Welcome to the latest installment in our annotations of the collected edition of The Trial of the Flash! We analyzed related stories leading up to the summer 2011 release of Showcase Presents: The Trial of the Flash. In addition, we interviewed author Cary Bates about the buildup and the Trial itself, plus showed you what wasn’t included in the collection. Are you ready, Batman?
IN THIS ISSUE: Carmine Infantino vs. Dave Gibbons - you decide! Plus, Legal…Vultures?
Links to original artwork, scans and research are included throughout this post. For legal analysis of the story by Bob Ingersoll, go here. Tom vs. Flash took on this issue here. See you after the jump!
COVER by Carmine Infantino and Dick Giordano. Here is this month’s corresponding Green Lantern #175 cover, by Dave Gibbons. Flash and Green Lantern co-starred in each-others books this month.
PG 1: Flash was in Florida at the end of last issue, following a visit to Gorilla City and a super-speed rescue at sea, hence the palm trees.
PG 2 & 3: Here’s another video of an explosion where you can see the shockwave, for super-speed reference.
Here is the original art for page four from Comic Art Fans. It appears the same collector has page two at his personal page as part of a substantial Infantino collection.
PG 6 & 7: Rainbow Raider suits up. The Raider was last seen in the pages of Flash in issue #299, the second part of a villain two-fer with The Shade. After that story, in the pages of Brave and the Bold #194 (by Mike W. Barr with art by Infantino), Raider and Dr. X/Dr. Double-X “switched heroes” to face off against Batman and Flash, respectively. That is likely why the editor’s note at the bottom of page 7 is incomplete/incorrect. The Brave and the Bold issue is a nice bonus to Infantino’s second Flash run, along with DC Comics Presents # 73 and Tales of the Teen Titans #49.
The two-parter featuring The Shade in Flash #298 - 299 features great art by Infantino and Bob Smith, and some cool black-and-white gimmickry.
PG 9 & 10 : Flash is pretty short with the nurse in the first panel. Bates peppers Flash’s dialog with signs of stress as the story progresses. This page also has shady lawyer N.D. Redik circling in an aircraft, watching the news on the health of Flash’s injured lawyer and swooping in on the apparent vacancy on Flash’s defense. Redik pulls strings with a national newspaper columnist to gain a public “endorsement”.
PG 11 & 12: Captain Frye dropped the missing persons flyers last issue. Flash is curt with the telegram delivery man. “C. Horton” is Flash’s lawyer’s law partner and the owner of the house Flash has been using as a “temporary headquarters”.
PG 15: Visit this site to read about Melvin Belli, known as the “Father of Demonstrative Evidence”. Here is a video of F. Lee Bailey. Besides being famous defense lawyers, Belli and Bailey were also controversial public figures and were seemingly chosen to provide Redik with an level of instant characterization by association.
PG 18 - 20 : The Brave and the Bold issue mentioned above is correctly noted here.
Pages 18 - 21 of this issue feature the same script as pages 8 - 11 in Green Lantern #175. Green Lantern Hal Jordan had just returned from a lengthy period in outer space. This fact is also why Tomar-Re was sent by the Guardians in Jordan’s stead to alert Flash of Professor Zoom’s return back in issue #319.
Each issue credits only its own writer, Bates and GL's Len Wein (former Flash editor) with the full script. Dave Gibbons and Carmine Infantino each give their own interpretation and they are fun to compare (below, numbered as Flash/Green Lantern, from original issues):
Page 18/8: Infantino / Gibbons
Page 19/9: Infantino / Gibbons
Page 20/10: Infantino (original, from Comic Art Fans) / Gibbons
Page 21/11: Infantino / Gibbons (original, from Comic Art Fans)
Which version do you like most? Let us know in the comments, and we’ll announce the winner of this matchup of masters in the next installment.
Both artists approach it from unique perspectives and disparate styles, focused on their respective stars. The Green Lantern issue will be reprinted for the first time in the upcoming Green Lantern: Sector 2814 collection of Gibbons’ work on that title.
PG 22 & 23: The matter-of-fact second panel shows some of the deterioration of the Barry Allen identity. Big reveal: C. Horton is a lady lawyer! 1984!
See you next time!