So as a not-so-obvious secret... I'm a huge Flash fanatic. And I always try to think of new looks for the Flash characters (as well as story ideas!) but I rarely have the guts to put them up. So hey, today? I say screw that. Here's my take on the Flash and several of the supporting cast!
First: The Flash (Wally West): I like Barry, but Wally's the Flash I grew up with. And he's the focus of my take on the Flash. Barry's been gone for a few years, and Wally's just finally getting a grip on his life. And just when he can start to complain things are going too slow, they're about to pick up very quickly... in the form of the return of the Rogues! Flash has a good costume already, so it's tough to think of changes to it. I just stylized the boots a bit, made some minor adjustments to his lightning bolts and earpieces, and I think he's good to go.
Max Mercury: Wally had plenty of being told what to do when Barry was around. So when Max Mercury, "Zen Master" of the speed force shows up, Wally thinks he's in for a lot of the same and blows him off. But Max may have more to teach Wally than he realizes... not just about his powers, but his past and future as well. One thing that's always bugged me about Max is he doesn't look like some wise teacher. He looks like a bigger weirdo hero than Jay Garrick. So I opted for a... well... actual "zen master" look for him. I like the idea of him running around barefoot because he'd just be THAT hardcore. He's like Yoda from the first Star Wars trilogy... you don't have to see him fight. But you just know he means serious business.
Second: Captain Cold. Leonard Snart was ready to give up after Barry vanished, but something has brought him out of retirement. What is this new drive that Cold has to bring the Rogues back? I like my Cold more focused and smarter than he's sometimes portrayed. I liken him to say... Hannibal from the A-Team. He's a leader with a solid plan, and it's going to unfold one way or another. So let's face it: Cold does NOT need the parka. But he also doesn't need to go full-sleeveless ala new 52. My Cold sticks with a warm but badass jacket, a hood, and his protective glasses. But let's just touch them up a bit.
Mirror Master (Evan McCulloch): Scudder was rumored to have vanished into the Mirror world, and many believed it... then hitman Evan McCulloch comes across his equipment, as well as inventing all sorts of wicked new tricks for it. His only real weakness is motivation, using the awesome gear to simply score money for drugs. And when Cold gets a hold of him to clean him up and focus his mind... well... he'll become a real villain worthy of the Flash. I was a big fan of Mirror Master's design in "Justice League: Doom" and decided to push that further. Instead of wielding a gun, all his weapons and tools are built into his suit. Where will his next trick come from? Keep looking in that mirror.
Third: Heat Wave. After Barry's disappearance and the splitting of the Rogues, Mick took a dangerous road: He became a good guy. Or as good as he could be. Even on the straight and narrow, he finds himself slipping back into the Rogue life when he feels the need to look at just one more pretty fire. With Heat Wave, it was a tough choice to give him one large flamethrower instead of his flame pistols. But the pistols just aren't stylish anymore. Otherwise, I decided to give him a Firefighter-type mask, which I think works well.
Trickster (James Jesse): An old friend of Wally's, James took to the bad crowd when Wally took to the good. Now James rules the streets, wanted for vandalism and horrible practical jokes of all kinds (when he's not throwing down with his rival, Axel). And when the Rogues give him the chance to make history, the Trickster's jokes and antics may take on a much more lethal tone. I opted for a streetwise, graffiti artist type look with Trickster. And even though he is a lot younger and in all likelihood should be Axel at this point in the timeline... I just hate Axel. SO much.
Next: Weather Wizard. I'm actually going with a mesh of the classic and new 52 origin for him, where he's kind of an up-and-coming crime lord, but needs a little help. Turning to his famous scientist brother for help (who shoots him down) Marden kills him, taking his greatest invention: A combination "wand" and harness that allows weather control! He may have put it away when Barry left, but when Cold drags him back into the game... I always found the idea that a simple wand lets him do all that odd, so I decided to make it a whole system of a harness, a glove, and a wand which are all needed. The harness mimics the yellow stripes of his costume, but otherwise keeps the jacket of his new 52 design. And... eh. I like the idea of him being hispanic.
Captain Boomerang (Digger Harkness): Fresh out of finishing a stint with the Suicide Squad (and some remarkably close calls on the battlefield) Boomerang is ready to call it quits. Even when Cold wants him back in the game, Boomerang is hesitant... until Cold lets him in on a little secret: He may have a son. I wanted to go with more of a special military forces look with Boomerang. A tactical vest, combat boots... this looks like a guy who if he's a projectile weapons expert, I'll buy it.
Then: The Top (Roscoe Dillon): Mayoral candidate Roscoe Dillon's life was ruined back when Barry was the Flash, both by shutting down his crooked campaign and causing an accident that trapped Dillon in the speed force for a bit. He emerged with power drawn from the speed force, but not nearly enough for him. He could only spin at super speed, and would clash with Barry several times. With his disappearance, the Top had gone into a miserable retirement. But Wally's return sparks that hatred in him, along with something else... new powers, allowing him to affect the minds of other people. The Top, I've always wondered how he's not connected to the speed force since what he does involves super speed. So I decided to give him a costume very reminiscent of Flash's, while trying to keep it still looking like himself. I'm also ditching his top toys- they're dumb. Know what's cool? His mind powers that nobody ever remembers.
Pied Piper: Hartley's origin is much the same. Born deaf, but fixed... only to be able to hear all the awful things people have to say about him and his lifestyle. This would lead to him crafting a bunch of sonic-themed weapons and do battle with the Flash. But the Rogues dissolving after Barry's disappearance makes him take a long hard look at his life. As a close friend of both Wally and James Jesse, Hartley will be forced to choose he will be. Piper's costume from his Geoff Johns run is still great. I just thought I'd opt for something more formal-looking from his torso down.
Finally: Zoom (Hunter Zolomon): When Barry disappeared, so did Thawne, much to everyone's relief. And things are going fine for Central City Police for a while, they eventually take a pretty drastic turn when criminal psychologist and Flash's ally Hunter Zolomon is crippled by the Rogues. Distraught by Flash's refusal to help him get better, Hunter takes the matter into his own hands, causing a terrible accident which transforms him into the new Reverse Flash. But he doesn't want Wally dead. He just wants to make him a better hero, no matter how many close friends and family he has to hurt to do it. Not much to say here, just flipped Flash's colors.
Black Flash: Who is he? Why is he here? And did Wally REALLY see him when Barry disappeared years ago? So what does it mean when Wally sees him now... ? Like Zoom, Black Flash is just another flip of Flash's colors. I made his costume a little shredded and thought the shattering effect on his logo looked cool.