Flash Fridays – #205 May 1971

Sep 14, 2018

Issue #205 is another Flash summer annual with reprints of issues already covered here. The exceptions are a Golden Age Flash story and a Johnny Quick tale. These Golden Age stories were always a real treat to come across because, unlike today when publishers have pretty much strip-mined the past and reprinted almost every older super hero that you’d want to see (along with a few you wish you hadn’t seen), those older stories came from what seemed like a long lost mysterious era, which it really was to us children of the Silver Age. There was very little access to that material because there was no internet and no comics shops. This is why The Flash #123 with the appearance the original Flash was such a bombshell because it opens things up to a world I didn’t know existed. I know the Golden Age Flash was mentioned in the Silver Age Flash origin story, but if you never saw that issue when it came out…

So these reprints in the Flash Annuals were a little peek into that earlier era. The Flash story is penciled by Carmine Infantino in a still developing style that would have been unrecognizable if not for the fact that he and inker Bernard Sachs were credited on the splash page. His Milton Caniff/Noel Sickles influences are readily apparent and, seeing this work, it’s no surprise that Caniff once approached him for help with the art chores on Steve Canyon. It’s still quite a long ways from his Silver Age style. The artist Ralph Mayo who was likewise credited on the splash of the Johnny Quick tale is totally unfamiliar to me. No writer credits are given although I suspect the Flash story was a Gardner Fox job (I know I could probably go to the Grand Comics Database and look it up, but that’s work and the charge of this blog is to have fun). Speaking of which, these stories were so fun to see that I hardly felt gypped have to pay twenty-five cents for a book with stories that I’d already read. Little did I realize that I’d be buying them all over again down the road as Archive, Showcase Presents and finally (hopefully finally) the beautiful Omnibus editions. Who knew?


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