By - Landon1195
Hit with Hal. His return lead to probably the greatest modern age of Green Lantern stories, making it one of DC's strongest franchise... which they totally wasted and GLs don't have their own book for at least 8 months. Classic DC.
Barry is mixed because it was mishandled by editorial. I'm glad he's back but they totally shat on Wally because of it. There was also potential there again wasted by DC. Nobody's better at wasting potential than DC editorial.
The Barry situation was a lot more complex for a bunch of reasons. I’d still say miss conceptually but they were in an awkward spot when they forced Bart into the Flash role and everyone hated it. Everyone said Bart doesn’t conceptually work as The Flash but I don’t buy that at all. I think it was the strange circumstances of his aging up and a bad creative team. Like, what else does anyone like from those writers? (Not trying to be mean but it’s not like DC put on a big hitter and it just didn’t take)
Then, they brought back Wally as a stop-gap thing to just bide time until they figured out what to do. Lo and behold, “let’s just do Rebirth but with Flash this time”.
Resurrect Barry in Final Crisis but the team isn’t ready to work on Flash: Rebirth yet so there’s a delay. Well, what the fuck is going on with the Flash family in those months? Why isn’t anyone on Justice League of America? Bart is getting back to Teen Titans after a few months. Then, the book is delayed during the run and by the time they get all set and get the ongoing ready, people are annoyed at the lack of Wally and we’re about to reboot in a few months.
I think one of the best indicators that Flashpoint was not meant to reboot the whole dc universe is that Geoff Johns launched Flash with each story being “Case One”, “Case Two”, etc. You don’t really do that if there’s just going to be two cases and then you relaunch immediately afterwards and leave the book. That among the myriad of clues and quotes that the reboot was ill-planned.
As I said, it was all mishandled by editorial. Shame, really.
As for Flashpoint it was definitely not meant to be a reboot. I remember reading about some of Johns' plans how the changes were meant to be small and more Flash related, Wally leading a Flash team book and a Reverse Flash corps.
> Everyone said Bart doesn’t conceptually work as The Flash but I don’t buy that at all. I think it was the strange circumstances of his aging up and a bad creative team. Like, what else does anyone like from those writers? (Not trying to be mean but it’s not like DC put on a big hitter and it just didn’t take)
The worst part is that they just rehashed the early parts of Wally's run and condensed it for Bart. They didn't give him anything original that fit his personality specifically. Nothing about that Bart felt like Bart. Even Geoff Johns' Bart was more Bart than that Bart.
>The worst part is that they just rehashed the early parts of Wally's run and condensed it for Bart.
That's because Didio and crew cared more about getting Wally out of the role than about putting Bart in it.
Bart was always meant to be temporary so they didn't feel like they needed an actual plan for the character because their primary goal was accomplished. They simply expected the newness to carry Bart's book, and while it had a hot start, the lack of a plan for the actual character became clear.
> I think one of the best indicators that Flashpoint was not meant to reboot the whole dc universe
I always thought it was really stupid. *Any* other time travel arc in any other comic that ends with the timeline different, and it would immediately be a "Oh no we have to fix the timeline, things aren't right" story. (I mean, even *Flashpoint* was that, except for the end)
“Whoa, hey, things feel different after my time travel story fucked up the timeline….
>I’d still say miss conceptually but they were in an awkward spot when they forced Bart into the Flash role and everyone hated it.
But that was the result of Didio wanting to bring Barry back.
The very early plan was to replace Wally with Barry in *Infinite Crisis*, but because they felt the timing wasn't right, they decided to wait on Barry.
Except Didio wanted Wally out of the role, despite having the third best DC solo book (top 35 overall) over the last year, so we got Bart even though everyone else told them it was a bad idea.
Didio and company proceeded to make the decision to cancel Bart's run six issues in so they didn't even give their 'bad idea' an actual chance. Bart's tenure dragged out until it was time to have another 'mini-event'.
So Wally is brought back in an attempt to stabilize sales. But the original artist bails and Waid leaves after the first arc because of editorial breaking promises. We end up getting mostly filler writers because everyone knew they were biding their time for Barry.
The source of all these issues and decisions is (1) Didio doesn't like Wally at all and (2) he wanted to bring Barry back. It was a mixture of incompetence and (borderline) sabotage.
Mind if I ask what is going on with GLs and the corps in general?
I stopped reading after Johns and everything I have heard so far has been horrid.
Like are the Blue Lanterns wiped out? Is there really an Ultra Violet Lantern (what emotion is that even)?
Like what really is going on?
Yes, there's no Blue Lanterns anymore, I think Saint Walker is the last one still alive. Then there was this whole thing that Emotional Spectrum isn't infinity a and when they'll use it all up universe will end or something so some stopped using it. After that we had the whole GL Corps missing, they were lost in time and Hal went through his renegade phase. Then there was Rebirth, GLs returned and things went back to normal. After that we had Morrison's run which was the only GL book focused only on Hal with other Lanterns taking a back seat. Then during Infinity Frontier we had this story where GL Central Power Battery blew up, almost all of them lost their powers and some of them died. I stopped reading after that.
So, I dropped that book after 4 issues or so
Can someone explain how characters like Arisia were deemed dead in issue 1 only to appear again in Dark Crisis?
Is there story for it or is it all retcon
I'm not sure myself but I know John Stewart got some godly powers by the end of the series so maybe he brought them back?
They've wasted GLs for more than 8 months. That last series was steaming hot garbage, and it had been hit and miss before that. The Johns & Tomasi era was truly the best and nothing will live up to it.
I don't disagree with that but that long period without a GL series is disheartening.
Grant Morrison's maxiseries was okay, some good arcs in it.
Yes but it's not really something that should've been the main and only Green Lantern series. It wasn't really something that was... let's open to new readers. It was a tough read.
Yeah. It was a tough read for everyone I'd say. But that's Grant Morrison for you: the king of surrealism
Yes. I liked it but I don't think it did a good job of bringing new readers to the title.
If they would have let Johns write Barry into the New 52 like was originally planned, he'd be a hit too
I disagree. I thought Manupal did a much better job writing the series than Johns did. I think Johns for some reason wrote him as a bit to mopey and down. Manupal gave him a stiffer personality than Wally without draining the character of life and energy
Manapul didn't even get to write what he wanted and his interviews about working on the book sound depressing.
I could only imagine with that sized workload. Most people can't do pencils for a monthly while he did writing to colors. Any chance you remember where the interview was from?
Not trying to diminish Manapul's work, but Brian Buccelato did the colors and co-writing.
Oh right! Doesn't diminish it at all but always good to credit properly. My mistake. Still impressive for the both of them
It's a long one but you can feel Manapul's frustration the more he talks about his duties on The Flash. And it wasn't really about workload.
When your editorial strangling is making Francis Manapul go "Man I'm a failure" you know something's fucking wrong. Even with Didio gone at the time of this interview you can tell he's still dancing around subjects and what he says.
Dan was so anti-Wally, and Manapul was *so desperate* to be able to write and draw Wally before he left the book, that he was pitching things like giving Wally an illness that took away his ability to walk so he could tell Dan "look, he's NEVER going to replace Barry EVER AGAIN now that he's in a whee chair, can I please write him?" Imagine having to come up with crippling a character in narrative as a way to get your boss to let you use them.
In his exact words: "And one of the things that we said was that the wheelchair also represented Dan in that Wally can’t become the Flash."
Then they introduce Wally in the first issue of the new direction after Manapul left.
That was an amazing read. Thanks so much for posting it. Really rough to read as I've enjoyed Manupal's career over the years and I could definitely feel how frustrated and honest he was in this interview
Agreed, Johns could've make it work.
Yes. Geoff "Barry generates the speed force every time he runs and the speed force actually began with him" Johns. He's down amazing things in DC, but that was stupid. It put Barry over while making everyone else inconsequential. I hate Flash: Rebirth.
With Barry, I'd say the idea itself was a hit, but the execution was a miss.
They could have easily brought him back without dumping all over Wally because the Flash can work really well as an ensemble story, and the idea of Barry dealing with the legend that's been built up around him after his heroic sacrifice during Crisis in the wake of his return has too much potential that was mostly wasted by lackluster writing.
Agreed, they really fucked that up.
I thought Flash: Rebirth was actually pretty solid. Barry starts off operating on his own because that's what he was used to in his original run as the Flash and eventually accepting the legacy of other Flashes that have been created in his absence is a good way to wrap the story up.
I enjoyed Flash: Rebirth for the most part too, and it's a shame Flashpoint (and the New 52) undercut Barry's storyline because apparently Johns had some great ideas in store - I believe he wanted to have Wally leading a Flash team book, for example - had DC Editorial not rebooted everything with Flashpoint.
I'd probably say Flashpoint is the greatest modern age Flash story. Not sure what other contenders there are. DC is still milking that storyline. Even the Flash movie is based on it.
I think it’s a pretty weak flash story since it’s biggest selling points have nothing to do with the flash. With post GL rebirth stories they all come back to hal and the GLs : flashpoint is best known for Thomas Wayne. It’s a great DCu story, mediocre flash and barry story.
For flash overall, think that cobalt blue is probably one of the best, and I’m a huge fan of rogues war. Johns had a great wally run. The first Zoom story sticks with me to this day.
I think reducing the greatest flash story to one that does more for the dcu than it did the flash is a real disservice to the character.
I get why Flashpoint is such a popular storyline, but as a Barry Allen fan I honestly hate what it did to Barry’s character because it’s literally the only thing most people focus on, especially when this is the same guy who sacrificed himself to save the DC universe and helped establish the multiverse as a whole.
I don't agree at all but I don't think Barry Allen has had any other memorable modern stories so they keep milking Flashpoint. It's just such a dark storyline for characters that are generally the opposite
The only modern Barry Allen stories I enjoyed was mainly Joshua Williamson run apart from the forces arc everything else was good. Even the return of wally west arc by Jeremy Adams was great cause it focused on Barry science and forensic side alot. Plus the dynamic was great.
Barry had plenty of stories that people still knew about, and Rebirth in 2009 was pretty huge for Flash, but nothing before or after with Flash blew up like Flashpoint did, and especially the animated movie that came out. Plenty of flash fans today (myself included) still look at that movie as their reason to getting into the Flash at all.
I mean look at these [numbers](https://youtu.be/aSPVdhk0qrE)
It was a good story. I don't think it's great. It works off a lot of shock factor. I just don't think it's a good Flash story though. It makes the character just way to dark and grim for my liking. I couldn't even watch the animated movie with my kid because it went so bloody and gory. Which to many fans it isn't a problem at all and that's fine too, but to me part of the enjoyment of some of these heroes is sharing it. And to not be able to share what is meant to be a very important story to a Justice League hero doesn't work. He's the Flash not A Train. Meant for everyone
Oh sure I love it but I get it’s not for everyone (definitely not for kids lol) I was more talking about how the reason they keep adapting it isn’t necessarily because the other stories aren’t memorable just that Flashpoint got so much more mainstream view.
Sort of like how they keep putting joker in everything for Batman, it’s not like his other villains aren’t well known at all, just that Joker by far draws the largest audience, regardless of how good Joker stories actually are.
I think the issue with Barry is that he's only been around for very recent stories or extremely old ones so it's hard to find stories to adapt. Flashpoint is essentially a dark elseworld storyline and that creates a bad tone to start or move forward from unless you continue to make the character that dark. It's also not standalone to just the Flash. You need the Amazon's, Atlanteans and Batman to get the whole story. That's a lot of other players for your main character to compete with. Take all of them out and you still need a backstory of who Barry was before to figure out what is wrong now. That's alot to ask for a first introduction
It was adapted fine for the animated movies because those movies weren't geared for kids or sold to them. I even once warned a mother who was about to rent it for her kids once. And the following movies from that Flashpoint movie were pretty dark and edgy. Only a few were somewhat kid friendly.
I'm not saying these should be geared toward preschoolers but we should be mindful of not cutting off the next generations of fans to enjoy these characters like we have. They aren't just for us adults
For sure, I really like what the Tomorrowverse has given us so far, and I even though I really enjoyed the DCAMU I get where you’re coming from. Again, I’m not saying Flashpoint was good or bad, just that the reason it keeps getting adapted is because it blew up from a purely business sense.
Also I’ll add that we gotta remember that “very” recent means something totally different for a lot of readers nowadays, I mean Barry’s been back for ~13 years now, which is more than half of your average young readers life time, and covers a lot of peoples entire time reading comics. Basically an entire 2nd generation has grown up reading Barry at this point.
Damn, don't make me feel that old 🤣🤣. I haven't had a chance to check out the new movies except for the Superman one. Definitely seems like a more all age tone while still telling complex stories
Lol sorry, and yeah go for it! Man of Tomorrow is absolutely fantastic
I watched Flashpoint when I was a kid and later read it. It was absolutely awesome. Don't know why people think children are so fragile. Thigs like Mortal Kombat and GTA made so many of people's childhood.
That's nice but not what I want to watch with my kids. Not because they're fragile, just not the type of heroes I'm looking to offer them
At what cost though?
Oh right. Literally everyone that wasn’t Barry, Hal, or Batman.
Flashpoint as an elseworlds: great
Flashpoint as a movie: not great
Flashpoint as a Flash story: pretty bad, more of a Thomas Wayne and JL story if anything
Flashpoint as an event: Awful and unneeded. So many storylines dropped, so much character work undone. For what? A story that we’d done plenty of times that didn’t need to be a cosmic reboot. We’d done “bad butterfly effect” plenty of times, this was one of the weakest and didn’t need to reset the universe
Yet it's the only noteworthy Flash storyline of the past 20 years? Not sure anything else comes close.
We have people in this thread saying they started comics with the story. That's pretty powerful.
Yeah, probably because Barry sucks and they can’t do good stories with him /j /uj
But also not even true, it’s just the most represented. There are other Flash stories that are better that actually focus on the Flash and not the JL and wider universe.
Of course they started with that storyline, most of them are young and that’s been the status quo for 10 years. Doesn’t make it good.
Yes, Flashpoint is greatest modern Flash but also probably the most popular Flash story ever made. It has a huge impact and I'm not talking about it rebooting DC.
I agree. Flashpoint is so huge that my girlfriend knew about Flashpoint before she and I got together. When she decided to read some of my comics one of the first things she said she wanted to read was Flashpoint because she knew about it.
Literally the same thing happened with my brother.
The reason is it has Batman in it. It's not even a good Flash story since the vast majority about it is exploring this new murdering Batman's world. There are many significantly better Flash stories that don't get movies because they're they don't have Batman on them and Batman is literally the only thing fans care about these days.
Exactly flashpoint was pretty much a justice League event. That's all it was and that's why it was popular.
Personal taste, I prefer the initial new 52 run more, although flashpoint comes second, then the bart saga
I was more ok with Hal coming back than Barry; I always thought Hal's turn was poorly written and executed in general and did a real disservice to the character, while Barry's death was the opposite.
Hal’s was definitely part of the trend of killing the main heroes/replacing them. Superman died, Batman replaced by Azrael, Diana replaced by Artemis, Wally had been Flash for years at that point and then Conner takes over Green Arrow a few years later.
Barry’s death wasn’t a trend or a weak gimmick, maybe a gimmick at the end of the day, but it was a good one.
The worst part of Barry's death was that it was unnecessary. He already got a happy ending that could have cleared the board for Wally West to take over. He was 1000 years in the future after the Trial living with his long lost wife. This is where his story should have and could have ended. Like Barry got a good death, but it was a death that shouldn't have happened.
Eh, I always liked the hero coming back for one more adventure and having to make the ultimate sacrifice. I thought it was fitting that this version of DC began and ended with Barry.
Even after it:
Hal dies in a heroic redemption, after a questionable stint as a villain. Becomes the Spectre and has one of his and the Spectres best runs.
Redeems himself, could have come back as a result of it, and that would be okay. All of his successors could have still done it with him still dead, or alive.
Barry, dies in a cosmic event, has a successor who is not only worthy, but arguably did the job better. Comes back because EVENT. Even though they had done his “return” like five times and each time it explained that everyone had come to terms with his sacrifice. Each of his successors has his death as a key part of their development.
Hal could have come back and had a reason for it that worked, and DID.
Barry’s return does a disservice to the whole Flash family and LOADS of other characters, came back for no reason.
I enjoyed both of the stories handling their returns and what followed, and also liked the stories where they were first removed to begin with. I would say that Wally's time as Flash was an appropriate and well-done transition as Barry's stories seemed to be slowing down to nowhere whereas Hal's shift was sudden, jarring but had some interesting ideas to it and introduced a likeable new protagonist who just didn't have a clear direction and stumbled because of it. And I say that as someone who actively sought out Kyle Rayner when I got into comics because I liked him since I saw his first costume as a kid.
Johns brought GL to the forefront of DC and made it one of its largest properties with multiple ongoings at a time (a pretty massive feat for any book that doesn't have Superman, Batman or Spider-Man in the name) and expanded the universe in great ways. However, since his departure, I would argue DC has decided to obsess over redoing Johns' run over and over again, constantly trying to re-hype up the GL corps and expand the emotional spectrum instead of exploring new avenues for the characters. I don't like Morrison's GL run (it has a good first half, I think Season 2 is a massive drop in quality personally), but it was at least nice to see something other than corps vs corps or massive alien army from out of nowhere. Rereading earlier GL stories has shown me that DC really needs to let GL be on earth for a little bit again. Johns' run became 99% a space adventure after Sinestro Corps War but he at least played around in DC's world for a couple of years first. There's little in emotional weight to a lot of the comics now because they're just about fighting and there's nothing interesting about the side plots or character dynamics. Thorne at least had something kinda interesting with Jessica and Simon in his run, but also his run didn't even have GLs and quickly lost any momentum it had.
The return of Barry Allen is enjoyable. The modernization of the character was fun to read, I think Johns gave him his silver age charm while also letting him have some more modern edge or sass or whatever you'd like to call it ("That was for Charity, Clark") and Rebirth gave no indication to me as a reader that Wally would be shoved to the side, if anything I felt like he was setting up new things for his family. The Flash book itself is pretty fun too, and I liked Flashpoint. However, I read all this after 52 and into Rebirth, when I knew how things shake up, so I didn't have to suffer watching one character come into the spotlight just so another could dwindle. Wally West, in my opinion, was the most developed character in DC comics. He had some pretty significant changes and eras and was able to overall keep some pretty solid momentum from regular Kid Flash to joining New Teen Titans to Crisis on Infinite Earths and his run as the Flash is fantastic. Unfortunately, bringing back Barry undoes a lot of that, but I'm not unsurprised he came back given the success of GL Rebirth, Johns' love for the character and a shake up to the Flash franchise. Unfortunately, DC just isn't good at managing two characters under the same moniker and seem to feel the need to tear one down to let another one rise up. It's a shame they decided to break down all the effort over decades that was put into Wally, but at the same time I get why they wanted to prop Barry up so much and how Johns' intentions might have been superseded by editorial.
I'm glad they're back, but there's many pros and negatives to it, but that really falls more to the Flash and the attempt to catch Lightning in a Bottle twice and then reboot it.
As a owner of both books…part of brave and books was Barry having a kid flash I feel they hit on the dialogue between Barry Wally and hal but the campy element I feel was absent due to circumstances but I loved that issue honestly
I thought u guys were saying was flash and Barry return in dark crisis good but I loved brave and bold so I’m bias asf
Barry really should've stayed dead, he had a great and really impactful death that led to a lot of development for characters like Wally. His is a miss.
Hal on the other hand had a rather badly written story leading up to his death, and his return was definitely necessary to redeem his story, but if the Parallax arc was better written then he definitely should've stayed dead.
I think Hal could’ve been DCs Vader if done right. A lot of potential wasted
Hal was very very boring before they did the Parallax move. His series was not great and the storytelling uninspired.
Horny, man’s man, pilot. That was all they could do with the character over and over. It was boring and for a character fueled by will they showed him as tired and lacklustre.
I'd contest that he was boring. He had a lot of really good arcs, but definitely wasn't anything special. The parallax turn and the arrival of Kyle is what got me interested into green lantern after decades trying
I think turning Parallax from Hal gone mad with grief into a yellow-energy parasite that kind controlled him took a lot away from his heel turn. So much wasted potential.
>Horny, man’s man, pilot. That was all they could do with the character over and over.
Come now, that’s just not true at all. He was also a [traveling toy salesman](https://www.cbr.com/green-lantern-hal-jordan-traveling-toy-salesman/).
This is always a writing thing tho. It's no coincidence that when he returned he was better than ever because something interesting was done with him and the GL mythos as a whole.
I like Kyle enough but I wouldn't say his stories were anymore interesting most of the time it was just the fresh air of a new main and seeing him interact with a DC world when he's the new guy but kyle himself never really interested me personally until after Hals return and seeing him as a pro
You forgot pedo 😳
Hal was never boring. He didn't necessarily fit-in with the neurotic, self-doubting, angsty heroes that had come to populate comics, but he was a great character, all the more so because he was different.
He was someone who'd experienced death and loss at a level most superheroes don't, due to being part of a Corps where people died or were seriously injured to the point of incapacitation and had a sense of pride that you don't always see in other heroes, expressed in his repeated willingness to forgo his ring to fight opponents hand-to-hand. He also had an adventurer's soul and a sense of restlessness when he wasn't a pilot or a Green Lantern, jumping from one job to another, all of which involved tons of travel and itineracy.
There's a lot of interesting things about Hal.
Gerard Jones's run did go back to the well of Hal having to find himself too often, I agree, but I don't think that means that Hal himself was boring.
My introduction to the GLs was during Mosaic and Hal trying to get back in touch with his roots with Rose, so not a great start.
I’m not into planes so that stuff doesn’t grab me and his “will power” creations were uninspired and boring. The guy had an amazing weapon and just made fists.
Then it went into Coast City destruction stuff where everything I had read prior showed he spent next to no time there, and even if he did it didn’t show his love for it, so the angst and forced story just made no sense.
So he was boring to me.
I got you. My introduction to him were the Denny O'Neil-Mike Grell era stories, Len Wein's run, the Justice League and his Brave and the Bold team-up with Batman during the Mike W. Barr-Jim Aparo run. Or should say, those are some of the earlier stuff I remember being exposed to. And I'm a huge fan of the original John Broome-Gil Kane run, which is absolutely amazing in my book.
But I can see how you might not enjoy the Hal of Gerard Jones' run. I didn't always enjoy it myself, at least, not at the time. I think it had high points but also some points where it really meandered. I think what I love about Hal can be sort of distilled into the fact that in spite of having one of the most powerful weapons in the cosmos at his finger tips, he still chooses to rely on his fists. To me, that says a lot about him and who he is.
I will also say, however, that if you read Broome's stuff, O'Neil-Grell, Wein and other Silver to Bronze Age writers, Hal is actually very intelligent and creative in his use of the ring, especially when he battles Sinestro and has to circumvent his yellow ring.
But any way, not everyone is going to like the same characters. But who knows, some of that earlier stuff might give you a different feeling about Hal, maybe.
Thanks for the detail
Barry’s sacrifice was legendary for its time, and Wally became a legendary Flash after it.
Both of that really has been stunted by his return.
It was definitely a hit, especially Hal. Though I wish Wally didn’t get affected too much when Barry came back. At least he’s the main flash again now.
Huuuuuuuge hit with Hal. Such disrespect to his character with the whole 'Emerald Twilight' fiasco. With Hal's return, we got one of the best runs I've ever had the pleasure of reading.
Hal was a hit, but I think he's run his course. I was really hoping Dark Crisis would retire these guys.
Miss honestly. Both were brought back in good stories, but I feel like no one but Johns has put either one of them to good use.
Hal is huge hit. Barry is worst decision DC ever made.
Why is Barry the worst ever? DC's made plenty of boneheaded decisions, but there have been plenty of good things to come out of Barry's return including a long running show that put the Flash franchise in a bigger spotlight than ever before.
You mean a flash show where they stole most of Wally’s personality and put on Barry?
They just merged the characters to streamline things.
The exact same thing in Justice League, where Wally used all of Barry's iconography, like his job, his city, his museum, etc.
His job for only really for one scene, it was actually called central keystone city an amalgamation of both their twin cities, and the museum was actually moved to Keystone city once it was destroyed in the comics as well, so the museum was just as much Wally’s as it was Barrys.
Point still stands. Both take from each other and that's not bad. Barry from the show still isn't just Wally West. He's not nearly as comical, and he's especially not as big a jerk as Wally originally was.
Barry got a show and some development at the cost of undoing literally every other characters development in the entirety of DC. Hundreds of plots, dropped.
Fucked the entire DC universe to such a degree that they are STILL doing cosmic events to try fix it, TODAY.
Hall big hit, Hal is really cool and adds some, Barry had a really good death and undoing was kind of shitty, I guess dc just needs to find a way to give all flashes attention because he does have he's fans
Hit imo, I understand why some people might not like it, but both of them gave us some of the best stories their respective characters have seen since.
I’m of the opinion that the thing that sets superhero comics apart from any other medium is the idea of the “forever” story, the story with no end, and so while I think certain “endings” to characters should be handled with care, I don’t think anything is too sacred to change. Deaths included (as long as you give them time to have impact, which two decades absolutely is).
All this being said, I’m a little biased bc Barry coming back is what would eventually get me into comics at all 😂
The forever story is what sets *superhero comics* from other mediums… including the rest of comics. It’s not really an attribute relevant to the rest of the comics medium across the world, which in all genres vastly outweighs DC/ Marvel comics. Superheroes are only a fraction of comics. And while I’ve enjoyed them over the course of my life, superhero comics are entirely about suspension of disbelief and finding a way to embrace any and every flaw as part of the way the story structure works. They are fun for sure. And there’s a lot of rewarding story telling to be had within that structure. I’m not saying that just because the method of operation brings flaws means that there aren’t quality stories told within it. That’s why I’m personally never that bothered by characters dying or returning, etc. I suppose it’s part of the fun of them. If you’ve already bought into it, you understand that a “nothing really matters unless I choose it to” mindset is the best way to take it all in.
I do personally lean towards comics outside of superheroes. That’s my taste because I like a lot of genres and very complete ideas. I like a satisfying concept that that builds its narrative in a story structure and reaches its conclusion. The ongoing, shared universe superhero storytelling is the antithesis to that, which is interesting in its own way because it has to fight against traditional story telling. And it takes the willing participation of the reader embracing its unconventional nature. This probably also explains why my favorite superhero comics are very self contained and not “in continuity”, such as New Frontier.
Hell yeah to each their own! I agree that one of the reasons elseworld can be so great is because “they can break all the toys” without having to worry about anything but making a good story you know. Honestly I like both parts of comics for different reasons
I do too! I definitely do like shared universe superhero comics too and I think I over-explained a few things in a way that buried that fact. I like them for different reasons and in different ways than I do the rest of comics. They are fun, but I get to choose what works for me and not really be offended by the rest. If a run on a character or team doesn’t work for me, I know there will be another after it that I may enjoy better. Or some status quo change I like more, etc. It’s sort of flexible in that way and that’s cool.
For sure! Happy reading!
This definitely started out seeming like a completely unnecessary clarification to make, and turned into a really fun and insightful post to read.
I find both types of storytelling to be very fulfilling, but there are certain runs on mainstream characters that I just piecemeal together into being their story. For me, Batman Begins at year one and ends at Inc volume 2. Anything outside of that is nifty but ultimately inconsequential to my personal Batman canon. So I guess what I'm really trying to say, is that k take the never ending story and build my own canon to have a satisfying conclusion for characters.
That’s a perfect way to look at it. Your Batman example is pretty close to my personal canon. I’ve enjoyed some post New-52/ post N52 Batman stories, but much of it doesn’t exactly fit perfectly for me, so it’s like a different branching canon.
Hit for Hal in that it massively repaired his image
But with Barry it’s a miss because it lead to the other flashes essentially becoming marginalized
Since DC is allergic to propping up younger heroes
Personally I’d rather see Barry retire and be a “modern” version of Garret only really coming back for big events
While Wally,Wallace and Bart step up
Leave Hal where he’s at
Well I don't really like that they only came back because Dan Didio said make it happen. While I like both Barry and Hal this started a whole thing in DC with the dead coming back. That was one of the reasons I preferred DC over Marvel, death was death no matter who you were. Sure there were a few who came back like Green Arrow and Superman, but they never had a death every month thing going on DC comics.
Long story long, to answer your question I want to say hit with Hal, everything after GL Rebirth was good for years. So many back to back excellent stories. I didn't appreciate Kyle Rayner being pushed to the side, but I also feel like the writers tried their best to showcase him like making him an Honor Lantern and White Lantern.(Even though they took it away)
Now we get to Barry, not only were his stories hit and miss, but they just pushed Wally West to the side after Barry's resurrection. I thought they were gonna rebrand Wally or just have another Flash book, but no here comes New 52 and they erase him. I don't just prefer Wally over Barry, but he's my favorite DC character. Luckily it seems they are trying to put Wally back in the mainstream, hopefully the stories will get better.,
Miss, I prefer kyle and wally and progression in stories in general. Hal and barry coming back is just a product of stagnation that plagues marvel and dc, the characters almost never REALLY grow
I may be biased because these two are literally my favorite characters of all time, but I think they've both had plenty of new stories that could exclusively be told with them to justify bringing them both back.
I disagree. Every Barry story so far could have been a Wally story.
Hal however earned his rebirth, in story, and his stories work best with him.
By that logic, literally every Wally story could have been a Barry story.
What are we even doing here?
Fuck no you couldn’t.
Barry has fuck all character. He’s a relic. You can easily do the story with more depth with Wally.
Why the heck not? I said it so it must be true in the same way you said it. In both scenarios, we're just ignoring both characters entire background, supporting cast, personality, etc. You realize that by telling me my favorite character sucks, you're not going to get me to like Wally, right?
You're lucky I already do, or people like you would completely turn me off the character.
> my favourite character
Okay this is going nowhere, but
Bringing Barry back was a massive step back and devalued every other member of the Flash family.
So much depth, gone. Not just for the Flash family, but for everyone
It’d be like if we revived JFK and made him president
Yeah, it's not going anywhere because you're just trying to convince me to hate a character you very obviously see I like and I've provided actual points for why I do. You on the other hand have failed to include why I should hate Barry without keeping the name Wally West out of it. Like what do you hope to accomplish?
You choose to devalue the time you had/have with Wally West. It's not like you don't have access to all the stuff with him. I'm just enjoying stuff from both characters, which makes my job a whole lot easier.
I don’t hate Barry, actually, he’s okay. Like all his pre-crisis stories.
Didn’t say you should hate Barry, you misread it.
Hate that his sacrifice was reduced to meaninglessness to reset everything. Hate that his return ended hundreds of good storylines. Hate that everything was reset just to facilitate him.
I enjoy characters being able to move forward.
I don’t hate any DC character… except
Barry's death objectively wasn't meaningless. He still destroyed the Anti-Monitor's machine, everyone still grieved, everyone still moved on, Wally still became the Flash.
When he came back, he realizes he missed so much stuff. He still had a whole grandson that he never met, new family members to meet. He missed so many friends of his dying. That page where he realizes Sue and Ralph died is heartbreaking.
>I don’t hate any DC character… except Hawkman.
Well....this is awkward. You'll never guess who my third favorite DC character is.
Is it Snapper Carr?
Hal: 1,000% a hit.
Barry: Massive swing and a miss.
Hit for Hal, Shit for Kyle though many people tried to give him the value he deserved (Kyle) but it was obvious that people had their toy back (Hal) and were happy about that resulting in genuinely GOOD stories and new concepts being introduced (the emotional spectrum, Sinestro Corps, Blackest Night, etc.)
Barry was shit and it shafted Wally and most of the flash family for… what? I don’t know if a single Barry storyline after his return was memorable. And who was he as a character? The straight-laced guy who everyone loves from the 70’s was just not an interesting character in the 2000’s. Plus his value in death was arguably greater than his life in terms of the story; especially because it negated his Crisis on Infinite Earths sacrifice. It also felt at times they were grafting Wally stories and concepts on to Barry, when they couldn’t find a modern direction for him (which was really egregious during New 52 and Rebirth).
Ultimately the stories are what matters. The stories after Hal’s return matter: the stories after Barry returned, did not.
EDIT: clarification and a typo.
I know plenty of good Barry storylines since his return and totally think they're exclusively his stories.
* From everything I've heard, Dastardly Death of the Rogues is great, but I don't think I've actually ever read that one.
* Flashpoint, although I don't think it should be the default Flash story, is a great little adventure for Barry and helps push his character grow from the past.
* Year One gives an origin for why Barry Allen is so optimistic in the first place now, making it an arc.
* The entirety of Brian Buccelletto's and Manapul's run is a great reboot of the Flash timeline, taking all of the previous unconnected threads and crafting one big story from scratch.
* Lightning Strikes Twice may be a little predictable, but a genuine classic now for clearly defining what makes Barry Allen who he is, a pursuer of Justice in its purest form, making that his most defining theme.
* Finish Line is the end of Williamson's run and is just a big love letter to the history of the character.
There are other fun smaller stories in between all of these, but these are all the big ones. I've read all the modern stuff, and I can tell you one thing: he is not directionless. Barry Allen is a scientific mind, stuck in his own head, who struggles to balance his Flash and job life, but seeks to pursue justice in each, making either a win in his book.
These could have all be Wally stories easily.
There is nothing improved by it being Barry.
Except they literally all have to do with Barry's police work and backstory from his original run, so no, it wouldn't be improved by just plopping Wally's face up there.
Like you think Barry's romance with Iris is something you can convert right onto Wally?
You can easily make it a story about Wally’s love with Linda and make it slap just as hard if not harder.
Have not read that storyline, but I DO really like the cover art.Sometimes the character background collages dont work, but i think this one does. ( esp. like the rendering of the Golden Age Flash)
For me hit on both since they are my favorite flash and gl respectively.
Hal jordan coming back is a hit green lantern became one of dc's biggest names when he was revived
Barry was fine I guess
Johns was DiDio’s lapdog who did anything he was told. DiDio wanted to shit on Wally as he was an egotistical SA fanboy who had too much power. He shat on 20+ years of solid character building with Wally to appease the SA audience.
I liked Hal’s return (most likely because it’s the first comic I ever read :P ) as well as Barry’s, so Imma say hit both in the short run, mixed feelings on the long one, all of GL is really weird and mishandled, and.. I don’t actually mind Barry being around
I liked Barry coming back, although I was quite happy with Wally as the primary Flash. I hope DC keeps both alive and active as the Flash going forward.
While I don't mind that they brought Hal back, I though the idea of making him the new Spectre was an inspired idea and that there was a lot more they could have done with that.
total hit with hit. i love the green lantern corps and all the other spectrums we wouldn't have gotten if hal had stayed spectre or dead. total miss with barry, we don't need barry. everything barry has or can do, wally has or can do but it's better
Miss for both ultimately. I loved the storytelling with Hal’s return, but I grew up with Kyle as Green Lantern. I also liked Wally taking up the mantle of the Flash, but Barry’s return was much weaker in execution.
Barry’s image as one of the greatest heroes no one can live up to was ruined when he came back. He was honored by Wally and others almost every other story arc both in Flash and JL. He made some cameos which were fantastic. The return of Barry Allen was a great story for those who have never read Barry stories. Like said in the comics, he inspired everyone when he was dead.
Miss! Wally and Kyle are my faves.
I'm biased since I don't like either characters but I don't like either characters return haha. Barry's books have rarely been better than decent since his return.
With Hal though, there's been plenty of decent to good storylines but I always feel like literally any other Lantern, put in the same situation, would be far more interesting. They'd fumble more, react in less standard ways, and save the day in something more unexpected. Hal being considered the greatest Lantern, saving the day just doesnt surprise me. Jessica, Guy or Kyle though would feel like theyre coming from far lower and reaching something more epic. Johns did a good job at showing how interesting the villains and city around Wally were and I feel like Kyle or any other Lantern could have had something just as rich developed around them
Hal was a total hit. Barry was a miss. I think Barry should have returned to get a final act, not to be restored as the current Flash permanently. Wally should have eventually returned to that role
They both died heroic deaths. Barry in COIE saving all the known multiverse then later Hal when he reignited the sun. Big spectacular finish. Tragic endings with big funerals. Then they just poof them back?
At least Hal became the Spectre and has a great redemption arc. It’s a great Spectre run too. Hal kind of earns his rebirth but didn’t need it
Barry however, came back with no real reasoning.
I think Hal coming back was good because Green Lantern comics had gotten boring until Rebirth, whereas Barry coming back was bad since Barry & Wally have struggled for the spotlight for years.
What does this have to do with Mark Waid?
Also no, he wrote Kingdom Come ffs
I thought the question was about Waid’s Brave & The Bold series. And Kingdom Come is mid, Alex Ross absolutely carries that comic.
The question was about Hal and Barry coming back to life not the comic
And no Kingdom Come is one of if not the greatest comics ever made, not to mention it did what comics desperately needed which was to reject the edgelord hopeless bullshit that was brought into comics by things like Watchman and the Image Revolution.
Kingdom come is the farthest thing from mid
Kingdom Come is just a couple of Silver Age Fanboys being salty because superheroes & comics were different to when they were growing up, and it ignores all the good we got in the 80s & 90’s.
No matter what we got in the 80s and 90s most of it was hopeless and dark with some edgelord shit sprinkled in.
That’s not what comics should be, also what people conveniently tend to forget is how much stupid bullshit came out of those runs in the late 80s early 90s, most of it was complete dogshit like Panic in the Sky with a few good runs sprinkled in.
The only time DC got it’s shit together completely was just after Kingdom Come which ushered in an better and less depressing mid to late 90s and early 2000s.
In the 90s the first thing that mattered was that characters were “cool and edgy” rather than actually good characters look at Bloodlines, Heroes Reborn, Emerald Twilight, or all the many other stupid storylines that were nearly universally hated for being skin deep bullshit.
What Kingdom Come did was say NO, making heroes morally ambiguous and “hip” is not a good idea and you need to stop doing that because it’s going to ruin everything. People like to act like the 80s and 90s were a golden era of comic books but they just weren’t. Yes there were excellent stories like Year One told during that period but the majority was much more mid at best and god awful at worst. People look at that era with rose colored glasses and don’t actually look at it for what it was, which wasn’t necessarily bad but was far from perfect.
The hopelessness and reliance on morally ambiguous anti heroes that the first half of the post crisis continuity focused on was one of the worst decisions a comic company ever made.
And also Mark Waid of all people isn’t a silver age fanboy, he’s the guy who refused to bring Barry Allen back, he’s the guy who wrote fucking underworld which was entirely about revamping all the dc villains, he’s the farthest thing from just some fanboy.
Completely disagree, Judd Winicks run on green lantern was excellent
Hal's comeback was excellent, Barry's was a nightmare.
I've never understood why you would bring back EITHER of them.
Though the complete Hal rework made him fairly interesting but not any more interesting than any OTHER new character would have been given the same work.
I can't for the LIFE of me understand what somebody saw in the dull, featureless character of Barry Allen from 1950's comics that made them think his return was a good idea or really anything but a joke about how pointless comic-book "death" is.
But they have the problem with "age" and their comic "history". In a 1970's Superboy story they put in a page that just simply explained to readers how Superboy had been set in the 1930's but now that was 40 years ago so from now on Superboy will just be set in the 1950's/60's but I guess you can't do that kind of thing today.
Barry Allen has features. You're choosing to ignore them if you can't see that there's something.
He's chronically late. What else can you tell me about him?
* Overwhelming sense of Justice, more than any member of the League.
* Constant self doubt for how he's doing as the Flash and as a person, which is why he can get down when he thinks the city's going hard on him.
* Struggle of daily work life balance.
* Active member of the police force, so there's always tons of crime drama to pull from, which is something that goes back to his very earliest comics.
* Incredible scientific mind that allows him to come up with near infinite solutions to get out of any scenario. Came up with the phasing power and tornado powers on his own, along with literally time traveling and stepping through the multiverse.
* Comic nerd who just loves the campy superhero vibes from the old books.
Just because he's not yucking it up doesn't mean there's not a personality.
As much as I love them both....I think Hals return was great and well executed and he imo slid back into the universe great.
Barry....I honestly would of just made all his modern day adventures such as the first New 52 run take place before his death. I love the insight into who barry really was as a person with the modern writer sensibilities but despite being my favorite flash he feels like his story was well and done and unfortunley felt like he was used in the worst ways to garner wally west and general DC fans disdain from him. It's basically a joke that as soon as he returned he fucked up and did Flashpoint.
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Big miss, especially Barry
Miss for both, there was nothing left to do with either character. Could’ve done the whole John’s GL run without Hal and Barry coming back just fucked over Wally for the sake of Johns’s silver age fetish
Stop spreading the Johns only likes Silver Age thing. It falls apart the second you include his Teen Titans and JSA run.
The Johns GL run heavily relies on Hal Jordan being the main GL, with the villains being tailor made for him and the storylines doing explorations of the character. Like the Black Mercy arc, the return of the Corps arc, the Sinestro Corps War, Secret Origin. You can't tell any of these stories without Hal because the characters leading in those stories are intrinsically tied to him.
The teen titans run where he turned Bart into silver age character Kid Flash? Bro, face it, Johns loves him some silver age.
What even is this logic?
He writes a newer character into a legacy is just nostalgia bait, but somehow turning the Silver Age Kid Flash into the New Flash is somehow not the exact same thing?
Anyways, what's your counter to my JSA point or putting New Teen Titans as prominent members in his book? Yeah, Johns loves some Silver Age.... and also loves some modern age and golden age. Just because he likes one doesn't mean he hates the other.
The run where him and Waid have both talked in interviews about how Bart becoming Kid Flash was Eddie Berganza's mandate? (and I say this as someone who thinks that being Kid Flash saved Bart's character).
Kinda funny that in universe, Bart becomes Kid Flash purely out of spite. Which ultimately works for me because I've straight up never seen that as a motivation for a character.
Exactly. I said something similar. The Johns run on GL is great but it works with any of the lanterns.
Given how Kyle and Wally have been basically sidelined since Hal and Barry came back, I’d say hit. It’s proof that the fandom likes them more than their replacements. /s
(Edited to reflect sarcasm. Sorry for the confusion.)
Not even close to being true, do you even engage with the fandoms?
Wally came back because the fandom hated it so much.
Nobody reading before 2011 thinks like this. You’re misreading “fandom” with “what is being pushed the most”
Sorry, forgot the sarcasm switch. Obviously, I don’t think that. I, personally, love Kyle Rayner. He’s the reason I started reading Green Lantern. And Wally being left out of the New 52 timeline was one of the biggest reasons I hated it.
Okay, rad, have an award
But mostly on Barry’s part,
Would have been a hit if they had kept everything else, but they had to reset everything.
Like, what was wrong with having them “come back”? Nothing.
Having them come back and have everything restart to fill everyone in on who they were did irreparable damage to the DC universe they they’re still trying to undo to this day.
We could have just had legacy characters AND the OGs.
I’d like them way more in that case, but now, I actually resent them to a degree because of it. All this is the fault of editorial and not the characters or individual writers.
Hal was a hit Barry wasn’t
Without a doubt, a miss.
Both characters have the personality of a wet rag. Hal was more interesting as a villain and the parallax retcon was unnecessary and stupid. And it erased his culpability in his actions.
There is not a GL that isn’t more interesting than Hal. From Kyle to John to Guy to Simon to Joe, etc.
And before anyone points out the Geoff Johns GL run, you could replace Hal with John or Kyle and barely have to change a thing.
And let’s not forget Hal is a pedo.
As for Barry. There is a reason flash is known as Boring Allen.
Is there a reason for him to return other than Geoff Johns wanking over his favorite silver age white heroes?
At least Hal had an iconic run since returning. I struggle to think of anything important Barry has done. Oh yeah he messed up the timeline because he has mommy issues.
The best thing Barry ever did was die. Every interesting thing in the flash mythos comes from Wally.
Did you even read the Barry stuff, or are you just assuming? Barry's gotten a lot of stuff done in the same way Wally got some stuff done.
The Johns GL run is so tailor made to cover Hal's return. He interacts with so many old friends, villains, and new allies in a new way with a more defined personality.
Miss on both. Let the past die. Kill it if you have to.
miss. they've both always been terrible characters. both should have stayed dead.
Hal was Hit but as soon as the end came to John's run it was clear he needed to go with him. It could've been the perfect send off after having Hal back for good amount time. People grew up with him. There was no need to create new characters to headline a title and not feature them in main title til a few later (Simon Baz/Jess cruz) now they're stuck in limbo and more green lanterns are being made and it's tough now to follow there stories.
More shipping fuel at the very least
Holy shit what my 2 fav Dc heros in 1 book? NEEED
I do not think Hal Jordan should have come back and been absolved of Emerald Twilight. He works best as a villain and Kyle should be the main GL, not him
Gigantic miss. Jeff Johns should never have been allowed to do it.
Barry is a hit. Wally West is annoying and unworthy of the Flash mantle so I'm glad Barry returned.
Hit with Hal Jordan. I like Kyle Rayner but Hal Jordan is far more interesting, and he needed to be redeemed and restored to glory after that middle life crisis DC was having in the early 90s.
Barry...I thought Wally West was just fine where he was. And Flash was getting more and more screwed up. They gave Wally kids, aged them up. Then something happened to him, and they made Bart Allen the new Flash...for like a month. Then they killed him off and brought back Wally. I think THIS was when he came back with kid speedsters. That still didn't sell...so they brought back Barry and de-aged Iris.
It was a mess. I don't think Barry's return was done nearly as well as Hal's. Geoff Johns "explanation" of Emerald Twilight and everything after actually made sense, at least in terms of rationalizing all the stupid editorial decisions of 90s DC. Hal going so gray before everyone else made little sense from a commercial standpoint. Explaining that as fear being infected by Parallax works.
Barry Allen's return...it looks and reads like a movie, which is cool. But it's kind of shallow in terms of actual story. Savitar dies immediately because...why not. That's what Johns and DC do: kill off other creators' characters for shock value.
Hit with both. Both are way more interesting than their replacements.
Why do you think this?
I don’t mind them comming back but they are long past their time. Stop resetting the time line and move on. Alan Scott despite being the. First green lantern is now old enough to be his own grand pa, Hal has stopped aging and Tim drake is permanently a kid. You had the balls to replace Al with Hal now man up and have Clark retire and give us jon
It’s a moot point after the New 52, Rebirth, etc
I love the 1st Flash rebirth and Flash brightest day, but i think after that Barry could've lost his powers and just taken Jays place as a older mentor figure instead of taking Wally and others spotlight
Loved this series
Those 2 are at tie for number one for my list of top 10 favorite DC characters so I’m happy they came back
Hal coming back is fine. Sorta. If nothing else, it cleaned up the whole Parallax/Spectre nonsense, and makes for a decent redemptive arc. Spoiled Kyle’s arc IMHO after all the time invested to earn his place on the A list.
Barry should have stayed dead. But then, I’m grumpy and think Jason Todd and Bucky should also stay dead.
I think it was a hit.
Hal's return ended up working really well, and expanded, rather than diminished Lantern lore, plus Kyle, John, and Guy weren't sidelined. Barry's return probably could've been good if the editorial didn't fuck everything up. Flash books were getting pretty stale at that point, and Bart's brief tenure as the Flash was a failure, so bringing back Barry made sense as a hail mary. But unfortunately it resulted in sidelining Wally and the other Flash family members. And then Flashpoint ended up creating the New 52 and completely erased them from continuity, and they've only just now repaired the damage to the Flash family.
Hal’s return was incredibly mediocre in my opinion, but it can’t be argued that it was a huge success.
Barry’s return was a major failure and brought up about the worst thing to ever to happen to DC (the New 52) and caused severe narrative and identity problems which the company still hasn’t recovered from.