Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Fast Talk: Super Speed Limit


Super Speed Limit: Forget about the complexities of Constitutional Law or Civil Procedure. True jurisdictive dilemmas result when mad science and the legal system collide! "The Mightiest Punch of All Time," a Silver Age classic by John Broome and Carmine Infantino, features one of The Flash's most absurd and, I would say, delightful plot twists. Professor Zoom has once again used his Cosmic Treadmill to travel to the present-day, and he's brought along some truly threatening technology. Using a beam of intense super-speed radiation that inexplicably possesses hypnotic properties, the Reverse Flash is capable of controlling the minds of unsuspecting citizens! How does the futuristic felon plan to make creative use of this incredible power in order to devastate his mortal enemy? By influencing municipal ordinances, of course! Yes, Zoom toys with the thoughts of the Central City Municipal Council and, as a result, from that day forward "it is strictly forbidden to travel at super-speed within the limits of Central City!" Naturally, the law-abiding scarlet speedster is forced to comply with the newly invoked super speed limit and spends the rest of this airy adventure walking! I'll have to consult a particularly bright and particularly open-minded law student on the legality of the council's decision. Nevertheless, in the wake of the unforgettable murder and atrocities that the deranged Reverse Flash would later commit, can you imagine a day and age when Eobard Thawne's evil was restricted to mischievous attempts at taunting the fastest man alive by tampering with local politics? Something tells me that the supervillain's future plans for Barry Allen will be far more malicious.

Issue: The Flash #153 (June 1965)

5 comments:

rob! said...

The ACLU is really busy in the DC Universe.

papa zero said...

I guess it's just me - but there was something satisfying about silver age Flash villains going out of their way just to be complete assholes (as opposed to always attempting to murder, steal, conquer the earth, bla bla bla...)

Dixon said...

Good call, Rob! I'd say you're right about that. Just imagine the headaches brought about by the DC Universe's many mischievous supervillains!

And it's not just you, Papa Zero. I agree completely, and it's one of the reasons for this particular posting. The Rogues have changed considerably over the decades, all in an effort to keep pace with the tone of modern comics. Reading these Silver Age stories offers me a sense of comfort and satisfaction that's difficult to find in comics these days.

liabrown said...

That's why I enjoy reading Silver Age back issues so much, Dixon, even though I didn't start reading Flash comics until a few years ago. They're silly and FUN.

Dixon said...

Absolutely, Lia. And there's something great to be gained from all that fun and silliness!