BHOC: FLASH #242

The mailman brought along the next issue of THE FLASH to my door, always a welcome occurrence. This one had an Ernie Chua/Chan cover that was actually pretty good. I’m guessing that Carmine Infantino did the sketch for this one, as it seems like his sort of layout.

The story this issue was fine but pretty forgettable. Before pulling it out again to write about it, I could have told you a little bit about what had gone on, but most of the details had been lost to time. The previous issue had been similarly forgettable, but at least that story had featured Mirror master and Heat Wave, recurring Flash foes. This one had new villains that never made a follow-up appearance.

The issue opens with Flash arriving at a bank hold-up being perpetrated by the Electric Gang, a trio of thieves who are head-to-toe covered in electrical current. After a quick scuffle with the Flash, they escape through the phone system in the manner of the Atom. As Flash helps the patrons to recover, a guard makes mention of his battle with the gang three days previous–a battle that Flash has completely forgotten about. 

Afterward, Barry meets up with Iris to commiserate with her and discovers that she’s gone back to work with Picture News, another development he’s forgotten about. Additionally, he sees Iris sneaking away to a doctor without telling him, causing him to come to the conclusion that iris is pregnant! So distracting is Iris’s behavior that barry misses spotting Sam Scudder, the Mirror Master, making a legal withdrawal from the bank, and he similarly overlooks the Weather Wizard blowing into town.

Meanwhile, iris has been doing some detective work, and she’s worked out that the Electric Gang is actually a trio working for the Ace Cleaning Company. When they’re brought in to clean a place, they coat the environment with a compound that allows them to perform their electrical feats by using the spectators as living batteries. Iris trails them to their next job–missing the arrival of Captain Boomerang in town–and has treated her own shoes with a counter-agent that short-circuits their powers.

Using the last of their powers, the Electric Gang attempts to kill Iris for her interference, but Flash arrives in time to defeat them. Turns out that Iris’ trips to the doctor were for treatments to negate the Gang’s electric field and not because of an impending baby at all–Cary Bates, you big tease! Speaking of teases, the issue closes with the three newly-arrived villains joined by three of their fellows: Heat Wave, Captain Cold and the Trickster. And we learn that they’ve assembled to mourn the death of one of their fellow Rogues. But who? Continued next time!

Then it’s on to Green Lantern, who with his alien pet Itty is continuing to pursue the Ravagers of Olys as they attack yet another planet. This time, they’ve released an agent that increases the size of the insects and shrinking the mammals, causing chaos to the food chain of this world. GL is able to cleanse the world of this agent, restoring the natural order. But the Ravager he captures tells him that even now, his fellows are preparing for their final attack: this one on the Earth itself!

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