This issue does a much better and more integrated job of merging some familiar Flash super villain action with the ongoing hunt for the killer of Iris West. As I mentioned in my last post, the editorial/writer braintrust seems to not want to lose the familiar and admittedly colorful aspect of the Flash’s Rogues Gallery while also pursuing a longer and more intricately plotted story arc. During the battle with Boomerang, the Flash learns that several members of the Rogues gallery were at the masquerade ball where Iris died. Said information being at the forefront of the Flash’s mind, he leaves without even taking the good Captain to the police.
Back at the lab, Barry and Get. Frank Curtis determine that it was the costumed guest dressed as the Sandman who used his gun to inject Barry with angel dust. Curtis has also uncovered the fact that the experiments Clive Yorkin underwent actually enhanced his criminal tendencies rather than doing the opposite. We then flash (cute, huh?) to Yorkin entering a movie theater showing a horror film, but the real horror is caused by Yorkin who trashes the place. He also uses his touch to turn a couple in the theater catatonic (and blue). The Flash checks out the scene at the theater, but seeing that the police have things handled, heads off to another robbery, this time by Heat Wave. As they battle, Yorkin shows up and turns heat wave blue and catatonic with his touch. While the Flash attends to the shattered Heat Wave, Yorkin escapes. The Flash takes off after him only to be ambushed by Yorkin. As we end, the monster has his hands around the Flash’s neck as he slowly is doing to the Flash what he did to the others in another cliffhanger.
Had I been following the book closely back in the day, I’m sure I, like the Flash would have found myself in the grip of this story. But, at the time, I was wrapped up with the beginning of my second comic strip, John Darling and I was more occupied than ever. You can read more about this in the Match to Flame posts on this blog. And you can see what I was working on in the John Darling posts. Suffice to say, they were busy busy days.