Flash III

Created by John Broome & Carmine Infantino

NAME + ALIASES:
Wallace West

KNOWN RELATIVES:
Linda Park West (wife), (mother), (father, deceased), Iris West Allen (aunt), Bart Allen (Impulse, cousin), Jenni Ognats (XS, cousin), Eric Russell (grandfather), Fran Russell (grandmother)

GROUP AFFILIATIONS:
Teen Titans, Justice League International, Justice League of America

FIRST APPEARANCE:
As Kid Flash: Flash v.1 #110. As Flash: Crisis on Infinite Earths #12

+ History

Wally West was the nephew of Iris West, the woman who married Barry Allen, the second Flash. Wally's first exposure to the world of super-heroics came when he was elected president of the local Flash Fan Club in his hometown of Blue Valley. Little did Wally know at the time that he would soon be adventuring right alongside the Scarlet Speedster. After Iris arranged for Wally to meet his idol, the exact same accident that granted Barry Alien his powers befell Wally, endowing him with similar abilities. Soon the Flash took on Wally as a sidekick, and nicknamed him Kid Flash. (Flash v.1 #110) Throughout his career, Kid Flash adventured solo, alongside Barry, and with the Teen Titans, a group composed of his fellow Justice League sidekicks. (Teen Titans #53)

Because he received his powers before he reached puberty, however, Wally's metabolism was greatly strained every time he hit his accelerated speeds. Eventually, this condition became so pronounced that the use of super-speed became painful, and Wally was forced to retire. (New Teen Titans v.1 #39) During the Crisis, however, Wally came out of retirement to help oppose the Anti-Monitor. In the course of this adventure, Wally's metabolism was altered, reducing the effectiveness of his powers, but eliminating their painful side effects. The Crisis also ultimately proved to be Barry Allen's last battle, prompting Wally to adopt his mentor's identity as a display of respect. (Crisis #12)

After weathering the Crisis, Wally dropped his former affiliation with the Titans to start a new life. He was rich for a while after winning the state lottery, (Flash v.2 #1) but soon lost all of his money to mismanagement, (#15) leaving him destitute. Wally was then recruited into Justice League International to serve in Justice League Europe. (Justice League America #24) Since that time, Wally has been one of the longest serving members of the League in its newer incarnations. He helped found three Leagues (and three groups of Titans)! First with the JLE, then when this branch folded during Zero Hour, he transferred to Wonder Woman's new JLA. (J.L.A. #0)

As his experience grew, Wally became the supreme speedster. He eventually discovered that all speedsters draw their powers from the "Speed Force." This knowledge enabled him to "borrow" and "lend" speed to others. Though he was relatively young in age, the members of JLA highly respected Wally for his many years' experience. He joined them for the third time to help form the newest JLA. (JLA Secret Files #1)

When Wally west disappeared into the timestream, the mysterious Walter West (Flash IV) appeared and began filling. (Flash #152) Though he resembled an older Wally West, he explained to Superman and Troia that he was actually from another timeline. These two heroes vouched for his membership in the JLA and Titans as Wally's temporary replacement. (JLA #33)

He met reporter Linda Park. After dating for several years the two married and were expecting their first child. Unfortunately, Wally inherited Barry's large gaggle of "Rogues," who plague him continuously. His unborn child died when the deranged villain called Zoom attacked. Linda blamed Wally for the tragedy and left him. Afterwards, Wally was visited by his old friend Hal Jordan, who not bore the awesome power of the Spectre. The Spectre granted Wally's wish: he wished that his identity was no longer public. What Wally didn't bank on, however, was forgetting himself that he was the Flash.

He took a job as a police mechanic and gradually relearned his powers. But the erasure of Wally's identity left ripple effects among those who knew him best. Soon the JLA came calling, wondering why they could no longer recall any facts about the original Flash, one of their best friends. Wally discoverd that the Spectre's magic could be undone by simply re-revealing his identity to a person, and this he did to most of his colleagues in the super-hero community.

Recently, Wally decided to split his JLA duties between the core team and the new black-ops "Elite" team, led by Vera Black. (JLA #100) Though that branch has been officially disbanded, it remains to be seen whether Wally answer a future call to action from Vera.

Recently, the super-hero community was rocked by the murder of their friend, Sue Dibny, wife of the Elongated Man. This prompted Green Arrow to give Wally a letter written long ago by Barry. In it, Wally discovered that Barry had been a party to tampering with the minds of super-villains. In particular, he and Zatanna had rearranged the psyche of the Top. The Top knew the Flash's secret identity and had threatened the lives of his loved ones. Barry had recently lost his wife and saw no other way to stop this threat. He carried his remorse in this letter to Wally, who resolved to set things right. He called upon Zatanna to undo her magic, and the Top predictably reverted to his evil ways (but was soon killed by Captain Cold).

In the past, many of Barry's Rogues had reformed, which left the question: had all their minds been tampered with? A war broke out between the Rogues, the "good" side being led by the original Trickster, who now worked for the FBI.

Wally now also serves as a mentor to the new Kid Flash, who is Barry's grandson, Bart Allen.

Notes

In the DC/Marvel Amalgam universe cross-over (1996), Blaze Allen was called Speed Demon. Wally West was known as Kid Demon, sidekick of Speed Demon. Pietro Allen was called Mercury.

+ Powers

Wally taps into an other-dimensional source of energy called the Speed Force. This gives him the ability to move faster than light itself. He can also "lend" speed to (or "steal" speed from) others, especially other speedsters. Flash can also vibrate so fast as to allow him to move through solid matter. His speed is so intense that he can also defy gravity by running on water, or vertically.

The Speed Force creates an aura that protects the Flash and any passengers from the ravages of friction. Because the flow of time is different him, he is able to anticipate and react to events in what, to others, seems precognitive. Even the Flash's mind works at superspeed. He can process data and tasks with astonishing speed.

With the assistance of technology (like the Time Treadmill), his speed can be used to move in the timestream as well.

Appearances + References

» FEATURED APPEARANCES:

 

Too numerous to list  

» SERIES:

 Flash Comics/The Flash v.1, 350 issues (1940-49, 1959-85)

 The Flash v.2, current (1987-)

 Flash and Green Lantern: The Brave and the Bold, 6-issue limited series (1999-2000)

... and others too numerous to list.