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DC Database

Quote1.png Hear me, Keystone City! Your beloved Flash, who stupidly fights crime, at last has a Rival that can equal him! He is finished -- and I have done it! I -- the RIVAL! Quote2.png
Rival src

Edward Clariss is the Rival, the archenemy of the Golden Age Flash, Jay Garrick.


Clariss was a chemistry professor at the university attended by Jay Garrick. He believed he had recreated the formula that gave Garrick his speed. Bitter at the rejection of his research claims by the scientific community, Clariss became a criminal, wearing a darker version of the Flash's outfit. The effects of his version of the formula, however, proved to be temporary and he was defeated when it was expended.[1]


The Rival reappeared a few months later, and in battling the Flash, he reached light speed and vanished.

Decades later, following the reformation of the Justice Society of America, Clariss was retrieved from the Speed Force by the interdimensional supercriminal Johnny Sorrow, who invited him to join the new Injustice Society. Now composed of pure speed energy, Clariss possessed Garrick's friend and fellow Golden Age speedster, Max Mercury. To get the Flash's attention, Rival committed a series of swift, gruesome murders, at locations that, when mapped, spelled out a message:

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  • Speed Force Conduit: Speed force conduits possess a connection to the Speed Force, a cosmic force that allows its users to push the boundaries that keep time and space. As a conduit of the Speed Force, all aspects of their physiology are accelerated and enhanced.[2]
    • Accelerated Healing: By having a connection to the speed force, every speed force conduit has an incredibly fast healing factor and can heal from most injuries in seconds and devastating injuries in minutes.[3]
    • Enhanced Senses: The Speed Force enhances the speedster's senses, allowing them to perceive and process thoughts faster than the normal person.[4]
    • Phasing: Speed Force conduits can tap into the Speed Force to vibrate their molecules in a way to achieve intangibility for short bursts, allowing them to phase through objects.[5]
    • Speed Force Aura: The Speed Force manifests an aura around the speedster and whatever they are carrying, protecting them from adverse effects of their speed, such as friction with the air.[6]
      • Superhuman Durability: The Speed Force Aura also protects speedsters from kinetic impacts, which in turn, makes them much more durable and resistant to injury than any normal human.[7]
    • Superhuman Stamina: The Speed Force grants its conduits with a great increase of stamina, allowing them to fight or run much longer than the average person. Although a great increase, it is not unlimited.[4]
    • Superhuman Speed: The universal factor of being a Speed Force conduit grants its user with imperceptible amounts of speed. All powers that conduits possess derives from their speed.[4]. This also confers:
      • Superhuman Agility: The speedster's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to superhuman levels. This allows them to easily maneuver while moving at superhuman speed.[4]
      • Superhuman Reflexes: In conjunction with their enhanced senses, The speedster's reflexes are heightened immesurably, allowing them to dodge or react faster than normal.[4]
    • Vortex Creations: Speed Force conduits are able to create vortices of air by running in circles or rotating their extremities at super-speed. These vortices can be used for a number of effects.[8]


  • Chemistry Dr. Edward Clariss was a leading chemistry authority, both in Europe and the U.S., but his greatest discovery, Heavy Water Gas, was rejected by the scholarly community. This indignity embittered him into criminal insanity.


  • Edward Clariss' Heavy Water Gas was an imperfect replication of Jason Garrick's accidental formulation, and its super-empowering effects were temporary.


  • Clariss assembled amplifiers, microphones, and a miniature electromagnetic plant to create a convincing illusion of a hovering lightning bolt which made mysterious announcements.

  • Although this character was originally introduced during DC's Earth-Two era of publication, their existence following the events of the 1985–86 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths remains intact. However, some elements of the character's Pre-Crisis history may have been altered or removed for Post-Crisis New Earth continuity, and no longer apply.
  • Both Clariss and the Second Reverse-Flash recreated the events that gave their respective counterparts their powers, thus gaining super-speed powers of their own.
  • Edward Clariss is also known as the Golden Age Reverse Flash.[citation needed]



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Flash Villain(s)
This character, team, or organization, is or was primarily an enemy of any or all of the various incarnations of the Flash. This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Flash Villains."

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Justice Society Villain(s)
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This character, team or organization is or was primarily an enemy of the Justice Society, in any of its various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Justice Society Villains" category.