With so many of the “Flashpoint” mini-series and one-shots feeling a bit tangential at best, it’s nice to see that “Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost” appears to have a genuine purpose. Considering it’s set a thousand years in the future, that’s no small feat.
Sterling Gates was the lucky writer to get to handle what happened to Bart Allen, missing from the present day when “Flashpoint” kicked in. Even though he’s trapped back in the future, though, we’re getting an urgency about his story with a (metaphorical) ticking clock counting down the time until he winks out of existence. It’s impressive; so many of the tie-ins have had readers feel that “it doesn’t really matter” (myself included for a few of them) but I think “Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost” manages to neatly sidestep that pitfall. Gates makes us care about Bart and Patty as they’re trapped in the future, and even though Gates isn’t writing “The Flash” come September, his handling of Patty as the new Hot Pursuit makes me wonder if she’ll be sticking around with the relaunch and if this is a hint of what’s to come for her character.
Or to put it another way, there’s something about Gates’ script that makes you care about the characters, despite the limited aspect of “Flashpoint” in general. That shouldn’t be too surprising; he pulled “Supergirl” out of the doldrums a few years ago, and it’s his presence on “Hawk and Dove” this fall that makes me eager to read it too. The plot of “Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost” might be a bit predictable (although I appreciate that Bart’s plan to stop Brainiac is set-up carefully in the first issue and relies on only existing skills for the character) but it’s fun and keeps your attention.
Oliver Nome’s art is variable, here. He’s at his best with pages with only a few elements to focus on; there, the art feels clean and easy to follow. When the scenes shift to the ruined city, though, everything’s a bit cluttered and some of the clarity is lost. Still, give Nome some time and who knows what he’ll be capable of? There’s definite talent here, even if it needs some additional time to refine.
“Flashpoint: Kid Flash Lost” isn’t a must-read, but it’s an enjoyable read. I wish that didn’t make it stand out among most of the “Flashpoint” tie-ins, but Gates and Nome are doing a good job here. In a sea of rapidly diminishing returns, it’s nice to see this pair bucking that trend.