The Mystery of Two Wally Wests Explained
It's after the death of the Sanctuary heroes that things get interesting. So far, it would make sense for readers to see this reveal and, knowing how distraught Wally West has been over the loss of his wife and children (whom he recently remembered ever existed), chalk all of the deaths up to an accident. A terrible, horribly tragic accident that may change how the world sees The Flash, sure, but an accident nonetheless. But what Wally decided to do next is what is going to paint this tragedy as 'villainous' or out of character for a hero like The Flash. But there's a catch fans should consider.
Moments after realizing that the Speed Force blasted all the heroes to death, Wally clearly made up his mind to do... something. We can guess for now, but don't yet know for sure. But for whatever reasons he may have, what he did is spelled out in his confession. First, he bought himself time by stopping the only two Sanctuary patients who hadn't yet exited the facility: Booster Gold and Harley Quinn. They believed they were leaving their simulation therapy chambers and witnessing the other murder Wally along with everyone else... when in reality, Wally was giving himself time to do what he knew he must.
From there he used his intellect and forensic experience to stage the crime scene knowing just how Batman would interpret it to, once again, give himself time. Five days' time, it seems, as the strangest detail discovered in the investigation was that the Wally dead beside Roy Harper's was five days older than everyone else's. And that, too, ties into the last mystery that could make all of Wally's actions make sense.
What Did Wally West Need To Do?
After staging the crime scene to give himself time to complete whatever mission he set for himself, and committing to see it through, Wally traveled forward in time five days to meet his future self... and kill him. That was the body placed among the dead, and that was the Wally who put those five days to use completing their mission of "truth." By now the Heroes in Crisis series has followed the intervening five days through to the moment Wally arrives.
Which will hopefully explain the cliffhanger scene of the previous issue, with Wally apologizing to Poison Ivy for having to witness his death (at the hands of the Wally who has just traveled forward from the Sanctuary bloodbath). It's as fuzzy as a typical time travel story gets, and is intentionally sketchy in the overall picture. And as we mentioned before, Wally's ultimate goal following the Speed Force accident is the only thing that will complete the story. Based on these few details, it seems Wally spent the five days releasing the hero confessions to Lois Lane, urging Superman to give a speech admitting that heroes suffer, struggle, and even break. And that if that is cause for fear to any citizen of the world, perhaps it will also be a sign to others that they are explicitly, visibly, publicly not alone in their suffering.
If one thing has been evident about this tale from writer Tom King and artists Clay Mann And Mitch Gerads, it's that the ending needs to arrive before it can truly be understood. Especially with one or two Sanctuary scenes that don't quite fit with Wally's account, either. But until then, at least fans know how the heroes died. What they died for might end up being the question readers should have been asking all along.
Heroes in Crisis #8 is available now from your local comic book store, or direct from DC Comics.