COMIC LEGEND: Marv Wolfman had a plan to keep the Flash alive after Crisis on Infinite Earths.
A few weeks ago, I did a Comic Book Legends Revealed about why the Flash was chosen to be killed off during Crisis on Infinite Earths. Commenter Fraser recalled a story about Marv Wolfman having an idea for a new Flash other than Wally West to be introduced after Crisis. That's true, and I discussed that in an ooooooooold Comic Book Legends Revealed. However, while I was reading that old Comic Book Legend, I discovered that I had just made a quick reference to Marv Wolfman's famed "escape route" for Barry Allen after Crisis and I realized that I had somehow just never featured that as its own legend, which is a silly idea by me, as it is a really cool story!
Crisis on Infinite Earths #8 features Barry Allen's heroic sacrifice...
Those snippets where Barry sees the Joker, Kid Flash and Batman are from different points in the series, demonstrating that Barry was traveling through time.
This, then, was Marv Wolfman's awesome "escape clause" for keeping Barry alive (in a way) after Crisis.
The idea was that since leading up to his death Barry was traveling erratically through time, Barry would pop up in the present day from the time traveling journey that led up to his death. Barry would then live in the present knowing that at any moment, he will be picked up and sent to the NEXT stop in his travels, which will ultimately lead to his death.
Wolfman felt that this would be a major shakeup, and would add a great sense of drama to the series. The new status quo would be that (as Wolfman so eloquently put it) "from now on the fastest man alive would literally be running for his life."
Marvel did a variation on that when they seemingly returned Captain Marvel via time travel (but after he had already been exposed to the radiation that would ultimately kill him) during Civil War (he turned out to be a Skrull, though):
Obviously, DC passed on both that idea and the idea of the new Flash, so Wally West got the job for the next twenty-plus years instead!
Thanks to Marv Wolfman for the information and thanks to Fraser for compelling me to realize that I had never used this one before for some reason!
Okay, that's it for this week!
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