Born and raised in NYC, I moved to Baltimore, Maryland to make a change. I'm an illustrator, writer, blogger, substitute teacher, former optician and lab technician with a Bachelors Degree in Illustration from Maryland Institute College of Art and a Associates Degree in Digital illustration.
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The making of The Flash on The CW is an achievement that will probably be studied by pop-culture creators for quite some time. Here, our Yul Espinosa takes a look at a recent book covering the art that has caught the attention of fans across the world.
The Art and Making of The Flash
For those fans who love costume design and studio work, or are just fans of the CW TV series the Flash, there’s a great book on sale now which would make an excellent holiday gift. The Art and Making of the Flash by Abbie Bernstein is a behind the scenes look of what goes behind the scenes in the studios in Vancouver as well as costume designs and the props. Bernstein who s the author of The art of Mad Max: Fury Road and Serenity: the Official Companian takes us through a nuanced of make-up and what it takes to make those wonderful toys and props. Greg Berlanti who is a life long Flash fan discusses his reasons and love for the character. There are also discussions as well as a foreword by Berlanti of what it took to bring this hero to the small screen. The first section discusses the making of the Flash touching on the spinoff from the Arrow. I find it amusing that Andrew Kriesberg comments that the visual effects is what makes the series work which is rather obvious. Grant Gustin who plays the role of the Flash touches on the chemistry with his fellow actors. The second section of the book covers Heroes and Allies. A lot more focus was made on the costumes heroes than was made on his civilian sidekicks. That should have been the focus as well. The coolest section was the Villains section that included all of the designs, used and unused. The King Shark section was fantastic although I know of a few fans who wished that King Shark had said “Candygram!” (An early Saturday Night Live reference to a skit done by the original SNL cast involving a land Shark trying to fool local residents). Very little focus was made on Multiplex with a brief blurb on how the effect of multiplying was accomplished. The third section focuses on the sets in Vancouver from the exterior of the STAR labs and the particle accelerator to the West family home. The Art Deco designs used for the Flash are a far cry superior to the original sets used in the 1990 Flash series. The final section focuses on toys and gadgets. The Cold Gun and Heatwaves gun are featured prominently as well as the helmet that was torture for the captured Jay Garrick. I’m glad there was a section on Reverse Flash’s ring as well as the Canary Choker Laurel wore on Arrow and the Flash. The detail work is amazing. It does a small focus on the meta human watch and the Reverse Flash’s palm device to access Gideon although I have pet peeve that the time vault was mentioned but Gideon, who was huge part of that show wasn’t mentioned as much. After all, it’s Gideon and the newspaper from the future is the guiding force for the story line.
There was one thing that was absent from the book. It was one of the most important things that makes the Flash who he is and that is the SCRIPTS. The art and making should include the brilliant writers who bring their imaginations and add life to something that could have been lackluster. The Helbing brothers, Kai Wu, and ESPECIALLY Geoff Johns bring life to this show with their keyboards and if it wasn’t for them, none of this would be possible. It’s nice that they’ve added Benjamin Raab to the mix.
I also wish they would have included the directors as well including a focus on Kevin Smith who directed the brilliant Runaway Dinosaur. Also, let’s talk about David Nutter. Nutter was one of the driving forces behind the Flash and also directed the pilot for Arrow. Why isn’t he talked about? Glen Winter, was one of the regular directors for Smallville and deserves a lot of the credit as well as Dermott Downs, Millicent Shelton, Jesse Warn and Ralph Hemecker and many others, who all deserve kudos to the jobs that they do yet it’s mysteriously absent from the book. There should have been more added to this book especially for those aspiring writers who want to get into scriptwriting.
Its been said that less is more. I’m entertained by most of material in this book but I want more.
Yul Espinosa is a Contributor to ComiConverse. Follow him on Twitter: @YulREspinosa
A behind the scenes look at the creative force behind the CW series The Flash. Visually the book is eye candy with all sorts of intricate designs but falls short on other aspects.