The Flash (or simply Flash) is the name of several superheroes appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by writer Gardner Fox and artist Harry Lampert, the original Flash first appeared in Flash Comics #1 (cover date January 1940/release month November 1939). Nicknamed "the Scarlet Speedster", all incarnations of the Flash possess "superspeed", which includes the ability to run, move, and think extremely fast, use superhuman reflexes, and seemingly violate certain laws of physics.

Thus far, at least five different characters‚ÄĒeach of whom somehow gained the power of "the¬†Speed Force"‚ÄĒhave assumed the mantle of the Flash in DC's history: college athlete¬†Jay Garrick¬†(1940‚Äď1951, 1961‚Äď2011, 2017‚Äďpresent), forensic scientist¬†Barry Allen¬†(1956‚Äď1985, 2008‚Äďpresent), Barry's nephew¬†Wally West¬†(1986‚Äď2011, 2016‚Äďpresent), Barry's grandson¬†Bart Allen¬†(2006‚Äď2007), and Chinese-American Avery Ho (2017‚Äďpresent). Each incarnation of the Flash has been a key member of at least one of DC's premier teams: the¬†Justice Society of America, the¬†Justice League, and the¬†Teen Titans.

The Flash is one of DC Comics' most popular characters and has been integral to the publisher's many reality-changing "crisis" story lines over the years. The original meeting of the Golden Age Flash Jay Garrick and Silver Age Flash Barry Allen in "Flash of Two Worlds" (1961) introduced the Multiverse storytelling concept to DC readers, which would become the basis for many DC stories in the years to come.

Like his Justice League colleagues Wonder Woman, Superman and Batman, the Flash has a distinctive cast of adversaries, including Gorilla Grodd, the various Rogues (unique among DC supervillains for their code of honor) and the various psychopathic "speedsters" who go by the names Reverse-Flash or Zoom. Other supporting characters in Flash stories include Barry's wife Iris West, Wally's wife Linda Park, Bart's girlfriend Valerie Perez, friendly fellow speedster Max Mercury, and Central City police department members David Singh and Patty Spivot.

A staple of the comic book DC Universe, the Flash has been adapted to numerous DC films, video games, animated series, and live-action television shows. In live-action, Barry Allen has been portrayed by Rod Haase for the 1979 television special Legends of the Superheroes, John Wesley Shipp in the 1990 The Flash series and Grant Gustin in the 2014 The Flash series, and by Ezra Miller in the DC Extended Universe series of films, beginning with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016). Shipp also portrays a version of Jay Garrick in the 2014 The Flash series. The various incarnations of the Flash also feature in animated series such as Superman: The Animated Series, Justice League, Batman: The Brave and the Bold and Young Justice, as well as the DC Universe Animated Original Movies series.

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