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The Nightwing and Flash Friendship Has Always Existed. Just Trust Us.

This is "Gonna Change My Way of Thinking," a feature spotlighting notable examples of retcons that don't fit into the framework of Abandoned an' Forsaked, which is specifically about stories that outright "overturn" older stories. There are many examples of "retroactive continuity" that do not actively abandon the works of the past. Some of them are minor, some of them are major, all of them are interesting enough to me that I figure that they are worth writing about.

My pal Bill Walko suggested this one.

Okay, the relationship between Dick Grayson and Wally West goes all the way back to Brave and the Bold #54, when Bob Haney and Bruno Premiani had three teen heroes team-up together...

Gotta love that unimpeachable logic there on the "jive" clue.

The issue was a hit, so six issues later, Haney brought in a fourth teen hero, Wonder Girl (who wasn't technically a teen hero so much as the teenage version of Wonder Woman, but Haney didn't really care about that either way, so he just added her as she was) and they got a new name - the Teen Titans...

This second try-out was a hit, as well, and soon the Teen Titans got their own series...

While the stories in those old Teen Titans books were a blast, as Haney and artist Nick Cardy came together to do some amazing comic book work, one of the areas where there wasn't quite as much in the way of development was the relationships between all of the teammates. Some of them, especially teammates flirting with Wonder Girl, had a little bit of a personality, but in general, Haney played by the old rules of superhero teams, which is that any real personality work would occur in the regular books of those characters (plus, of course, it is hard to do much character work when Wonder Girl didn't even have a real name at the time).

However, when the Teen Titans reformed in the 1980s by Marv Wolfman and George Perez, Wally West went along for the ride...

But pretty much right away, Wolfman and Perez's take on Wally was that he didn't quite fit in with the rest of the team. New Teen Titans #20 famously has Wally write to his parents about the Titans and see how he talks about Robin. It sure doesn't sound like they're super close, right?

Right before the famous storyline, "The Judas Contract," Wally West leaves the team and see how it is not like there was a whole lot of super close goodbyes here...

Even later in the issue, where Wally and Dick say private goodbyes, they are certainly friendly with each other, but it's also certainly nothing all that special...

Wally was in character limbo for a time before he was pulled from limbo to take over as the Flash from Barry Allen after Crisis on Infinite Earths. Wally even then rejoined the Teen Titans, but specifically at a point when Dick was away from the team...

Wally then joined the Justice League and the two heroes really did not have much overlap over the next few years. Then, all of a sudden, things changed...

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