories is a nice touch for fans, but this mini will definitely need to pick up a bit more speed before it reaches it’s conclusion.