Convergence: Speed Force #1

"Convergence: Speed Force" #1 is not a direct descendant from Mark Waid's work with Wally and his family, but it does follow the path Waid established right up to "Flashpoint." Writer Tony Bedard locks onto Wally's voice and what motivates the speedster, bringing all of that to the front. Bedard also explains why Wally is in Gotham, who else is there and what it all means in the moments before Telos drops the domes. Bedard has a comfortable, familiar grasp on Wally's voice, which is easy to settle into and fun to catch up with.

Ace "Titans" and "Superman" artist Tom Grummett joins Bedard on this return to the life and times of Wally West. Grummett's expressive faces and hands, masterful as always, finish the lines of his characters' bodies, carrying their emotions and attitudes through to their fingertips. While Al Vey will always be the default choice inker for Grummett, Sean Parsons does a wonderful job hitting the shading, locking in the shapes, filling out the shadows and adding depth to Grummett's lines. Rain Beredo's colors are more damp than usually fits a Flash story, but it works for the mystery of "Convergence" and the organic nature of Bedard's story. Most importantly, Beredo makes certain that, in every panel where readers can see Wally's eyes, they are appropriately green. Dave Sharpe is on task for Telos' exposition when the dome drops and keeps the rest of the story on task. The caption boxes of Wally's thoughts are well apportioned, while the dialogue and sound effects are appropriate for the era and the characters.

"Convergence: Speed Force" #1 is the most complete single issue of this event so far, using the twenty pages provided to explain the predicament, introduce the character, tie in the other pieces and set up the conflict. As a bonus, Bedard, Grummett, Parsons, Beredo and Sharpe check in on the Justice Riders, Follywood, Califurnia, Bizarroworld and a number of other franchises, using Wally's powers to provide a quick glimpse of the potential couched in this event. This issue does readers a magnificent service by bringing Wally West back to comic book shelves. Adding in Fastback is an inspired choice, teaming up two of the more optimistic, brighter lights of DC Comics' history as they face the forces of "Flashpoint" Wonder Woman. Bedard makes it easy to choose sides in this battle and gives readers a fun story to look forward to.

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