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July 24, 2008


Brian Disco Snell

Bye bye, Wally. Hope the Kid Flash uniform still fits...


Not sure what to think of this -- Wally has always been my Flash, and I've only read Barry stories in scattered reprints. I hope Wally at least sticks around along with Barry and Jay. I trust Johns, so we'll see.


Wally can go and join Kyle and Donna as a Guardian of the Multiverse or whatever they're called. *sigh*

So, who are Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver going to revive next? Martian Manhunter: Rebirth, anyone?

Mark Engblom

Well, keep in mind, guys, that Barry Allen himself was given the ultimate "heave-ho" during Crisis, which followed two or three years of unbearably bad stories in his solo title....so I think it's time to see the guy written right by people who give a rip. I don't think Wally is going anywhere, since Johns has said how much he adores the character...not to mention his history with the Wally West Flash. I don't see Johns tossing Wally in the ditch and driving off.

Bottom line: As I mentioned above, after several years of flubs and mis-starts on the Flash title, it's about time some energy and coherence was brought to the franchise. I think that's something all Flash fans can celebrate.

Oh, and Snell? Looks like the Kid Flash suit is going to Intertia, based on the first issue of "Final Crisis: Rogue's Revenge".

Brian Disco Snell

All I can say is, remember how Kyle got left behind after Green Lantern: Rebirth. Lost his mag, lost his JLA spot, been shuttled around from Ion (and stripped of that, because, well, I don't know) to possessed by Parallax to "Challenger of the Unknown" to one of the thousand non-descript players in GLC. So, given that history, you can see why I'm not sanguine about Wally's future.

Last month at Wizard World Chicago, this was as far as Dan DiDio would go in discussing Wally's future: "Wally will be around. He's part of the Titans team right now, and he'll be part of that team for the foreseeable future."

Woo hoo. Part of the Titans. Just as I predicted months ago. (I also predicted a new name and costume...see if it doesn't happen).


I don't consider myself anti-silver age, I love alot of the Silver Age stuff even though I grew up in the world of post-crisis.

For Barry specifically, he had a wonderful heroic sacrifice, it's pretty much impossible to top, so let him stay dead. "if it ain't broke, don't fix it"

As to the other resurrections and more silver age stuff
Well, it's sort of one of those damned if you do, damned if you don't things.

There are a lot of fans like me who came up in the aftermath of the silver age.
Our first GL was Kyle.
Our first Flash was Barry.
Our major DC teenage team was Young Justice.

So what happens?
Hals back, Kyle is pushed deep into the backround, no solo title even.
Young Justice gets cancelled (and angsted up) so that we can have a new "Teen Titans" title.
Bart (Impulse) never really gets a chance at being Flash so they can bring back Wally, and now bring back Barry.

So, Wally is back, Barry is back, but my favorite speedster ever? He had everything I loved about him changed, and then they killed him.

To us, it's not "Anti-silver age" it's "pro-stuff we loved, and stuff we grew up with"
Which, is often, the same exact attitude of the "Pro-silver age" people.

If DC would allow both to exist (Kyle as a major solo title GL and Hal as one too. Bart still around but maybe as his teen self with Wally and Barry) it wouldn't be a problem.

Mark Engblom

"Woo hoo. Part of the Titans. Just as I predicted months ago. (I also predicted a new name and costume...see if it doesn't happen)."

Oh, I'm certain it will happen. Maybe he could be the new "Max Mercury" or Johnny Quick ("Wally Quick"?).

Or, just to really torture you 90's guys, maybe Wally, Kyle, and Connor Hawke could all go rogue and join Superboy Prime in the Twisted Titans.

Seriously, let's see what Geoff Johns has in store for Wally before we get too worked up over it. Strapping him with two annoying, rapidly-aging kids certainly wasn't a step in the right direction.

Pj Perez

I don't think I'd consider myself among the "anti-Silver Age brigade," but I will say the return of Barry Allen is just one more of a thousand reasons why I can't collect/read/care about DC Comics. I'm giving the recent Batman run a shot, but otherwise, the whole company-wide line is just a giant "f*ck you" to continuity, and yeah, I'm one of those people who likes to dive in and care about what happens to those characters, and when their histories continue to shift, then the caring goes out the window.

Barry's sacrifice in the original "Crisis" went beyond the comic book's events -- it allowed for DC to make itself over into a formidable storytelling force, but apparently DC's editorial attention span is short, and that only lasted about 10 years before they started screwing with everything again.




I'd honestly say Marvel is more the "Screw you continuity" people.

All the mutants introduced in the past few years are now gone?
Iron Man is a fascist?
Everyone is now skrulls?
20 years of Spider-Man growth retconned by a deal with the devil that Pete willingly entered into?

Neither DC are Marvel are great with continuity.

Pat Curley

This is why I stick with the Silver Age stuff. To me, Barry is always the Flash, Wally's always a kid at Blue Valley High School, and Bruce Wayne's not a deranged psychopath. Oh, I do like reading some of the modern adventures and actually enjoyed some of the early issues of the WW Flash series; that whole bit about him needing to eat lots of food to recuperate was pretty cool, although I hated the whole lottery nonsense and his relationships with women left something to be desired.


Personally, I'm not so much against the Silver Age or the return of Barry as I am a proponent of leaving certain, somewhat sacred things in comic-dom alone.

For the last two decades or so, Barry Allen was one of those heroes whose death you didn't touch. His was the heroic sacrifice that was an example to all other heroes in the DCU (plus, with his time-traveling capabilities, he could still pop up from time to time). He, like Thomas and Martha Wayne at DC, Uncle Ben, Gwen Stacy, Harry Osborn (and at one time Norman), and Bucky over at Marvel, were deaths that we could be sure would "stick."

Recent years show us that that's not quite so true anymore. Bucky is back, which from my understanding is working out quite well, and One More Day has brought back Harry Osborn like Norman before him. Suddenly, these few characters whose deaths meant so much that they weren't reverse are...well, being reversed.

I'm not going to get up in arms and say this is a terrible idea, but I AM skeptical. I simply don't want to see Wally West - *my* Flash - put to the sidelines just because the current regime at DC has an affinity for the Silver Age. That said, I'm a big fan of Barry Allen too, and if they can pull this off I'll be happy.

My opinion? Bring back Bart as a teen, and rename the book "Team Flash" or something - a book featuring the Flash (Jay), the Flash (Barry), the Flash (Wally), and Kid Flash (Bart), having both solo and team-up adventures. Written by Geoff Johns or Mark Waid, of course.


Ralph C.

Man, it's tough for any of the long-running comic book characters to keep the thread going on so many decades of continuity. Whenever things are shaken up, there are always going to be disappointed people. For example, I was very disappointed in the "Sins of the Past" story-arc they did in Spider-Man a couple of years ago. To be beholden to as much continuity as there is for characters like Batman, Superman, Spider-Man, the Flash, and so on, is really too much to ask for. I think the best you can ask for is that the core of the characters aren't changed and that any "retconning" stories are well-told. That's all I hope for when things are changed.

Al Hoch

Hi Mark, I've been reading your blog for some time, and fondly remember your CBG work.
This is my first post to your site but I couldn't hide my giddyness due to the silver-age lazurus pit rebirth of my childhood.
I may start reading new ''comics'' again.
Thank You

Mark EngblomM

Wow....you go all the way back to my CBG cartoons, huh? Glad to hear from you, Al! Welcome to Comic Coverage!

John Nowak

I've got to admit that I'm torn as well. I never had anything against Bucky or Barry, but I really dislike character resurrections.

I love a good "Don't bother looking for a body -- there's no way he could possibly have survived that," or "Here are some stories that took place before he died." Flat out resurrections, though...


Is Iron Man really a fascist? I know he came off that way in Civil War, because Millar couldn't figure out how to carry out his (actually very interesting) idea, but if you read Fraction's Invicible IM or the Knaufs over on IM: DIrector of Shield, Tony is still pretty much Tony-- the brilliant OCD (Bob Layton's excellent description of him) guy who struggles to find compromises and do the right thing in the face of government and corporate pressures (those are pretty good espionage/adventure titles, too). That's the IM I grew up with from Michelinie and Layton's first run onward. When others right him in other books, yeah, he comes off badly, but that's because the predelictions of a lot of comics writers mean they struggle to cope with a character whose complexities and contradictions are sometimes hard to capture, thus creating the easy out of a one-note characterization (God bless him, I love me some Bendis, but his Avengers writing always leaves something wanting).

And while the ONE MORE DAY story line was dum-dum, Spidey reads better now than it has in 20 years, so it's hard for me to complain (except to say that they need to stop the whole revolving writer-artist thing and just put Dan Slott and Marcos Martin on permanently.

Flash? Is he still publishing? (Just kidding, Mark! (:).

Mark Engblom

"When others write him in other books, yeah, he comes off badly, but that's because the predelictions of a lot of comics writers mean they struggle to cope with a character whose complexities and contradictions are sometimes hard to capture, thus creating the easy out of a one-note characterization..."

I get the feeling some behind-the-scenes maneuvering took place regarding Tony Stark and his role in the Marvel U. For a time, it looked as if Tony was heading for "Hal Jordan-Paralax" territory by becoming another hero-turned-villain...but cooler heads seem to have prevailed as Tony is nowhere near the morally compromised, mustache-twirling figure he was throughout Civil War.

It doesn't take a genius to figure out the Iron-Man movie probably had more to do with the softening of Tony's "Eeeeevil Fascist" portrayal than anything, which gives me yet another reason to cheer the film. The echo-chamber of the comics scene can get pros and fans alike to talk outselves into some pretty wrongheaded stuff, and sometimes it takes the clarion wake-up call of an outside event like the Iron-Man movie to get us thinking clearly about this stuff again. Almost a "what were we thinking?" moment of clarity, it seems.

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