DC UNIVERSE: REBIRTH #1 - Explaining the Two WALLY WESTs

"DC Universe: Rebirth #1" splash page part 2 of 4
Credit: DC Comics
Credit: DC Comics

Updated May 24, 2016: Since publication of this story DC Comics has revealed a third image of Wally West from DC Universe: Rebirth #1 without a spoiler warning, this time on its Facebook page. 

Original Story: Spoilers ahead for DC Universe: Rebirth #1.

Among all the excitement about the return of post-Crisis Wally West in DC Universe: Rebirth #1, there's one element of his return that's an even bigger surprise — there will apparently now be two Wally West speedsters in the DCU.

As seen in the DC Universe: Rebirth #1 pages that leaked Friday afternoon and subsequent official preview pages released to the comic book press and USA Today, DC now has two Wallys in their Rebirth’ed universe. And both wear a Kid Flash costume, though the original Wally is seen in a brand new costume at the end of the special.

Credit: DC Comics

According to the special due Wednesday, the two Wallys are established as cousins who had never met, named after the same great-grandfather, Wallace West. The older, original Wally is Rudy West’s son. The newer, younger Wally is Rudy’s brother Daniel West’s son. Both share an aunt (Rudy and Daniel’s sister), Iris West.

“I was as close to Iris as I was far from Daniel,” explains the original Wally in narration.

Diving deeper, the just-returned-from-the-past Wally is older (but younger than his last pre-Flashpoint appearance) white, red-headed speedster. The character was introduced in 1959 and started as a Kid Flash, one of the members of the Teen Titans, but then graduated to taking over the Flash mantle as an adult in the 1980's - all continuity that is now, apparently, reestablished. He disappeared from continuity when DC rebooted their universe in 2011, but now he's back. And Newsarama has learned that he'll be co-starring with other adult, former Teen Titans in the new Titans series by writer Dan Abnett.

Credit: DC Comics

But there's also the younger, more-recently-introduced, "New 52" version of Wally West, a black teenager. Flash Rebirth writer Josh Williamson told Newsarama that the "kid" version of Wally West will evolve into the new Kid Flash within the pages of the Flash title (as confirmed by DC Universe: Rebirth #1), then will be part of the Teen Titans title.

Williamson said that there will be a "twist" with Wally's evolution, which hints that maybe the older Wally will be part of mentoring the younger one.

While the existence of two Wally West’s now has a simple explanation, it isn’t the only character ‘duplication’ that is emerging as DC works to undo some of the problems that arose after the company's "New 52" reboot in 2011, which had eliminated many of the company's best-loved legacy characters. Now, in the Rebirth’ed DCU, it appears that there will be two Lois Lanes, and we’re still not sure how many Clark Kents.

 

Credit: Ethan Van Sciver (DC Comics)

 

 

Titans: Rebirth #1 real cover
Titans: Rebirth #1 real cover
Credit: DC Comics
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