Undoubtedly, Flash is the most iconic speedster in the world of comic books, as he is often the only character that people think of whenever they think about the fastest heroes of all time. But while Flash may be fast, he isn’t like Superman, who is fast both on the ground and in the air. That’s because Flash is almost always grounded. But can Flash actually fly?
Technically, Flash doesn’t have the powers of flight because his only powers are those associated with the Speed Force, which allows him to move, think, and heal fast. However, Flash can theoretically use his speed in a manner that allows him to fly, as he can use his limbs like a helicopter’s propellers.
The thing about the Flash is that he can use his powers in many different creative ways, which means that the limits of his powers are only decided by the limits of his own creativity. That means the Flash can be creative enough and do many different things, such as flight. Now, let’s look at whether or not the Flash is capable of flight.
Flight isn’t one of the Flash’s powers
The ‘fastest man in the world’ is often a title that’s associated with Flash because this is the most iconic speedster in the world of comic books. Of course, many different characters have used the name “the Flash.” These include Jay Garrick, Barry Allen, and Wally West. Allen may be the most iconic Flash, but West is said to be the fastest one out of all of them.
Unlike other speedster characters that can move fast because their physiologies were built that way (Superman, for example), Flash can move at blinding speeds because he is a conduit of the Speed Force, created when Barry Allen received his powers. The Speed Force is a cosmic entity that can generate energy that allows its conduits to move incredibly fast, and that’s why Flash and all of the other Speed Force conduits generate electrical charges whenever they use their powers.
Generally speaking, a Speed Force conduit like Flash can move, think, and heal faster than anyone else. The Speed Force allows the user to produce energy that allows them to move at speeds that rival the speed of light. And Flash and the other conduits can even extend their powers all the way down to the molecular level as they can vibrate their individual molecules to phase through objects.
In a way, everything about Flash is fast, as he can talk, think, and move at speeds beyond human comprehension. He even perceives different moments at slower speeds than most people, so he can react faster than most other characters. And Flash’s speed has allowed him to perform many feats, including breaking the laws of time and space to travel through time and change the course of history.
But while Flash is fast and can perform many unimaginable things due to how fast he is, the thing about him is that he was never capable of flight as far as his powers were concerned. The Speed Force doesn’t grant Flash the ability to fly, which means that flight isn’t one of Flash’s standard powers.
This is unlike most of the other superpowered members of the Justice League. Superman, Wonder Woman, Martian Manhunter, and Green Lantern, among others, are capable of flight, as this ability is part of their standard powers. As such, they don’t have to do anything extra to achieve flight.
In Flash’s case, he doesn’t come with the powers of flight as part of his standard package of powers. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that he can’t fly. And that’s something we are about to look at.
But Flash can use his powers to fly
As mentioned, Flash can’t fly as far as the Speed Force is concerned. But the thing about the Speed Force is that it grants Flash abilities that allow him to be creative. For example, the ability to phase through objects by vibrating his molecules incredibly fast was something that Flash simply discovered. In that sense, as long as Flash can use his speed creatively, he can perform feats that aren’t part of his standard powers and abilities.
At one point in the comics, Flash even said that he didn’t know what his powers allowed him to do because he simply discovered the things that his speed was capable of. No one taught him how to use his powers, and that’s why he decided to be the one to discover the limits of what the Speed Force allowed him to do.
In one instance during the Silver Age of comic books, Barry Allen jumped out of a plane and used the clouds as footholds. That means that he was running in the air instead of flying. He said the clouds are dense enough to run on as long as he steps on them so fast that they don’t immediately break. And since Flash only takes a fraction of a second to step on a cloud, he can use them as footholds, similar to how he can run across water without sinking.
Technically speaking, this isn’t flying because Flash isn’t suspending himself up in the air. But this was a creative way for him to use his powers in a manner that allowed him to travel in the air, just like most of the other members of the Justice League do.
But in the animated series ‘Justice League Unlimited,’ Wally West achieved something similar to flight. We all know that Flash can create strong winds by circularly moving his arms at very fast speeds. And he used the same logic to fly.
In that episode, Wally was falling out of a jet, and there was no way for him to break his fall because he can’t fly. That was when he decided to spin his arms incredibly fast to generate strong winds that allowed him to hover up in the air well enough so that he could land safely. As such, he used the same principle that helicopters and planes use to fly, using his arms as propellers that could suspend him in the air.
That means that Flash can perform many things if he is creative enough with his powers. Such feats include flight, as he displayed his ability to use his speed and the power of the Speed Force to generate strong enough winds that propelled him in the air. So, while flight isn’t part of his standard abilities, Flash is smart enough to know how to use his powers to be able to find a way to fly, albeit in a very crude manner.
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