WARNING! The Following Article Contains SPOILERS For The Flash #47.
The opening scene of DC's long awaited Flash War event finally explains the coming conflict between Barry Allen and Wally West. As The Flash #47 opens, the two men known as The Flash are close to an all-out fight over Wally West's plan to restore the universe to how it was before the Flashpoint event that relaunched DC's New 52 Universe.
For those who may have forgotten or missed out, the 2011 Flashpoint storyline focused on Barry Allen, and how he had disrupted the DC timeline by going back in time to save his mother from being slain by his arch-enemy, Eobard Thawne. The resolution of Flashpoint resulted in a reboot of DC Comics' history, and the creation of what became known as The New 52 Universe.
A controversial move that was addressed in 2016, as the timeline was altered again with DC Rebirth. The changes arose when the original Wally West (Barry Allen's first sidekick) fought his way into the new universe from outside of time. Now that Wally has learned how much he truly lost in Flashpoint, he may be impossible to stop.
Recently, shortly after making his existence known to his beloved aunt, Iris West, Wally began to experience painful migraines, as he had visions of the pre-Flashpoint DC Universe overlapping the current reality. Still, it hasn't been clear what, if anything, could actually force Wally and Barry into a "war."
The rest of The Flash #47 begins to explain how things got to the scene on the first page. The action of the issue sees Barry, Wally, and the other Wally West (the current Kid Flash) facing off against The Renegades - a group of superheroes from the 25th century, who came to the past to arrest Iris West for ending the life of Eobard Thawne.
While Iris is willing to go to the future to defend her actions as self-defense, Wally is reluctant to risk losing his aunt again so soon after their reunion. He's also unwilling to trust The Renegades, who base their identities on 21st Century villains like Captain Cold and Golden Glider. Cooler heads eventually prevail, with The Renegades claiming to have a cure in the future for Wally's condition, what they diagnose as "temporal seizures."
Barry, Iris and the two Wallys travel forward in time with The Renegades, but the elder Wally West winds up traveling somewhere else. He finds himself in the ruins of The Flash Museum, guided through exhibits showcasing moments from his life that seem familiar yet foreign by a mysterious voice.
The issue concludes as the voice is revealed to belong to Hunter Zolomon, A.K.A. Zoom, who stands before the cases holding the costumes of Jai West and Iris West II - Wally's children from the original timeline - as Zoom declares that he is going to help Wally save his family.
Given Barry's own experiences in trying to alter the past to save his family in Flashpoint, it is easy to understand why he would be worried about Wally making the same mistakes that he did. Yet Wally's point of view proves equally sympathetic, with this issue confirming that he not only lost his wife when reality was written to create The New 52 Universe, but also his children.
It's unclear precisely what ultimate effect this may have upon The DC Comics Universe as a whole. Other comics have confirmed that the pre-Flashpoint reality still exists in some form or fashion and Wally's presence has helped restore some people's memories of the old timeline, including Barry Allen, his friends in The Titans and Wally's old girlfriend, Frankie "Magenta" Kane.
Future issues of this series will tell the tale, but now more than ever The Flash War seems unlikely to end neatly.
The Flash #47 is available now from DC Comics.