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Sunday, November 27, 2011 

Nashua Telegraph says nothing about the BND tactics involved in relaunch of the Flash

The Nashua Telegraph writes a biased article about Francis Manapul and Brian Bucalleto's relaunch of the Flash for the DCnU, not telling about the cheats involved. First, here's what they say about Geoff Johns' own retconning from 3 years before:
Now, the knock against Barry Allen – and why he was “dead” for 22 years – has always been that he’s so perfectly heroic that he’s perfectly boring. But Johns added some angst with the recent “Flashpoint” miniseries (available in hardback, $22.99), which included a shocking development in the death of Allen’s mother that has added considerably to his personality and motivations.
Boy, they sure do love to imply that darkening a famous hero's background is a "positive" direction, don't they. But that grimefest Johns cooked up is just the kind of thing that makes me look down my nose at him in disgrace and shame.

Now, here's where there's a problem going the opposite direction, the one that echos Marvel's own steps with Spider-Man:
And clearly, Manapul and Buccellato don’t think Allen’s true-blue heroism is boring; in fact, they consider it a plus.

“What makes him special is that he comes from a time when a hero was a hero because that was the right thing to do,” Manapul said. “It’s the kind of hero that I think a lot of us, when were kids, aspired to.

“Now with the way the industry is, there are a lot of antiheroes. It’s cool and it’s popular, but it’s not at the core of what a hero is about. I think (that heroism) is what The Flash represents to me. I think you’ll see throughout the first year that we’re constantly putting that in contrast both in terms of the thematic story, as well as visually. He is the brightest thing that you’ll see on the page, and that’s not by accident.”

“Flash doesn’t have any other agenda than to be heroic and to do the right thing,” Buccellato added. “He’s very simple in that way, and I think it’s refreshing. Because, like Francis said, we’ve had a lot of tortured heroes for a while, and it’s nice to see somebody who’s going to stand up just because it’s the right thing to do.”
Granted, this argument in itself is valid, because yes, the problem they cite has long been a staple for mainstream comics, and even a few Image titles, to be sure.

Unfortunately, what nullifies everything is something not mentioned in the article, which is the almost complete obliteration of Iris West Allen and Wally West from the Flash's main cast - especially the latter protagonist - all for the sake of pairing up Barry Allen with onetime lab assistant Patty Spivot and so that Barry can be the sole hero in the spotlight. Nowhere in the article does it mention the Wests or Spivot, and that's where the aforementioned similarities to Spider-Man's Brand New Day come in. DC's editorial mandaters have - subtly or otherwise - thrown the Wests out over the past 2 years, ditto Linda Park West, lest I forget. And if they're going to by such a shameless editorial mandate, then just like Brand New Day in Spider-Man, which banished Mary Jane Watson Parker as Peter Parker's wife, any optimistic viewpoint is rendered dishonest and invalidated. And the newspaper is being dishonest if they're not willing to bring up those editorial mandates and comment on them.

Not that the book as relaunched ever really boomed in sales, and if they're going to be so disrespectful of anybody who'd already invested in Wally West's own cast over the past 2 decades, that's why the series as it stands now is not worth buying.

Besides, how do we know that they won't try something contradictory to optimism and brightness later down the road?

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It's pathetic how they feel the need to darken a character's background just to make them supposedly more "appealing."

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