FLASH v2: the First 125 issues
COVERED: 1-125 1987-97  (around the point I dropped the title)
KEY CREATORS:  Mike Baron, William Messner-Loebs, Mark Waid, Brian Augustyn (writers in the period covered); Jackson Guice, Greg Larocque, Mike Wieringo, Paul Ryan, etc. (artists)
OUTLINE: Super-speedster Wally West fights crime at superspeed while trying to get out of his predecessor (Barry's shadow (the latter is downplayed more as the series progresses)
STANDOUT ISSUES: The Rogue's Gallery Party (#__), finale of Return of Barry Allen (#79)
DUD ISSUE: The story Waid wrote where Wally travels to the future and finds that a society now exists only to worship him
OVERALL: The three creators discussed here (Millar and Morrison's run occurred after I dropped the title and is thus ignored since I can't really critique something I haven't read) make for an interesting pattern: Baron wrote Wally at his least mature point. Under Loebs Wally started to mature a bit, while Waid finished the maturing process. All this makes for an interesting process to watch. But are the runs any good in of themselves? Baron's run had an interesting edge to it, which Guice was suited for as artist. Having seen Wally as jerk in Legends I was a bit worried about how I would like the main series. As it happens Baron made Wally interesting because he was a bit of a jerk, tackling topics like adultery. He also gave us in the first story a very disturbing Vandal Savage. At the time the series started the issues were harder to find around where I lived than any other newsstand title, but when I found the usually only copy available, I felt very rewarded for my effort. A good quality mature title.
 Under Loebs the series lightened a bit, but in compensation we got a strong supporting cast (well drawn by Larocque) as well as the return of the Rogues. In many ways the interaction with the supporting cast became more interesting than the fights, and I found that I really didn't mind. Strong characterization here.
 Under Waid we start getting first person dialogue, with the surprising result that Wally starts becoming more one dimensional. While his thoughts are sometimes interesting, Wally starts to adopt a hero speech when talking "on duty" which is standard flat superhero speech. And after the strong Return of Barry Allen story, after which Wally gives up Barry's ghost to a degree, most subsequent changes involve more power rather than any personal development
RECOMMENDED OR NOT? Baron and Loebs are definitely recommended. On a monthly basis it rarely gets much better than this. I ceased to connect with Wally under Waid and despite one good story (Return of Barry Allen). I can't
recommend his run on the title.
CONTINUITY NOTES: Some pre-Crisis Wally stories are altered at points, more often under Waid than under Baron and Loebs, who tended not to refer back to pre-v2 stories