DC Comics (October, 1994)
WRITER: Mark Waid
PENCILER: Mike Wieringo
INKER: Jose Marzan, Jr
COLORIST: Gina Going
ASSOCIATE EDITOR: Ruben Diaz
EDITOR: Brian Augustyn
The last time we saw Wally he was dead. Well, we thought so, but in fact he’s bouncing through the timestream, noticing Max Mercury was watching him during a recent case, seeing his own origin, and then returning to normal time outside his childhood home during a family reunion. Wally had strict parents who wanted to keep him planted in what they thought was the real world, but a stranger convinced him to not give up on his dreams. That stranger turned out to be…his future adult self. Giving the speech he’s heard in his head a million times, Wally uses his speed to return to modern day.
What they got right: Why did he get dragged through time and why was Max watching him? This sets up the next storyline, possibly interesting new readers to Wally West, if not the Flash overall. That makes it a good starting point. He also notes that strict parents aside Wally didn’t have a bad childhood and as he notes lacks the angst that was befalling too many superheroes in the 90s. It’s good to see that, since this wasn’t quite “everybody must be Batman” times.
What they got wrong: Wally’s future self is what inspired him on the path that would turn him into the Flash? How did that happen? What was the original trigger? There’s a potential time paradox here that so many time travel stories ignore.
Recommendation: A decent introduction to Wally West at this time and sets up the next event as well as mysteries, possibly, about his powers, maybe even the speed force. Worth picking up for the complete series or curiosity.