Last week, comic book writer and artist John Byrne posted about how he would have brought Barry Allen back if he’d had the opportunity during the 1990s, as he hinted when responding to speculation about the cover for Wonder Woman v.2 #109. (IIRC, the Flash in the issue was either a clone or a robot. It’s been a long time since I’ve read it.)
Simple, really. It’s very, very, very hard to “kill” a character who can travel in Time. How old was Barry when he “died” in CRISIS? For all we know, he could have been 106.
My idea was to simply have Barry pop into existence in the “current” DCU, returning from one of his trips thru time to find he’d “missed his target” because of disruptions caused by CRISIS. He would then live out whatever life (nature and duration) the Powers that Be would allow.
This is similar to the way Mark Waid did bring Professor Zoom “back” for “The Return of Barry Allen” and the way a young time-traveling Hal Jordan spent some time in the then-present DCU for “Emerald Knights.” It’s also not far from the loophole Marv Wolfman placed in the character’s death in Crisis on Infinite Earths. The main difference is that in Wolfman’s plan, it would be Barry Allen during his final run, rather than a Barry from earlier in his career.
Byrne goes on to add:
(I also had an idea that, since Wally was being The Flash, Barry would take on another identity for a while, knowing that sooner or later he had to go die in CRISIS. But when the moment came, Wally would bushwhack him, take his place, and that would actually have been Wally we saw die.)
Interestingly, Peter David did essentially the same thing in his final Supergirl arc, “Many Happy Returns,” in which the Earth-1 Supergirl’s rocket gets diverted and lands on Post-Crisis Earth. After a few adventures, the Post-Crisis Supergirl gets in the rocket and takes her place, leading to a story of a 1990s heroine in a Silver-Age world. It doesn’t end well, for either of them.
Found in this week’s Lying in the Gutters, which also features another Flash-related story, short enough I might as well just quote the whole thing:
The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre in Pawtucket, Rhode Island is having an online auction to raise funds for its non profit theatre. One of the items is a “Flash: Rebirth” #1 coupled with a TPB of “Flash: Terminal Velocity,” signed by the late great Mike Wieringo.