Image: DC Comics

The Flash has one of the best rogues’ galleries in comics, but how do you find ways to keep these characters fresh? Joshua Williamson has been writing this series for nearly 60 issues, and for his most recent extended storyline, he’s embracing cosmic forces to give Flash’s villains a dramatic power upgrade. The events of Dark Nights: Metal and “Flash War” have unleashed seven new interdimensional energies to go along with the Flash’s Speed Force, and the Rogues have become the conduits. Trickster turned into a Hulk-like monster when he was possessed by the Strength Force, and now Heatwave has gained psychic powers after being taken over by the Sage Force.

This exclusive preview of this week’s The Flash #57 shows The Flash and Detective Burns psychically trapped in a maze of fire created by Heatwave, who has morphed into a giant engulfed in blue flame. Artist Scott Kolins has a deep connection to The Flash as the main artist for Geoff Johns’ run on the Wally West series, and these pages highlight how well he depicts speed and spectacle to reinforce the heightened stakes of Williamson’s story. Luis Guerrero’s colors deliver nonstop heat with a predominantly warm palette, and the cool coloring of Heatwave’s current state adds visual contrast to the page to prevent the art from becoming too uniform.

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