Monday, 8 July 2013

Monday Memories #27 - Flash: Terminal Velocity

Each Monday this year I'll be taking a look back at a random comic, prestige format issue, graphic novel or collection of reprints from amongst my 3,000 or so comics that date from 1962 to 2003 - I figured anything in the last ten years would be too recent to hark back to.

The comics are chosen completely at random and apart from a four week lead-in period, even I don't know what I'll be looking at in the weeks to come!


When I picked this trade paperback from my shelf and started reading through it to remind myself of the storyline (big breath: Flash is presumed dead at the start, returns only to face a threat to the life of his wife Linda from terrorist and all-round nut-bag Kobra, and tries to train Impulse to take his place having seen his own demise in a vision from the future - phew!) I had no idea of how this would make me feel.

I've never been the biggest Flash fan - I pick up the collections every now and then and while I've enjoyed them, and his appearances in titles I do get, I've never felt the urge to pick up the ongoing monthlies. Obviously, I'm aware that Barry Allen returned to the role a few years ago following Final Crisis, a role which had ably been filled by Wally West for twenty-odd years or so since Crisis on Infinite Earths. Then, with Flashpoint and the New 52 reboot, the only Flash we've had is Barry; even Kid Flash is and always has been Bart Allen. Despite the vociferous cries of fans, Wally is nowhere to be seen in the new DCU.

So, sad to say, it's going to be a long, long time before we see a scene like this:

Welcomed with open arms upon his return. That's what I'd like to see at some point, but I'm not holding my breath.

Nor, sadly, am I expecting to see this:

Flash; Max Mercury; Impulse; Jay Garrick; Jesse Quick; Johnny Quick. A veritable who's who of speedsters. As far as I know, we're currently at 50% of that line-up, but feel free to tell me I'm wrong.

And you know what else I'd like to see, and not just limited to Flash? Something like this which takes place after Wally's been absorbed by the Speed Force but somehow made his way back in order to save his wife, Linda:

Is it so difficult for our heroes in the New 52 to have a stable, loving relationship? Can we not have two people who love each other actually be happy together? Carol Ferris and Hal Jordan, I'm looking at you.

I've applauded DC's efforts with the New 52 on the whole; it was a brave thing to do that risked alienating a lot of long time fans but gave them licence to try some new and interesting things. Some worked, some didn't, but at least they tried. I'm not one who wants to reset the clock, ignore everything that happened in the last ten or fifteen or twenty years and return to the stories of my youth.

But I do wonder why characters with as much history as Wally have to be ignored and left out in the cold.


  1. Yeah exactly. I don't hate them for trying something new, just the way they(Dan Didio and friends) did it. It was unnecessary. Not to mention outside of certain characters, most have been revamped/ret-conned for the worst, like The Creeper, Phantom Stranger, Wonder Girl/Teen Titans in general, Suicide Squad,etc.

    But the successes I guess are Frankenstein, Swamp Thing, Animal Man, Wonder Woman(by Brian Azz of all people) and Jonah Hex.

    And they are trying to turn older villains like the Prankster and Hector Hammond in more credible threats, so there's that.

    But yeah, I miss Wally too. He was the Flash I grew up with. Not having him around or even acknowledged just doesn't right. Sigh.....

    1. Whether the whole Flashpoint/New 52 thing had to happen is another question. I think they just saw it as a chance to do something bold regardless of whether it needed to be done.

      But, like we've both said, there are some good series that have come out of it. I just wish they hadn't thrown the baby out with the bath water.

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