With the ongoing delays surrounding Ezra Miller’s take on The Flash, maybe it’s time to reconsider that franchise’s direction. The natural progression would usually be Wally West, but DC Entertainment has shown a high level of disrespect to the character in recent years. Barry Allen has even had certain characteristics taken from Wally since he reclaimed the mantle of The Flash. Besides that, it’s hard to justify any incarnation of Wally West within the DCEU or “World of Wonders” since that establishes a legacy from Barry Allen. If Warner Bros. would like to move onto a new version of The Flash, it may be smart to develop a new version of Jay Garrick…the original Flash.
Note: I think Ezra Miller is a great actor but unfortunately Warner Bros. has mishandled The Flash as a film franchise. The production has been surrounded by chaos which has only augmented since the alienation of Snyder’s vision from the DCEU. My personal favorite Flash is Wally West, in fact he’s my 3rd favorite all-time character, but sadly you can’t properly do Wally West as The Flash until you do Barry Allen’s tenure. Jay Garrick can skip that.
Which Version of Jay Garrick?
Jay Garrick was originally introduced in Flash Comics #1 in 1940. He gained his superhuman abilities during a hard water accident becoming the first Flash and an active member of the Justice Society of America (JSA). In publication, Jay Garrick was phased out for Barry Allen and other rebooted versions of heroes such as Green Lantern and The Atom. He was re-introduced into comics as an alternate universe counterpart of The Flash before their universes were merged. When this happened, Jay Garrick became the precurser to Barry Allen as The Flash in canon, which also resulted in Jay usually being depicted as an older man just like other JSA members.
However, during the New 52, a younger version of Jay Garrick was introduced for the Earth 2 publication line. This version of the character, like other Earth 2 characters, was a modern reimagining of Golden Age DC characters. In the rebooted Earth 2 canon, Jay Garrick was gifted extraordinary abilities such as superhuman reflexes, electrokinesis, and superhuman speed by the god Mercury. He then used this to join the Earth 2 version of the Justice Society which was called The Wonders alongside Green Lantern, Hawkgirl, and more characters.
Jay Garrick & JSA Connects With Future DC Films
Besides avoiding the baggage of Barry Allen, utilizing Jay Garrick could provide greater connections to active DC Film franchises. These include Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Shazam, and Black Adam. With Wonder Woman, she herself is the daughter of Zeus which immediately connects her to the Greek pantheon of Old Gods. In her solo film, it was alluded to that the Gods of Olympus were killed by Ares although a few may have escaped to survive among humans. Out of the many Greek Gods to survive, Hermes or his Roman counterpart Mercury would be a perfect character to use.
This shared history with the Greek Gods connects to Aquaman in a similar manner, as their founding has connections to Poseidon. With Shazam and Black Adam, their powers stemming from Greek, Roman, and Egyptian pantheons can be a connective tissue with characters such as The Flash and Doctor Fate. This connection can be further strengthened by the Justice Society’s inclusion in the Black Adam movie. With this shared connection to Old Gods, it could be an interesting bedrock for the core group of DC heroes.
Why It’s Unlikely
While Jay Garrick would be a fresh direction for The Flash on the big screen, unfortunately that may translate to the lack of certain Flash mythology including the speed force and rouge’s gallery. The speed force could still be retained with Jay Garrick, but it likely wouldn’t have the same introduction or exploration as it would under Barry Allen or Wally West. Warner Bros. would likely never replace Barry Allen at this point since they’ve had a few opportunities to drop the Ezra Miller project and didn’t. Geoff Johns, a major player at DC Entertainment, is also responsible for Barry Allen’s return to DC main canon.
With these factors at play, it looks certain Barry Allen will be The Flash of the DCEU…even if he’s creatively constricting the franchise from a fresh and dynamic rebirth on the big screen. What do you think of Ezra Miller leaving the role of Barry Allen within the DCEU? Leave your comments down below and feel free to follow me at @JBaldera27 on Twitter!