The Flash #17 marks the end of the five-part Gorilla Warfare story arc! In this issue we get an epic showdown between Grodd and The Flash that takes place within the Speed Force to determine who is “The Chosen One.” The issue also further complicates the love life of Barry Allen and introduces a new foe before it is all said and done. Add to this more stunning art from Manapul and Buccellato and you can mark down the Grodd arc as a success!
The issue starts out with an interesting page that takes us back to first encounter between Grodd and The Flash, which saw The Flash leave Grodd buried under a pile of rubble. The page gives a brief look at how Grodd rose to power after the Elders betrayed him. The entire arc it seemed as though the Apes were forced into fighting for Grodd and didn’t really respect or believe in him. It was kind of odd to see this first page show that they did believe in him and an issue dedicated to his point of view could have been a strong way to develop and build Grodd as more than just an advanced Ape who uses his people to steal The Flash’s position as The Chosen One. Grodd seemed more like a one-dimensional mad man (or ape) who cared about nothing other than take down The Flash. It just seemed like adding this in now is a bit of a missed opportunity.
The epic conclusion of The Flash and Grodd delivers ten fold. We have seen The Flash and Grodd beat the living hell out of each other countless times so the duo of Manapul and Buccellato had to reach deep into their bag of tricks to make this battle worthy of a finale. The duo succeeds in this task as a trampling wooly mammoth deals the final blow! Yes, the wooly mammoth that had been tormenting Iris and company has actually been a brilliantly planted plot tool all leading to this moment. Kudos to Buccellato and Manapul for bringing back the integrity of this ancient beast after all the wrongs done to the mammoth in 10,000 BC. Thank you!
This issue also focuses on the women of Barry Allen’s life as Barry seemed to have a spark with Iris but he also seems content with Patty. The love triangle should make for some strong drama. Add in that Patty and a number of others know the secret identity of The Flash how will things play out once the dust of the gorilla invasion settles? It should make for a fun ride and add an extra level of depth to our hero!
With Grodd out of the picture for the time being Manapul and Buccellato waste no time in introducing our next villain, a choice that should make many-o-geek squeal with excitement! If you have been following this series, want to see the new villain, or admire the incredible beat known as the wooly mammoth, do yourselves a favor and grab The Flash #17 next time you are in your comic shop.