THE FLASH #62, unfortunately, adds nothing interesting to the mix. It tells a formulaic story that’s been done multiple times before and doesn’t build upon any of the tropes used. Christian Duce and Luis Guerrero’s character designs are interesting, though. However, it’s not enough for me to recommend this issue.
72 %
Disappointing and Formulaic

Barry Allen teams up with a new Sage Force wielder named Psych in THE FLASH #62. Psych explains that he’s an ARGUS agent who needs to break into a casino to get intel, but he might not be all that he seems. Joshua Williamson adds in some interesting elements to another rather formulaic plot. It’s becoming a pattern with this series, where every arc seems to start off strong, then dip in the middle. There’s nothing bad about the writing in this issue; it just feels very uninspired. I’m hoping that the ending of this arc redeems the rather dull middle parts. Christian Duce’s art, combined with Luis Guerrero’s coloring, looks amazing, as always, though. Unfortunately, it’s not enough to make this issue all that memorable.

WARNING: Potential spoilers for THE FLASH #62 are below!

Psych-Out in THE FLASH #62

In the last issue, Barry came to the sovereign nation of Zandia, a land occupied by criminals, to find the new Sage Force user. He had to go undercover with Iris so that he wouldn’t be immediately attacked as the Flash. The couple then happened to come face-to-face with the user, Psych, who nearly blew Barry’s cover after reading his mind. However, he then said he’s the Flash’s biggest fan.

In THE FLASH #62, Psych explains his origin to Flash and Iris. He claims that he gained his powers randomly one night, burning down his home along with nearly hurting himself. He says that ARGUS saved him and then enlisted him to become their spy because of his new telepathic powers. They sent him to Zandia in order to gain intel on criminal mastermind Roulette’s various illegal casinos around the world.

THE FLASH #62 page 1. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Psych asks for the Flash’s help, but Iris has reservations about the Sage Force user. Flash still agrees and, not long after going undercover at one of Roulette’s casinos, Psych proves Iris correct. He blows the Flash’s cover in order to create a distraction so he can read Roulette’s mind. The Flash makes quick work of the various C-list villains at the casino, and Psych gains all the information he needs. Iris then uncovers some intel of her own about Psych. It turns out he was never an agent, but rather a blackmailer who stole villains’ secrets in order to make money. That’s when Psych reveals he sold Flash and Iris out. But to who? You’ll have to read THE FLASH #62 to find out!

Déjà Vu in THE FLASH #62

Williamson has a great knack for characterization in this series, especially for Flash and Iris. His dialogue game is also pretty strong most times. That’s definitely true in THE FLASH #62, especially whenever Flash and Iris banter. He gives them some amazing chemistry.

Unfortunately, where this issue goes wrong is in the plot. It’s pretty formulaic, especially for a superhero book. For one, the “superheroes go undercover in a sovereign, supervillain-filled nation” trope has appeared multiple times before. Just look at Marvel’s Bagalia, where superheroes went undercover in two separate books, and it was the main premise of one of those two (SECRET AVENGERS and AVENGERS UNDERCOVER). Those aren’t the only examples of the trope, either. On top of this, the old “double-crossing hero” chestnut is reopened here.

My problem isn’t with reusing tropes. If that was my main issue, I wouldn’t enjoy any superhero book. No, my problem is with the fact that Williamson doesn’t do much to build upon these tropes. It doesn’t feel like he added anything to Iris and Barry going undercover to make it too unique. They go undercover, then their cover’s blown and they have to fight villains. That’s about it. I’m also disappointed that there was nothing more to Psych than his being a selfish jerk. This is the second time another “Force” user ended up becoming not what they seemed. I didn’t like it with Fuerza, and I’m disappointed it happened again with Psych. I’m hoping Williamson has something big up his sleeve for the ending of this arc, since that’s happened with prior ones.

A Unique Design

Duce and Guerrero give Psych a unique, strange design in THE FLASH #62. It shouldn’t work, but somehow, they pull it off. Psych’s outfit consists of a full-body jumpsuit, a goofy looking helmet, and a white blazer. The latter part just shouldn’t work on top of the jumpsuit but, I don’t know why, Duce and Guerrero make it look somewhat natural. I think it’s because of how subdued the colors are on Psych’s outfit. Guerrero gives him a dark blueish-purple jumpsuit with some light blue highlights. His black, white and red helmet matches well with his white blazer. It’s also the type of outfit a seedy, untrustworthy conman would think is cool. It fits the character quite well.

THE FLASH #63 pages 2 & 3. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Final Thoughts: THE FLASH #62

THE FLASH #62 is disappointing, plain and simple. It tells a very formulaic story without much new characterization added to the mix. I honestly wouldn’t recommend this installment, but I’m hoping that the ending of this arc redeems the past two issues.

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