We’ve been on a roll lately with these background checks on our favorite heroes and villains in anticipation for the upcoming show, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. So, we figured that it’s time to give a background check on the heroes that started it all, beginning with, of course, our favorite Scarlet Speedster, Barry Allen. Or, as we like to call him, The Flash!
It all started back in 1940 with the first appearance of the Flash in Flash Comics #1. Our very first Flash was none other than Jay Garrick.
Name not ringing any bells? Well, remember that helmet that mysteriously flew out of the wormhole that the Reverse Flash helped create in the season finale of The Flash? Yeah, that was Garrick’s helmet.
Jay Garrick, in 1983, was a college student who accidentally inhaled a good amount of heavy water vapors after taking a smoke break in the laboratory where he would conduct his research. Due to the chemical imbalance, he discovered that he could run at unimaginable speed and had super fast reflexes. He donned the traditional red and had a lightning bolt embedded on the shirt. He also wore that helmet as a homage to the Greek deity Hermes. Garrick wore this suit and fought crime for years as the very first Flash and would conceal his identity by vibrating his body while in public so that no photographer could take a picture of his face.
Next is our favorite Flash, Barry Allen!
Now, in the comics, it’s a little different than how we’ve seen Barry become the Flash in the TV show.
Allen was an assistant scientist in the Criminal & Forensic Science Division of the Central City Police Department who had a terrible reputation for being slow, frequently late and had little common sense. This frustrated his fiancee, Iris West, numerous times. And he obtained his powers when, one night, while he was preparing to leave his lab, a lightning bolt came out of nowhere and struck his chemicals on a table, causing an explosion that hit Barry. Because of this mysterious bolt, Barry discovered that he could run at extremely fast speeds and had unbelievably quick reflexes. It was then that Allen had decided to become a superhero and fight crime just like his childhood idol, Jay Garrick. So, Barry sports a set of red tights with a lightning bolt as his symbol and names himself the Flash, the protector of Central City.
Finally, we’ll talk about the third Flash, Wally West.
West? Hold the phone, that’s Iris’s last name. Okay, let us explain.
Wallace Rudolph “Wally” West is the nephew of Iris West and of Barry Allen by marriage. And when West was a 10-year-old, he was visiting his uncle, Barry’s, laboratory and, sure enough, history repeated itself. The freak accident happened once again and covered West in the same electrically charged chemicals that gave his uncle the powers of superspeed. West would later learn to control his abilities and don a copy of his uncle Barry’s suit and named himself as the Kid Flash. It was only after a few years down the road after Barry Allen had been killed that Wally had earned the name of the Flash and took up his uncle’s mantle as the Fastest Man Alive.
The mantle of the Flash has been taken up by many more than just Jay Garrick, Barry Allen and Wally West. But they all derived from the same ideal of using their superspeed to fight the bad guys and give their hometowns the justice they deserve.
When it all comes down to it, it’s all about helping others, right? Just very quickly. Get it?
Get ready, speedsters!
The Flash returns for a brand new and exciting season this October and in DC’s Legends of Tomorrow in 2016 on SFL-TV, the CW!