Of all the incarnations of the fastest man alive, the Flash mask has only been worn by a few who have gone by the same name. Even so, it is one of the most popular, as well as one of the best-designed, cowl-mask combinations DC has to offer.
The Flash mask made its first appearance on the face of Barry Allen, the second Flash. Barry based himself off of the first Flash (Jay Garrick), but made some modifications to his costume. Jay Garrick did not use any facial paraphernalia to hide his identity (although at the speeds he travelled, it would have been tough to spot his face). The only item on his head was a helmet with lightning bolts, which actually looks like it would slow him down. Barry came up with a more aerodynamic way to show his hero identity and leave a superhero legacy. The third Flash, Wally West (also known as the first Kid Flash), followed in his predecessor’s footsteps and used the Flash mask and cowl.
Other superheroes to have held the title of the Flash, as well as Impulse and Kid Flash, have used variations of the Flash mask, but only the second and third Flash used the original version that has become so famous.
In the Justice League animated series, Wally West takes the Flash mask and cowl off as if it’s part of the rest of his costume, similar to Batman’s mask and cowl. The most interesting thing about this version of the Flash mask, and is true of many other superhero masks, is how it makes the Flash’s eyes white when he is wearing it. But in the comics, Wally takes the Flash mask completely off. I guess that just shows how DC’s writers and artists don’t always collaborate when deciding details about superheroes.
The Flash mask has yet to be featured on the big screen (although it was used in the Flash TV series from the 90s), but Flash fans can only hope that the Flash project currently in development will make it to theaters. You can get a Flash mask made of vinyl for yourself right here. The only downside to it is that it doesn’t have much ventilation, since the only opening is at the neck and the eyeholes.
Jack Stewart is a writer for Superhero Legacy