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CSBG Archive

The Greatest Christmas Stories Ever Told! – #8

The countdown continues with 1992’s “One Perfect Gift” from Flash #73 by Mark Waid, Greg LaRocque and Ray Richardson…

In “One Perfect Gift,” Wally and his girlfriend, Linda Park (they had only gotten together a few issues ago, but they were already such a good couple that it felt longer – damn, Bill Loebs did such a great job setting Waid up for the Wally/Linda relationship) are celebrating Christmas with Joan and Jay Garrick (the Golden Age Flash).

Wally is being a bit of…well…a bit of a pest…

While on patrol, Jay asks Wally what he wants for Christmas. Wally seems to be not overly thrilled…

The dedication to Denny O’Neil is extremely apropos, as this story definitely evokes many Denny O’Neil Christmas stories in old issues of Batman.

Finally, after the story had a traditional (although very well told) resolution, Waid gives us a brilliant epilogue…

and the reveal of who is at the door takes the issue to a WHOLE other level. The last page actually WAS reprinted in a trade that collected #74-79 (hint: That story was called “The Return of Barry Allen”)!

Wow, this really was a great issue. LaRocque and Richardson did a fine job on the artwork and Waid just killed it from a plot and characterization stand-point. This was roughly a year into his Flash run (it was issue #73) and he already had put his stamp on the book as a whole, and there was a lot more good stuff to come in the future!!!

5 Comments

liked this story mostly how wally proved that he has gained some wisdom with his xmas speech. and also joe managing to be still working at the store. from a nice manager. plus wally saying he has all he needs right there

Arguably one of the top 3 single issue stories from Mark Waid’s Flash run (the others being #91 and #0). EXCELLENT stuff.

This also happens to make 6 from my list. I suspect that I’ll see just one more, unless CSBG actually has vastly different tastes than I’ve come to know.

I’m with Anonymous. This was one of the greatest stories Waid did. Just the art alone made it wonderful, but then you add in the lovely Christmas plot and the outstandingly on-target dialogue? Beautiful stuff.
That was followed with an arch of equally beautiful stuff.

Man, I miss Waid on The Flash. Elderly Joan and Jay Garrick.
And Wally (he was such the big kid.) :)

Why doesn’t DC do stuff like this anymore? Instead we get things like Forever Evil for Christmas. :(

“Wally, are you expecting a visit from the Man in Red” Joan says (meaning Santa Claus).

When Wally opens the door, the man is in a red suit; but is not fat, bearded, or Santa. :-)

Great little bit by Waid.

Wasn’t the running joke duing Wai’d interview with Brian a few years back, that his return to Flash bombed and that he “shouldn’t be allowed on a Flash book again for awhile.” I guess the age old adage be careful what you wish for, you just might get it….

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