Ever thought of what the Flash will be without the Speed Force? Will he be able to call himself the Flash then? I mean it is the Speed Force that gives him his super quick sprinting prowess right? What happens when the Flash decides to trade his speed for strength? Is he still the Flash or is he something else? This is a question that is answered by the DC Comics when they introduce a mysterious new force of energy that grants its wielder the ability to manipulate strength. And the Flash just got a key to opening a door to this new dimension. Presenting – Cut off from the Speed Force, The Flash gains access to the mysterious Strength Force!!
SPOILER ALERT: The following article contains major spoilers for The Flash #54. If you still have not read it yet, we urge you to look away….
The milestone event that was Dark Nights: Metal has far-reaching complications for the whole DC Universe. Apart from unleashing a slew of villains that the heroes had a hard time dealing with, it also made sure that the DC Universe we know and love is forever scarred with the wounds inflicted by the ensuing battle. The Source Wall, an object of Infinite power, is busted. There is a gaping hole in its chest. The Source Wall was what kept the energies outside our universe from meddling with the laws of physics inside the universe. Now with the Source Wall busted, three other dimensional energies have crept into the mainstream DC Universe. They are the Strength force, the Still Force and the Sage Force.
Much like the Speed Force, the other three forces are just what they sound like. The Speed force gives access to limitless speed. The Strength force gives you the power to become super strong, possibly even stronger than Superman. The Still force gives you the power to slow down objects on a molecular level and the Sage Force wielders can become infinitely more intelligent. And the Flash just traded of his connection to the peed Force to gain access to the Strength Force.
You can thank Hunter Zolomon for this blunder. After revealing the existence of other forces of energy that are alternatives to the Speed Force in ‘Flash War’, Barry Allen starts to investigate these energies. He is accompanied by Commander Cold, a descendant of Captain Cold from the 25th Century. Cold is now stuck in the present timeline after Barry and Wally broke the time-traveling powers of the Speed Force when they overused its capabilities.
The Justice League is tasked with keeping the Still Force in check. The Strength Force though decided to go the mischievous way. It first possessed the Trickster and turned him into a brawny freak with amazing levels of strength. Then after Flash and Trickster are imprisoned in iron heights, the Strength Force, a semi-sentient being, decides to jump ship into Barry Allen. And thus, the super strong Flash is born.
The Flash is now left to deal with Commander Cold and Warned Wolfe, who see the scarlet wrestler as an enemy. Barry Allen is no more the fastest man alive but the Strongest Man Alive. He uses his Strength Force powers to maximum effect, and finds out the new use of his abilities. He correctly assumes that his strength is now comparable to Superman’s.
The connection to the Strength Force also gives Barry the power to manipulate gravity and to increase and decrease his body mass at will. After defeating a slew of henchmen, Barry’s connection to the Strength Force is severed and he returns back to his normal self, i.e. he is back to being the speedster as we know and love him to be.
The Strength Force is not gone though. After Barry burns it out, what is left of it is transferred back to the Trickster, who ‘dies’ a good man while trying to hold the falling roof so that the others could escape. When the dust clears, neither the Trickster nor the Strength Force are anywhere to be seen. If there is one thing we can make out of this hot mess, it is that we have not seen the last of the Strength Force.