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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comics – Day 328

Here is the latest in our year-long look at one cool comic (whether it be a self-contained work, an ongoing comic or a run on a long-running title that featured multiple creative teams on it over the years) a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the comics posted so far!

Today we look at a great one-off issue of Geoff Johns and Scott Kolins’ Flash run, the spotlight on Captain Cold, Flash #182’s “Absolute Zero” (with inks by Dan Panosian).


Captain Cold had generally been treated with a bit more respect than some of the other Rogues over the years, as they all mostly faded into the sort of “we’re embarrassed about the Silver Age villains, even though they are obviously awesome” type of treatment over the years (even Cold was not impervious to this, though, as he had at least one story where he was played totally as a joke).

Geoff Johns, though, brought Cold back as the strong character fans knew he could be (I always look to John Ostrander’s use of Captain Cold as THE portrayal of Captain Cold, and Johns’ version is very close to Ostrander’s…I wonder if that was intentional? Perhaps I should just ask him…).

In Flash #182, Johns gave Cold one of his spotlight issues on the Rogues. Often, these issues would be used to get a fill-in artist on the book, but here, you could tell that the character was important enough to use Kolins on it (and Panosian did a great job on inks).

The issue opens up with a great, dramatic action sequence…

In a nice little retcon, Johns established that the guy who killed Cold’s sister, the Golden Glider, was not, in fact, killed himself. I liked that change – it really did rob Cold of any possible revenge.

In any event, while we see Cold on his mission of revenge, we see flashbacks to his youth with his sister and later his beginnings as a supervillain…

What I liked about the exploration of Cold’s powers was that it never became the drive of the issue – the explanations were there, but they were in the background of what was very clearly a character piece.

Strong work.

And, of course, in the present, Cold’s mission finds itself nearing its end…

If you want to see what happens next (and why wouldn’t you?) either go pick up the Flash #182 or the trade it was reprinted in, Flash: Rogues (is that trade still in print?).


It was a great issue and really sold me on Johns as a solo writer (JSA was a co-written work at the time and was hard to judge). I really wish he’d return to this caliber of writing, because lately he’s seemed more into ideas than character work and I don’t enjoy his writing as much.

I got this Volume of the Flash from issue 1 through to it’s end in the 200s, and was rarely disappointed, this is one of the stand out issues. I always liked the Rogue issues. In fact everytime this volume of Flash is featured in Cool comics I get a warm fuzzy feeling.

It was the last DC book I bought regularly, I just can’t get into Barry Allen as the Flash, I grew up with Wally West and as far as I’m concerned he’s the Flash.

If you liked #182’s Rogue Profile, look for the others (also written by Johns)
#190 – Pied Piper
#197 – Zoom II
#212 – Mirror Master II
#218 – Heat Wave

This was one of the best of Johns run.

For a series that ran over 200 issues it really was outstanding. I honestly can’t think of another series that was anywhere near as reliable that ran for this long.

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