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March 9, 2014

Character Spotlight: Wally West Pt 3

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Written by: Dr. Bustos
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Welcome back to this, the third and final spotlight on Wally West! [Part 2 can be found here.] The third Flash gets a three-parter; we’ll pretend I planned it that way. So it’s a race to the finish for the tale of Wally West! When we last left off, Wally and the rest of the speedsters of the DC universe had to deal with the villain Savitar and learned more about the Speed Force. Wally was mastering this Speed Force and gaining new powers and insights into old ones. Having taken Savitar directly into the Speed Force, Wally then tried his best to make the leap home.

While Wally did eventually make his way home, it was not without mishaps. He’d end up going into the 30th century and meeting his cousins, Barry and Iris’s kids Dawn and Don Allen; then he’d end up in the 27th century and meet speedster robots called Speed Metal; and eventually return to a villain-induced ice age in the present day. Wally would save the day and be reunited with Linda and his friends.

Wally West Flash207The Speed Force is a weird thing. Wally would learn that when horribly injured with broken legs as two main factors, he was able to summon the Speed Force to make a golden costume of energy to allow him to run again until his speed healing could get him back to full health. Also, Wally’s healing isn’t like Wolverine’s in that it places things back automatically in the correct place; he can heal fast in the wrong way, and require breaking the bone again to heal correctly, like normal people sometimes have to. He just heals at a much faster rate so he does need to be wary of major injuries lest they heal poorly.

Wally_West_029After many adventures and dangers, Wally and Linda would get married. This didn’t stop their strange life, as they were both high profile people, Linda as a television reporter and Wally as The Flash. There were times that the two sometimes wished they weren’t so well known, but still loved each other and their life together. That is, until Hunter Zolomon, a criminal profiler and friend to Wally, was transformed by the old Cosmic Treadmill that Wally and Barry used to use so that he could walk again. It worked, and also gave him strange time powers that somewhat mimicked the speed of the Flash, but were really a change in how time works. Now calling himself Zoom and looking like Professor Zoom, Zoloman decided that Flash needed tragedy to become a real hero. Linda had just announced being pregnant with twins, and Zoom used his powers to cause a sonic boom to induce a miscarriage.

Wally West 245px-FlashZoomDistraught over his friend becoming a monstrous villain, his wife suffering such a trauma, and the loss of their future children, Wally made a deal with the Spectre to erase the world’s knowledge that Wally West is the Flash. This is short lived as Barry arrives to explain to Wally how important Wally has become to the legacy of the Flash, and that all is not lost when it comes to saving his unborn children. Able to travel through time to save Linda, Wally is able to freeze Zoom in time while keeping Linda unhurt and thus never miscarrying.

Wally_West_0119The twins are born, Iris and Jai, with Wally deciding to retire with Linda and the kids. The family and West headed to an alien planet that loved all The Flashes they had ever met. At three months the kids rapidly aged, but thanks to the alien technology of the planet they were on, the twins were stabilized at around 8 years old with some speed-based powers, but not the full display of powers. Wally was still scared for his children’s aging, and wanted them to live life to their fullest as heroes, so they returned back to Earth. Eventually Wally would learn how to cure his kids of their speed related aging and normalize their metabolisms.

Wally_West_0092While Wally had been retired, Bart Allen (Impulse) had taken over as The Flash for a brief period, but was sadly killed by The Rogues. Upon his return, Wally took over as the Flash again, with Barry soon returning as well. Even better, Wally would learn that Bart was also to return; you can’t keep a good Flash down it seems. Or any speedster, as Savitar returned and all hell broke loose as Barry was forced to kill Savitar, causing painful feedback in all those tied to the Speed Force. An entity called the Black Flash, the Speed Force’s Death figure, appeared and seemed crazed. Barry sacrificed himself again, but Wally, knowing how to navigate the Speed Force, followed him to try and set things right and save his fellow speedsters who were lost in the Speed Force.

Wally West and company NewSuitsRacing through the Speed Force, Wally was able to rescue Barry and Max Mercury, and learned that the original Professor Zoom was responsible for the Speed Force feedback issues and the resurrections of the speedsters. Wally was able to return to Earth, and united the speedsters (including his daughter who now had full powers, which she gained by saving her brother’s life by severing his connection to the Speed Force) to fight Zoom, before Barry and Zoom ended the fight with Barry coming out on top. Not before the battle could be won, though, did Zoom tell Wally that he’d seen a future where Jai would destroy Wally. During the attack of the Black Lantern Corps, it was Wally and the other speedsters who alerted every superhero on Earth of the danger that was spreading quickly.

Wally West New 52Since the events of Flashpoint and the New 52, we have not had Wally West appear in any stories. He is going to return in April, though. So who knows what he’ll be like. He is looking a little blue, though. I hope you enjoyed reading up on Wally West and all his many adventures. I only touched on a handful of them here, otherwise I’d probably have another part or two to write about the guy, but at that point, just go check out some of his comics.

Recommended Reading

The Flash, Vol. 1 #110
The Flash by Mark Waid
The Flash by Geoff Johns

Dr. Alexander Bustos

drbustos@comicattack.net

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