Just like there’s been more than one character to hold The Flash mantle, the speedster’s iconic logo has evolved over the years too. The Flash is one of DC’s biggest heroes, with the character making his comic debut in 1940. Jay Garrick was the original Flash, a college athlete who suddenly gains the power of superspeed. The character has been reinvented many times in the decades since, with Barry Allen or Wally West tending to be most popular versions of The Flash.
The Flash has made his way to live-action in many guises too, from the 1990s TV series starring John Wesley Shipp to Ezra Miller’s Barry Allen in the DCEU Justice League. Grant Gustin also plays a version of Barry Allen on The CW’s The Flash. While the character hasn’t become quite as iconic as other DC heroes like Batman or Superman, possibly due to having more than one character donning the costume over the years, The Flash remains one of the biggest heroes in the DC library,
Here’s a quick guide to the different heroes that have assumed The Flash identity and the character's evolving logo.
Golden Age Flash Logo
Jay Garrick’s Flash origin story involved the college student and athlete inhaling hard water vapors during a smoking break in his lab, granting him superhuman speed and reflexes, though this was later retconned. Garrick’s costume stands apart from later incarnations, with Jay donning a red shirt with a large lightning bolt emblazoned on it.
Silver Age Flash Logo
Barry Allen became the Silver Age Flash in 1956 and is (arguably) the most famous incarnation of the superhero. Allen was a scientist who gains his power after being struck by lightning, which granted him superspeed. He named himself The Flash after his hero Jay Garrick, with his emblem being a lightning bolt in the center of his red costume.
Golden Age Flash Logo
Following Allen’s death, his nephew Wally West took up The Flash title. Wally actually gained his powers through a repeat of the same accident as his uncle and became sidekick Kid Flash for a time, first donning a mini version of Allen’s suit before gaining a yellow costume with a bright red lightning bolt emblem. West took Allen’s costume when he took over as The Flash, though the suit was modified to match the costume from the 1990’s TV series, giving the logo a more prominent bolt.
Bart Allen Flash Logo
Bart Allen is the grandson of Barry Allen and first acted as a sidekick to Wally West named Impulse. He later became Kid Flash, before finally becoming The Flash himself for a brief time. While his Kid Flash outfit and logo are quite different, complete with bright red bolt, his Flash costume presents a traditional take on the emblem.
Live-Action Barry Allen Logo
Barry Allen has been busy in live-action, with John Wesley Shipp’s 1990's version wearing a bright red suit with a gold bolt on the chest. The Flash 2014 TV series draws inspiration from the Silver Age look for the logo, but the main suit itself has more muted colors. Ezra Miller’s Justice League outfit suffers from something of a busy design, with the emblem disappearing somewhat between the armor plates.