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The Flash (Bartholomew Henry "Barry" Allen) is a fictional character, a superhero in the DC Comics universe. He is the second character known as the Flash. The character first appeared in Showcase #4 (Oct. 1956), created by writers Robert Kanigher and John Broome and penciler Carmine Infantino. His name is a portmaneau of those of talk show hosts Barry Gray and Steve Allen. His death in 1985 removed the character from the regular DC lineup for 23 years. His return to regular comics occurred in 2008 within the pages of Grant Morrison's Final Crisis limited series.

Fictional character biography

Allen is a police scientist (his job title was changed to a forensic scientist in The Flash: Iron Heights one-shot) with a reputation for being very slow, deliberate, and frequently late, which frustrates his fiancee, Iris West. One night, as he is preparing to leave work, a lightning bolt shatters a case full of chemicals and spills them all over Allen. As a result, Allen finds that he can run extremely fast and has matching reflexes. He dons a set of red tights sporting a lightning bolt, dubs himself the Flash (after his childhood comic book hero, Jay Garrick), and becomes Central City's resident costumed crimefighter. Central City University professor Ira West (Iris' adoptive father) designed Allen's costume (reminiscent of the original Fawcett Captain Marvel) and the ring which stores it while Allen is in his civilian identity. The ring can eject the compressed clothing when Allen needs it and suck it back in with the aid of a special gas that shrinks the suit. In addition, Allen invented the cosmic treadmill, a device that allowed for precise time-travel and was used in many stories. Allen was so well liked that nearly all speedsters that come after him are constantly compared to him. Batman once said "Barry is the kind of man that I would've hoped to become if my parents hadn't been murdered" .

Justice League

As presented in Justice League of America #9, when the Earth is infiltrated by alien warriors sent to conquer the planet, some of the world's greatest heroes join forces—Allen is one of them. While the superheroes individually defeat most of the invaders, they fall prey to a single alien and only by working together are they able to defeat the warrior. Afterwards the heroes decide to found the Justice League of America.

During the years, he is depicted as feeling attracted to Black Canary and Zatanna, but he never pursues a relationship because he feels his real love is Iris West. Allen also becomes good friends with Green Lantern , which would later be the subject of the limited series Flash and Green Lantern: The Brave and the Bold.

In Flash # 123 – "Flash of Two Worlds," – Allen is transported to Earth-Two where he meets Jay Garrick, the original Flash in DC Continuity; it is revealed that Jay Garrick's adventures were captured in comic book form on Earth-One. This storyline initiated DC's multiverse and was continued in issues of Flash and in team-ups between the Justice League of America of Earth-One and the Justice Society of America of Earth-Two. In the classic story from Flash # 179 – "The Flash - Fact or Fiction?" – Allen is thrown into the universe eventually called Earth Prime, a representation of "our" universe, where he seeks the aid of the Flash comic book's editor Julius Schwartz to build a cosmic treadmill so that he can return home.


In time, he married his girlfriend Iris, who learned of his double identity because Allen talked in his sleep. She kept his secret, and eventually, he revealed his identity to her of his own free will. Iris was eventually revealed to have been sent as a child from the 30th century and adopted.

In the 1980s, Flash's life begins to collapse. Iris is murdered by Professor Zoom (a supervillain from the 25th century who had long loved her and been jealous of Allen), and when Allen prepares to marry another woman, Zoom tries the same trick again. Allen stops him, killing Zoom in the process by breaking his neck. Unfortunately, due to Barry being unable to make an appearance at his own wedding, his fiancée eventually descends into madness.

Placed on trial for murder in connection with Zoom's death, Allen is found guilty by the jury. When he is told by a juror, who is being possessed by a mind from the future, that Reverse Flash (who Allen knows to be dead) brainwashed the jury into this verdict, Flash flees his trial. The Flash is then attacked by Reverse Flash, and realizes that the answers to this mystery, and restoring his good name, lie in the future, so the juror uses a time device to send them forward. They discover that Abra Kadabra, was disguising as Reverse Flash to ruin the Flash's good name. Defeating Kadabra, he retreats to the future to be reunited with Iris, having learned that Iris's spirit was in fact drawn to the 30th century, and given a new body (and was in fact the mind inhabiting the juror). The final issue of The Flash ends with Flash and Iris kissing passionately, and the caption "And they lived happily ever after... for a while". There are a few references in the final issue (Flash #350) to the upcoming events, and Flash's impending death.

Crisis on Infinite Earths

Following the trial, Allen retires and joins Iris in the 30th century. However, after only a few weeks of happiness, the Crisis on Infinite Earths intervenes, and Allen is captured by the Anti-Monitor and brought to 1985; according to the Anti-Monitor, the Flash was the only being capable of travelling to other universes at will, so the Anti-Monitor couldn't allow him to stay free. Allen escapes and foils the Anti-Monitor's plan to destroy the Earth, but dies in the process. It has been said that Allen travels back through time and becomes the very same lightning bolt that gives him his powers, but later it is also strongly implied that the soul of Barry resides in the Speed Force, the mystical source and Valhalla open to all dead speedsters, and from which the living ones draw their amazing powers. After Allen's death, Wally West, his nephew and sidekick (known as Kid Flash), takes up the mantle of the Flash.

After death

Marv Wolfman, scribe for the Crisis on Infinite Earths, has repeatedly stated (first hinted at in his introduction to the original Crisis collected edition hardcover), then fully explained on his website [100146]) that he left a loophole in the script wherein the Barry Allen Flash could be re-introduced, without a retcon, into DC Universe continuity. This loophole would allow a writer to pull Barry out of his desperate run to annihilate the anti-matter cannon. However, Barry would know he must someday finish his death run, and would become more determined to use his speed to help others.

It should also be noted that the way Barry Allen seemed to have "died" in Crisis on Infinite Earths, was that he ran so fast that he was able to stop the Anti-Monitor’s anti-matter cannon from firing by catching the tachyon beam at the heart of the weapon. After this act, according to Secret Origins Annual #2 (1988), Barry Allen turns into a lightning bolt, goes back in time, becoming the lightning bolt that hit his lab, splashing his past-self with chemicals and transforming him into the Flash. [100147]

In Deadman: Dead Again, Barry is one of the heroes whose spirit Deadman helps to enter Heaven, and the Green Arrow storyline "Quiver" depicts Barry Allen in Heaven. His spirit, however, seems to still be alive within the speed force, along with Max Mercury and other speedsters.


Iris is pregnant when Allen dies, and she has two children, the Tornado Twins, who later meet the Legion of Super-Heroes. Each of her children themselves have children. One, Jenni Ognats, grows up to become the Legionnaire XS, while the other, Bart Allen, is born with a rapid-aging illness, and is sent back to the 20th century where he is cured by Wally West. He remains there as the superhero Impulse, later becoming the second Kid Flash as a member of the Teen Titans. One year after the events of Infinite Crisis, Bart becomes the fourth Flash until he is abruptly killed by Inertia and the Rogues in The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #13. Wally then retook the identity of The Flash. Bart is resurrected as Kid Flash in Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds.

Post-Crisis appearances

Due to his time-travel abilities, even death failed to stop Barry from aiding his friends and family.

Barry first reappears during the Chain Lightning arc, where Flashes from different eras join together to defeat Cobalt Blue. Previously, a man that was thought to be Barry Allen, was revealed to be a past version of Professor Zoom, the Reverse Flash, who had been driven mad on a visit to the past and believed himself to be Barry Allen. Cobalt Blue is Barry Allen's twin brother, who had been given to another couple at birth due to a mistake at the hospital. The resulting battle takes place shortly before Barry Allen is kidnapped during the Crisis on Infinite Earths. Barry is nearly killed in this battle, almost rewriting the outcome of the Crisis.

When Wally West, wracked by grief for the loss of his unborn twins at the hands of Zoom, regrets the public knowledge of his identity, Barry comes from somewhere in time, counseling him, and talking the Spectre into granting his wish. He then disappears, telling his nephew that he will come to his aid three times, the three most difficult days of his life. In fact, when Zoom enlists the aid of Professor Zoom to make Wally relive the loss of his beloved twins, Barry is already there, trying to stop his own Reverse Flash. For the second time, he helps Wally to undo the damage dealt by Zoom, also allowing Wally to save his twins, and then he returns to his proper timeline. Barry has come back for a "second" time, to help Wally with the Final Crisis of Mankind.

Infinite Crisis

In the fourth issue of Infinite Crisis, Barry Allen comes out from the Speed Force, along with Johnny Quick and Max Mercury, to help his grandson Bart to deal with Superboy-Prime, taking the villainous teen with him in the Speed Force. Bart Allen appears wearing Barry Allen's costume in Tokyo near the end of Infinite Crisis #5 to tell the heroes that Superboy-Prime has escaped the Speed Force. Bart again reappears in Infinite Crisis #7 in Barry Allen's costume to combat Superboy-Prime once more.

In Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #6 (2006) (with a portion taking place shortly before Infinite Crisis #5) is told how Barry spent four years in an alternate Keystone City along with Max Mercury, Johnny Quick and an alternate Jay Garrick, until he met Bart and Wally West, joining him after the battle against Superboy-Prime. After Superboy escapes, Barry suggests that someone has to absorb the whole Speed Force and cross the dimensional bridge back to Post-Crisis Earth. As Bart volunteers, Barry gives him his suit as a last gift, to keep the Force contained, and stays behind. Wally West didn't go because of his wife and kids. Bart says he knows Barry would go if he could, but why Barry Allen could not make the journey himself is not stated.


Twenty-three years after his death in Crisis on Infinite Earths, Barry Allen's essence made a return to the present DC Universe proper in DC Universe #0, preceding his full time return in the pages of writer Grant Morrison's Final Crisis.

DC Universe #0 features an unnamed narrator who initially associates himself with "everything". As the story progresses, he begins to recall his past and association with Justice League members, particularly Hal Jordan and Superman. The lettering in which he speaks to the reader is yellow on backgrounds that are initially black. As the story moves forward, the background slowly begins turning red. In the final pages, the narration boxes feature a yellow lightning bolt. On the final page, the moon appears in front of a red sky, as a yellow lightning bolt strikes diagonally in front of it creating the logo of the Flash. The title of the story is revealed to be "Let There Be Lightning."

A New York Daily News story released on the same day proclaimed that Barry Allen has returned to life, with issue co-writer Geoff Johns stating, "When the greatest evil comes back to the DC Universe, the greatest hero needed to return.".

Final Crisis

He makes his corporeal return in Final Crisis #2. On the 2nd to last page, Jay Garrick and Wally West feel vibrations to which Jay remarks, "Wally, don't you recognize those vibrations? It can't be... Not after all these years... Not after all this time." On the final page, Barry Allen is seen in hot pursuit of the bullet which kills Orion, outrunning the Black Racer and yelling out to Jay and Wally to "Run!"

During Final Crisis #3, Jay Garrick speaks to Barry's wife, Iris, and tells her that her husband is truly alive. Meanwhile, Wally and Barry run a few weeks into the future. When they come to rest, Wally asks Barry if it is really him. Lamenting on Orion's death, which he was unable to stop, Barry wonders why he is now alive after being dead for so long. It is then that Barry and Wally are confronted by Wonder Woman, Batwoman, Catwoman and Giganta, who have all been transformed into the new Female Furies following the release of the Anti-Life Equation.

Despite the fact that this new version of the Female Furies is equipped with the ability to track down speedsters, perceived by Libra and Darkseid as the only obstacle left between them and world domination, Barry's expertise allows him to overcome their foes and run through the ruined Earth.

Barry stops to see his wife Iris and save her from the slavery of the Anti-Life Equation. Seeing his wife again for the first time in years, Barry is overcome with emotion and gives his brainwashed wife a deep kiss. While kissing her, the Speed Force sparkles out of his body, enveloping Iris and freeing her from the Equation. The Allens and Wally West are left to fend in a conquered world. In the seventh and final issue of Final Crisis, Barry and Wally lead the Black Racer to Darkseid, dealing the cosmic tyrant a blow that, coupled with Batman shooting him in the shoulder with the god-bullet, would facilitate his ultimate defeat.

The Flash: Rebirth

In 2009, writer Geoff Johns and artist Ethan Van Sciver created The Flash: Rebirth, a 6-issue mini-series bringing Barry Allen back to a leading role in the DC Universe as the Flash. When asked what Flashes would appear in the series, Johns and Van Sciver said, "All of them." The series begins with the cities of Central and Keystone celebrating the return of, "Central City's Flash." Avoiding the parades, parties, and other celebrations of his return, Barry instead deeply contemplates why he is alive again. A visit to the Flash Museum and from his friend Hal Jordan is not enough to put his mind at ease as he runs off as the Flash. "I can't be late," he says. When asked by Hal late for what, Flash simply replies, "For whatever the rest of the world needs me for."

It is then revealed that Flash's mother was murdered when he was a child, and his father was arrested for the crime. (This is pointedly contrary to the original, pre-Crisis Barry Allen stories, in which both his parents appear alive.) Flash describes this as, "the only one open case I left behind." Before he can contemplate this any further, the speedster villain Savitar escapes the Speed Force through Flash and he gives chase. When Flash manages to put his hand on Savitar's shoulder, the villain screams in agony and crumbles into dust, not before telling Flash, "...You were the beginning, Allen...and you're the end." At that moment, Wally West, West's children Iris and Jai, Liberty Belle, Jay Garrick, and Kid Flash all experience painful convulsions and are engulfed in lightning. Shocked at what happened to Savitar, Flash asks himself, "What the hell did I just do?"

Barry's conflict with the speed cult culminates with the death of their new leader who was attempting to avenge Savitar's death. It causes pain once again to all the speedsters, though Wally West manages to catch a glimpse of Allen directly afterwards, and sees him as the new Black Flash. When he realizes that his presence could damage or kill other innocents, Barry flees back into the Speed Force, where he encounters old friends Johnny Quick and Max Mercury. Max attempts to tell Allen that his becoming the Black Flash is not his fault, and when Max and Barry are pulled into another pocket of the Speed Force, the real culprit reveals himself: Professor Zoom.

The story is ongoing.

Blackest Night

Allen appears alongside Hal Jordan in the Free Comic Book Day issue Blackest Night #0 that acts as a prologue to the July company crossover.

At the grave of Bruce Wayne in Gotham City, Hal Jordan and Barry Allen reflect on Batman's death and how the hero community is avoiding linking Wayne and Batman.

This reflection turns to the pair looking at their own deaths, comparing the sadness that Barry's death engendered in others while Hal's death produced anger. Hal sums it up by telling Barry, "I died a sinner. You died a saint." The conversation moves on to the world becoming "more dangerous" after Barry's death and observing that the deaths of Arthur Curry and Martian Manhunter cost the Justice League its "heart and soul". As they leave the cemetery, Barry expresses hope that their dead comrades will be returned to them. He specifically cites Batman noting, "If there's an escape, you can bet Batman's already planning it."

Barry will also appear alongside Hal in the July issues of Green Lantern tying into the event. Recently, in a fight with Black Lantern J'onn J'onzz, he found a mysterious black residue at Bruce Wayne's grave-a black form coagulating much like blood that started corrupting him by partly decaying his skin and muscle during the fight against his former friend, who is intent on killing both Hal and Barry, seeing how they both died, and in the eyes of the Black Lanterns, must return to that state to keep the universe in balance. After fighting off the undead Martian and the subsequent Black Lanterns with Hal and the arriving Atom, Mera, Firestorm, and two of the Indigo Tribe members, Barry, along with Wally and Bart, races across the globe to warn every superhero community across the planet. He eventually stopped at Coast City, where he witnesses the arrival of the Black Lanterns' demonic lord, Nekron, and his disciples Scar and Black Hand. The Justice League, the Titans, Wally, and Bart arrive to aid Barry to take a stand against Nekron. However, Nekron reveals however that all the resurrected heroes are tied to him, because he allowed them to rise again. And as such they belong to him. Nekron then used a series of black rings to turn Superman, Green Arrow, Bart and several other resurrected heroes into Black Lanterns. Barry himself soon finds himself being targeted by a black ring and is force to flee or risk joining the others as Black Lanterns.

Allen will star in a tie-in limited series in December 2009, Blackest Night: Flash, written by Geoff Johns and penciled by Scott Kolins.

Powers and abilities

Barry Allen is capable of running faster than the speed of light and, at times during the Silver Age of comics, described as faster than the speed of thought (which is actually much slower than the speed of light, approximately 110 meters/second in human beings ). In Flash #150, "straining every muscle," he ran at ten times the speed of light. However, when he pushed himself further (during the Crisis on Infinite Earths) he appeared to waste away as he was converted into pure energy, traveled back in time, and was revealed in Secret Origins Annual #2 to be the very bolt of lightning that gave him his powers. This was later retconned in The Flash: Rebirth #1, where Barry stated that he "ran into the Speed Force," and that, "When [he] stopped the Anti-Monitor, when [he] ran into the 'Speed Force' and joined it, it was like shedding [his] identity."

Barry Allen possesses abilities that Jay Garrick has not always been able to duplicate, most notably the ability to "vibrate" in such a way as to pass through solid matter. Allen has regularly engaged in time travel using the Cosmic Treadmill device (he no longer needs this to conduct this feat), and is able to "vibrate" between dimensions. Barry is unique among Flashes and most characters in the DC Universe in that he has complete control over every molecule in his body. In Grant Morrison's Final Crisis, using the Speed Force, Allen was able to undo the effects of the Anti-Life Equation upon an individual: an ability he used on his wife Iris to free her from the bondage of Darkseid's mind control. He has recently been revealed to not only be connected to the Speed Force, but is the very source of it, generating it with every step he takes. As such, he presumably has some if not all of the Speed Force-related abilities other speedsters have demonstrated (such as lending and stealing speed), though he has yet to demonstrate such abilities. This alone is enough to make him one of the most powerful beings on Earth, and perhaps in existence. He is also immune to telepathic attacks and control, as he can shift his thoughts at a speed faster than normal thought. He used this tactic against Black Lantern Martian Manhunter in Blackest Night.

Rogues gallery

The Flash has acquired a colorful rogues gallery of villains. Their number includes (but is not limited to) several who formed a loose association and refer to themselves as the Rogues, disdaining the use of the term "super-villain" or "super-criminal". These criminals typically have unusually modest goals for their power level (robbery or other petty crimes), and each have adopted a specific theme in his or her equipment and methods.

Trade paperback and hardcover collection

Collected editions that reprint issues of The Flash (vol. 1) and other comics featuring Barry Allen. The Archives are hardcover, all the others are softcover trade paperbacks:
Title Original Material collected
The Flash Archives Vol. 1 HC (ISBN 1563891395) Showcase #4, 8, 13-14

The Flash (vol. 2) #104-108
The Flash Archives Vol. 2 HC (ISBN 1563896060) The Flash (vol. 2) #109-116
The Flash Archives Vol. 3 HC (ISBN 1563897997) The Flash (vol. 2) #117-124
The Flash Archives Vol. 4 HC (ISBN 1401207715) The Flash (vol. 2) #125-132
Showcase Presents: The Flash Vol. 1

TPB (ISBN 1401213278)
Flash Comics #104

Showcase #4, #8, #13, #14

The Flash (vol. 1) #105-119
The Greatest Flash Stories Ever Told

HC (1990) (ISBN 0930289811)

and TPB (1991) (ISBN 0930289846)
Flash Comics #1, 66, 86

Comic Cavalcade #24

Showcase #4

The Flash (vol. 1) #107, 113, 119, 124, 125, 137, 143, 148, 179

Five-Star Super-Hero Spectacular

The Flash (vol. 2) #2
The Flash: The Greatest Stories Ever Told

TPB (2007) (ISBN 1401213723)
Flash Comics #86, 104

The Flash (vol. 1) #123, 155, 165, 179

The Flash (vol. 2) #91

DC Special Series #11

Other versions

  • Barry Allen is a supporting character in Frank Miller's Batman: The Dark Knight Strikes Again. He's been kept by Lex Luthor as a power source for most of the East Coast, constantly running on a treadmill to provide cheap electrical power or Iris will be executed. After being rescued, Barry wears a black version of his original Flash costume which Batman's young assistants deemed as "old" — "Kids, these days, can't tell the difference between just plain old and classic", he mutters. He then aids Batman and other heroes in restoring order, though they clash when Barry wants to save people in danger while Batman is prepared to let them die for the sake of his long-term strategy.

  • Barry Allen also stars in JLA: Age of Wonder as a scientist working with Superman and a consortium of early twentieth-century scientists such as Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla. The uniform incorporates the Silver Age look with the Mercury-style helmet worn by Jay Garrick.

  • Other Elseworld appearances include: League of Justice, a Lord of the Rings-type story, where the character is re-cast as "Phaeton," who wears a mystical brooch resembling Flash's lightning-bolt chest emblem, and has bathed in dragon's blood in order to protect himself from speed friction; and Batman: Holy Terror, where he is one of a number of metahumans imprisoned by a theocratic state, and is killed when his captor deactivates the aura that protects him from friction.

"Buried Alien"
  • A story in the Marvel comic book series Quasar has the Marvel Universe speedsters facing off in a competition set up by a being called the Runner. The contest is a race from the Earth to the Moon. During the race, a surge of energy hits the track, leaving a being with blonde hair and dressed in the remains of a red outfit with yellow boots. This being has no memory, but an enormous desire to run. He goes on to win the race, passing Marvel speedsters such as Quicksilver and Speed Demon in the process. When asked what his name is, the man replies, "I don't know... Buried Alien, or something like that." When asked how it felt to be the fastest man alive, he replied, "It feels... right!" The racer goes on to take the name Fast-Forward, disappearing into the universe in an attempt to help Makkari, who is stuck at hyper speed.

  • In the Elseworlds tale Superman & Batman: Generations, Barry's life is still the same, but heroes age in real time. This reality shows no sign of the Crisis ever happening, so an elderly Barry is seen to be alive and well in 2008.

  • The Elseworlds story Flashpoint shows an alternate reality where Barry Allen becomes the Flash in 1956, the year he first appeared in comics. He is more involved in government affairs. By 1963, he has ended the Cold War and pushed the communists out of Vietnammarker. However, his career is cut short as he takes a bullet aimed at John F. Kennedy. He is paralyzed from the neck down, but he still has the fastest mind on Earth and forms Allen Industries. By 1988, he and Vandal Savage's Immortality, Inc. have begun an exploration of Mars. In 1998, Wally West leads an expedition to Mars, during which he finds the flashpoint, an object which killed all life on Mars. Savage reveals his true colors as the one who shot Allen. Barry makes contact with Wally, who is going on a super speed rampage. Barry is cured and defeats Savage. He then enters the flashpoint, going into the Speed Force.

  • In The Flash Annual #7, an alternate universe is shown where shortly after Wally West became Kid Flash, he became a superstar celebrity. However, Barry was tragically killed while battling Captain Cold. Ten years later, Wally is now a paraplegic and Captain Cold has written a supposedly "true" story about Barry that paints him as arrogant and incompetent. Wally decides to make a movie about his mentor that portrays the genuine Barry Allen. The resulting film is a success.

  • Recently the Barry Allen of Earth-51, where secret identities are no longer needed by superheroes, is seen alive. He is subsequently killed by the Monitor of New Earth.

  • In JLA: The Nail a version of Barry Allen is a member of a Justice League where Superman didn't become a hero and join the team until much later. In lieu of Superboy's adventures with the Legion of Super-Heroes, the Flash visited the 30th Century instead. Barry Allen of The Nail is almost identical to the pre-Crisis Earth-1 version.

Other media


  • Barry Allen never officially appears in the DCAU series of animated projects by Bruce Timm and Paul Dini. However, a police detective in the Justice League episode "The Brave and the Bold" has a passing resemblance to Barry Allen, acting as the "good cop" during the Flash's interrogation . In the Justice League Unlimited episode "Flash and Substance," the Wally West Flash mentions his uncle "flying in" to attend the dedication of a Flash Museum, an apparent reference to Barry . There's also another character on the same episode, who is Wally's teacher at the forensic lab, that bears strange resemblance to Barry. All though the series Flash is Wally West in name and likeness, he has many of Barry Allen's story elements, such as his origin, job, city, foes, and status as being the first scarlet speedster and co-founding the Justice League. In the episode "The Brave and the Bold part 1" when The Flash goes into a comatose state he has some strange dreams, one where he has gained so much weight that he is too fat to run, a homage to the silver age issue of The Flash #115, he also has a giant head in one part of the dream, a nod to another silver age comic, The Flash #177.

  • He made a cameo appearance in The Joining, Part Two, the Season 4 finale of The Batman. He also appeared in the Season 5 episode "A Mirror Darkly", portrayed by voice actor Charlie Schlatter, who reprised his role as the Flash from Superman: The Animated Series. Producer Alan Burnett said that while Flash had no distinct identity in the episodes, he considered this particular Flash to be Barry Allen.


  • Barry Allen was the Flash in the 1990s Flash live-action TV series, although this character incorporated elements of Wally's social life, as well as previously non-existent characters such as a brother and nephew. He was played by John Wesley Shipp. CBS originally wanted to cast Jack Coleman, who declined the role to pursue a career in Broadway. Incidentally, Coleman went on to play a different hero, Noah Bennet on NBC's Heroes.

  • In season 4, episode 5 of Smallville, entitled "Run", featured speedster Bart Allen (Impulse). He is portrayed as a self-centered teenager who uses his powers for personal gain, (including the Flash logo on his rucksack) although by the end of the episode, he was showing signs of changing his ways. Bart also carries around identification of Jay Garrick, Barry Allen, and Wally West, three Flashes in the main DC Universe. In season 6, episode 11 ("Justice") he is working with Green Arrow, Cyborg and Aquaman to bring down Lex Luthor's plans of experimenting on "meteor freaks". He is also in the season 8 finalle of the show entitled "Doomsday".


  • Ballad of Barry Allen - A song by the band Jim's Big Ego on their album, "They're Everywhere". The song portrays Barry as a tragic character, whose perception of the world is so accelerated that all of reality appears to proceed at a snail's pace, causing him to gradually slip into depression. The band's frontman, Jim Infantino, is the nephew of Flash co-creator Carmine Infantino, who provided the cover art for the same album.


Video games

  • Barry Allen is the Flash in the crossover video game Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. He appears in a variant of his current costume. Although the character model contains green eyes, normally a sign of Wally West, as well as the duel lightning bolt belt (instead of Allen's single bolt belt), which is associated with West's, the game's "Bios" section confirms that it is indeed Allen.

Mentions and references in media

  • In the 2008 pilot episode of The Middleman, Wendy Watson (Natalie Morales) mentions The Flash as one of her favorite comics. When the Middleman, her soon-to-be boss asks, "Barry Allen or Wally West?". Wendy simply replies, "Do you want me to leave?" Left unanswered is which of the two she does prefer.

  • In the movie Catch Me If You Can, Frank Abagnale, Jr. (Leonardo DiCaprio) uses the name Barry Allen from The Flash comic book as one of his aliases in the film. The fact that he uses the name of a comic book character leads Carl Hanratty (Tom Hanks) to believe that Abagnale is much younger than he had previously thought. He also had some Flash comic books in his room when his father woke him up to get the suit.

Notes and references

  2. The Flash (vol. 1) #267 (November 1978)
  3. NY Daily News - Entertainment/Arts 2008-04-30
  4. Final Crisis #2 (June 2008)
  5. Final Crisis #3 (July 2008)
  6. Final Crisis #4 (August 2008)
  7. Final Crisis #7 (January 2009)
  8. The Flash: Rebirth #1 (April 2009)
  9. The Flash: Rebirth #2 (May 2009)
  10. The Flash: Rebirth #3 June 2009)
  11. Blackest Night #0 (June 2009)
  12. Blackest Night #1 (July 2009)
  13. Green Lantern (vol. 4) #44 (July 2009)
  14. Blackest Bight #2-3
  15. Blackest Night #5 (January 2010)
  16. Blackest Night: Flash confirmation at
  17. Mark Waid speaks on Barry Allen's powers in Super Heroes United!: The Complete Justice League History on the Justice League: The New Frontier DVD
  18. The Trophy Room - Season One
  19. Toon Zone - Your Source for Toon News!
  22. Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe Flash Biographical Information

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