Flashpoint (comics)

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For the animated adaptation, see Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox.
Flashpoint
Cover art to Flashpoint #1.
Art by Andy Kubert.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Format Limited series
Genre
Publication date May – September 2011
Number of issues 5 (main series)[1]
Main character(s) Flash
Batman
Cyborg[1]
Booster Gold
Wonder Woman
Aquaman
Creative team
Writer(s) Geoff Johns[1]
Artist(s) Andy Kubert[1]
Collected editions
Hardcover ISBN 1-4012-3337-6

"Flashpoint" is an American comic book crossover story arc published by DC Comics. Consisting of an eponymous core limited series and a number of tie-in titles, the storyline premiered in May 2011. The core miniseries was written by Geoff Johns and penciled by Andy Kubert. In its conclusion, the series radically changes the status quo for the DC Universe leading into the publisher's 2011 relaunch, The New 52.

Flashpoint details an altered DC Universe in which only Barry Allen, Kid Flash and Booster Gold seem to be aware of significant differences between the regular timeline and the altered one, including Cyborg's place as the world's quintessential hero, Superman's detention by the government and a Thomas Wayne version of Batman who spends his days "running Wayne Casinos."[1]

Consisting of a five-issue run, the series crossed over with Booster Gold, sixteen separate three-issue miniseries, and a number of one-shots beginning in June 2011.[2] DC announced that Flash #12 would be the last in the series; a thirteenth issue had been announced for sale on May 25, 2011, but was withdrawn.[3]

Synopsis[edit]

Barry Allen wakes up to discover everything and everyone around him has changed. Citizen Cold is Central City's greatest hero; his mother Nora (deceased in his own timeline) is alive; his father, Henry, died of a heart attack three years ago (instead of in prison); and that the Flash, the Justice League, and even Superman do not exist. In Gotham City, Batman throws a criminal off a building before being confronted by Cyborg. Cyborg and Batman have a conference with a group of superheroes to discuss how the battle between Aquaman's Atlanteans and Wonder Woman's Amazons has caused massive death and destruction in Western Europe (sunk by the Atlanteans, except for the British Isles, which were conquered by the Amazons), with America similarly endangered. The heroes cannot cooperate to find a solution, and the meeting is disbanded. Barry Allen drives to the Batcave where Batman, who is revealed to be Thomas Wayne, attacks him — his son, Bruce, has died in his and his wife's place in this timeline.[4][5][6]

In the flooded remains of Paris, Deathstroke captains a pirate ship in search of his daughter. Emperor Aquaman appears, stabs Deathstroke in the chest and attacks Deathstroke's crew (Sonar, Icicle, and Clayface). Sonar is able to remove a piece of the trident from Deathstroke's chest and heal him. Back at Wayne Manor, Barry tries to explain to Thomas about his secret identity as the Flash and his relationship to Bruce Wayne. Barry's memory begins to spontaneously realign itself to the altered timeline and Barry realizes that the world of Flashpoint is not a parallel dimension, but an alternate reality. Barry's ring ejects Professor Eobard "Zoom" Thawne's Reverse-Flash costume and causes Barry to believe that his enemy is responsible for changing history. Barry decides to recreate the accident that gave him his powers in a bid to undo the damage caused by Thawne, but his initial attempt leaves him badly burned.[7]

In London, Steve Trevor is waiting at a rendezvous for Lois Lane but is attacked by Wonder Woman and the Amazons. Wonder Woman catches him by the neck with her Lasso of Truth and begins interrogating him. He explains that he was hired to extract Lane from New Themyscira because she was sent to gather information on the Amazons for Cyborg. The U.S. president informs Cyborg that Steve Trevor sent a signal to the Resistance but was intercepted because of a traitor among the heroes that Cyborg tried to recruit. Cyborg is relieved of duty as Element Woman sneaks into the headquarters. Meanwhile in New Themyscira, Lane encounters the Resistance.

A second attempt at recreating Allen's accident restores his powers and health. He concludes that the Reverse-Flash changed history to prevent the formation of the Justice League. He also learns that Kal-El was taken by Project: Superman. Flash, Batman and Cyborg join the cause to stop Wonder Woman and Aquaman. The three find a pale, weakened Superman at the Project and realize that he may well have been in a containment cell since he was a child—possibly never even seeing a human being before. After being rescued, Superman flies off in seeming fright in the midst of a battle with the guards, leaving the three in the sewers to be rescued by Element Woman.[8] Flash's memories continue to change.

The president announces Cyborg's failure to unite the world's superheroes and the U.S. enters into the Atlantean-Amazon war. Flash, Batman, Cyborg and Element Woman break down the door in need of the Marvel Family's help and Batman asks Billy to use his lightning to prevent Flash's memories from changing even further. The group hears of the failed air assault on England due to the Amazons' Invisible Plane air force. Hal Jordan is the first casualty, and a giant Atlantean-generated tidal wave threatens the rest of New Themyscira. Flash tells Batman that if he fails to stop Thawne, the world will destroy itself. Despite reservations, Batman joins Flash as the group heads off to New Themyscira. Enchantress joins them en route. Wonder Woman and Aquaman are fighting one-on-one until Flash and his team arrive.

The Marvel Family transform into Captain Thunder, also transforming Tawky Tawny. Captain Thunder attacks Wonder Woman and appears to be winning until Enchantress reveals herself as the Amazon spy in the Resistance and uses her magic to restore the Marvel Family to their mortal forms. Penthesilea (who was secretly one of the conspirators of the Atlanteans-Amazons war, along with Orm) kills Billy Batson, causing a massive explosion that cripples the opposing forces.

In the wake of the devastation, Thawne appears in front of Flash.[9] The Reverse-Flash reveals to Allen that he himself created the Flashpoint timeline after he traveled back in time to stop the former from killing his mother. Barry pulled the entire Speed Force into himself to stop Thawne, transforming the timeline by shattering the history of his allies. Thawne resets Barry's internal vibrations, enabling him to remember this. According to Thawne, these actions transformed him into a living paradox, no longer requiring Barry to exist and allowing him to kill the Flash without erasing his own existence. Thawne continues to taunt Barry with this knowledge until Batman kills him with a sword. As the fight continues, Superman arrives and begins to aid the heroes, first by landing hard enough to crush the Enchantress under his feet. Thomas insists that Barry put history back to normal to undo the millions of deaths. Meanwhile Cyborg detects seismic activity which he claims could destroy the world and waves start to approach. Now knowing the point of divergence, the Flash restores the timeline. As he enters the timestream, a dying Thomas thanks him for giving his son a second chance and gives Barry a letter addressed to Bruce. Barry then meets with his mother and bids a tearful farewell to her.

Traveling back in time, Barry merges with his earlier self during the attempt to stop Thawne. While traveling through time, Barry realizes he can see three different timelines — DC (New Earth), Vertigo (Earth-13), and WildStorm (Earth-50). A mysterious hooded figure (later reveals to be a cursed immortal Pandora) tells him that the world was split into three to weaken them for an impending threat, and must now be reunited to combat it. The DC, Vertigo, and Wildstorm universes are then merged, creating a brand new DC Universe. Barry then wakes up in a similar manner to the beginning of Flashpoint, also retaining all his memories from the alternate timeline. Believing that everything is over, Barry remembers Thomas' letter and gives it to Bruce, who is still the Batman in this timeline. Bruce, deeply touched by his father's sacrifice to ensure his son's life, tears up after reading the letter and expresses gratitude to Barry for informing him of the events that transpired before the timeline was reset.[10]

Main characters[edit]

Titles[edit]

  • Preludes
    • Time Masters: Vanishing Point #1–6
    • The Flash #8–12
  • Flashpoint Main Series
    • Flashpoint #1–5
  • One-shots
    • Flashpoint: Grodd of War #1, written by Sean Ryan and drawn by Ug Guara with cover by Francis Manapul
    • Flashpoint: Reverse-Flash #1, written by Scott Kolins and drawn by Joel Gomez with cover by Ardian Syaf and Vicente Cifuentes
    • Flashpoint: Green Arrow Industries #1, written by Pornsak Pichetshote and drawn by Mark Castiello with cover by Viktor Kalvachev
    • Flashpoint: The Canterbury Cricket #1, written by Mike Carlin and drawn by Rags Morales with cover by Rags Morales

Collected editions[edit]

The series is collected into a number of volumes:

  • Flashpoint (collects Flashpoint #1–5, 176 pages, softcover, March 13, 2012, ISBN 1-4012-3338-4 hardcover, October 2011, ISBN 1-4012-3337-6)
  • Flashpoint: The World of Flashpoint Featuring The Flash (collects Grodd Of War #1, Kid Flash Lost #1-3, Legion Of Doom #1-3, Reverse Flash #1 And Citizen Cold #1-3, 256 pages, paperback, March 2012, ISBN 1-4012-3408-9)
  • Flashpoint: The World of Flashpoint Featuring Wonder Woman (collects Emperor Aquaman #1-3, Outsider #1-3, Lois Lane And The Resistance #1-3 And Wonder Woman And The Furies #1-3, 272 pages, paperback, March 2012, ISBN 1-4012-3410-0)
  • Flashpoint: The World of Flashpoint Featuring Superman (collects World Of Flashpoint #1-3, Booster Gold #44-47, The Canterbury Cricket #1 And Project Superman #1-3, 256 pages, paperback, March 2012, ISBN 1-4012-3434-8)
  • Flashpoint: The World of Flashpoint Featuring Batman (collects Batman: Knight Of Vengeance #1-3, Deadman And The Flying Graysons #1-3, Deathstroke And The Curse Of The Ravager #1-3 And Secret Seven #1-3, 272 pages, paperback, March 2012, ISBN 1-4012-3405-4)
  • Flashpoint: The World of Flashpoint Featuring Green Lantern (collects Hal Jordan #1-3, Abin Sur - The Green Lantern #1-3, Frankenstein And The Creatures Of The Unknown #1-3, and Green Arrow Industries #1, 224 pages, paperback, March 2012, ISBN 1-4012-3406-2)

The prelude titles were also collected:

  • The Flash Volume 2: The Road to Flashpoint (collects The Flash vol. 3 #8–12, 128 pages, hardcover, October 2011, ISBN 1-4012-3279-5)
  • Time Masters: Vanishing Point (collects Time Masters: Vanishing Point #1–6, 144 pages, paperback, April 2011, ISBN 1-4012-3047-4)

In other media[edit]

  • Alternate skins inspired by Flashpoint are available for Batman, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, and Deathstroke in Injustice: Gods Among Us as downloadable content.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Flashpoint Thursday Noon Eastern Edition, Live from ComicsPro at DC's The Source blog". Dcu.blog.dccomics.com. 2010-04-21. Retrieved 2011-02-11. 
  2. ^ a b "Flashpoint Friday: Everything Will Change in a Flash at DC's The Source blog". Dcu.blog.dccomics.com. 2011-01-28. Retrieved 2011-02-11. 
  3. ^ "Flash Preview". Retrieved 2011-06-20. 
  4. ^ Johns, Geoff (w). Flashpoint 1 (May 2011), DC Comics
  5. ^ Azzarello, Brain (w). Flashpoint: Batman – Knight of Vengeance 2 (June 2011), DC Comics
  6. ^ Azzarello, Brain (w). Flashpoint: Batman – Knight of Vengeance 3 (July 2011), DC Comics
  7. ^ Johns, Geoff (w). Flashpoint 2 (June 2011), DC Comics
  8. ^ Johns, Geoff (w). Flashpoint 3 (July 2011), DC Comics
  9. ^ Johns, Geoff (w). Flashpoint 4 (Early August 2011), DC Comics
  10. ^ Johns, Geoff (w). Flashpoint 5 (August 2011), DC Comics
  11. ^ "DC DC Rolls Out "Flashpoint" Mini Creative Teams". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 2011-04-02. 
  12. ^ Renaud, Jeffrey (May 27, 2011). "FLASHPOINT FACTS: Lemire Bolts Frankenstein into "Flashpoint"". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved September 1, 2011. 
  13. ^ a b Campbell, Josie (April 29, 2011). "FLASHPOINT FACTS: DnA Takes On "Lois Lane" and "Wonder Woman"". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  14. ^ McMillan, Graeme (April 25, 2012). "Batman Voice Actor Kevin Conroy Spills DC's Potential Animated 'Flashpoint' Plans". ComicsAlliance
  15. ^ http://www.worldsfinestonline.com/2013/02/21/warner-home-video-issues-press-release-new-images-from-superman-unbound/
  16. ^ "Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on Bones, Once, Homeland, Blacklist, Haven, Reign, TVD, Sleepy Hollow and More". TV Line. September 5, 2014. Retrieved September 5, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Grant Gustin on 'The Flash': "My Favorite Character That I'll Ever Get to Play"". The Hollywood Reporter. August 18, 2014. Retrieved August 18, 2014.