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|As a result of the New 52 in 2011, the entire line of DC characters was relaunched, incorporating properties belonging to the company's imprints: Wildstorm, Milestone, and Vertigo. As such, elements of this character's history have been altered in some way from the previous incarnation. For a complete list of all versions of this character, see our disambiguation page.|
In the year 2463, when he was a child, Eobard Thawne saw his father kill his mother. Later, he became connected to the Speed Force after being struck by a bolt of lightning and attempted to take over the Gem Cities, Central and Keystone City. However, it didn't work because the 21st Century superhero known as The Flash was revered as a legend, which caused the people to rebel against Thawne and fight in the Flash's name. Thawne found it unfair that despite their similar powers, Flash got a happy family life and that the people of the Gem Cities treated him like a god. He would then forcefully take over the cities and burn down the Flash Museum.
Finding the lost journals of Rip Hunter, he created the Cosmic Treadmill over the course of several years and crafted a plan to go back in time and tarnish the Flash's history and legacy. Jealous of how Barry's parents adored him and how much they loved each other, Thawne proceeded to destroy the Allen family exactly like his own one was, so that he'd have an "equal start" with the future Flash. He started his plan by destroying his father Henry and mother Nora's relationship. He would fund Henry's hematology lab with large sums of money, causing him to become more engrossed in his work to cure the deadliest blood-born diseases. This would put a strain on his marriage with Nora, leading to her having an extramarital affair with police officer Darryl Frye. On the day Henry received divorce papers from Nora and confronted her about them, Thawne murdered her and, with Henry's refusal to join him, threatened him with Barry's life unless he took the blame for the crime, leaving the boy who would one day become the Flash without his parents and in Darryl's care.
Having destroyed the Allen family's history, Thawne now desired to destroy the Flash's image. He would gather allies with distinct Speed Force-derived abilities throughout time by putting them in near death situations and then saving them. Once he gained their trust, he told them that they were "chosen" by the Speed Force and needed to kill a "demon" known as the Flash. Thawne would also recruit William Selkirk, who was left paralysed after a battle with two Flashes.
With his "acolytes" by his side, Thawne then began to put his plans in motion by arriving at a point in time when the Flash was an established hero, several years into his career. Finding ways to torment the Flash, Professor Zoom's first move in this time period was initiating for Henry to break out of jail, while also framing him for killing a guard in the escape. While the Flash was forced to deal with the police manhunt for his father, Thawne kidnapped Henry and continued his plot to ruin the Flash's history by framing him for putting a bomb in the Central City Police Department headquarters.
Face-to-face with the Flash, Thawne and his acolytes battled the scarlet speedster while he simultaneously attempted to use a power-stealing glove, which he had forced Henry to make, to take away the Flash's speed. However, his plan fell to pieces when his team betrayed him, having discovered their leader's true motives after Magali, his former acolyte whose age manipulation power he had previously stolen, exposed him. Running faster than he'd ever run before, Barry learned he had the power to actually speed up time, allowing him to arrest Thawne and have him imprisoned at Iron Heights.
From the 25th Century, Eobard Thawne was an only child when his parents were killed in an accident. In his loneliness, he became obsessed with the Flash, Barry Allen, a heroic speedster from the 21st Century. Eobard would dedicate his life to studying the Flash and researching his power source, the Speed Force. During his adulthood, Thawne miraculously received a time capsule containing the Flash's costume, from which he harnessed residual traces of the Speed Force to give himself access to its powers. Dissatisfied, Thawne sought to also become a hero like the Flash. However, due to the lack of opportunities for heroics in the future, Thawne instead created his own by endangering and then "saving" people to make himself look a hero.
Thawne was awestruck when Barry arrived in his time and taught him new ways to use his powers, with the two also bonding over their shared belief that "every second is a gift". Unfortunately for Eobard, Barry became aware of the truth behind his "heroics", and would turn him in to the authorities after defeating the rogue speedster. Desperate to prove himself to his hero, Thawne vowed to better himself. In prison, he underwent electroshock therapy and shared his knowledge with other inmates. He convinced the authorities that society would from him educating others as a professor instead of being behind bars, and worked hard from being a tour guide at the Flash Museum to becoming its curator, considering the museum his own.
Wanting to show Barry his rehabilitation and to be accepted again by his "best friend", Thawne traveled back in time to the 21st Century. Deeming it arrogant to think he was ready to become the Flash, he changed his costume to yellow, because it was the color that all the hero's partners wore. However, after witnessing Barry give Wally West a watch with the same advice he gave Eobard years ago inscribed, an enraged Thawne realized that he wasn't as special to Barry as he thought. Running back to the 25th Century, to the Flash Museum, it was there that Thawne realized his destiny. Creating his own "negative" version of the Speed Force and switching his emblem, Thawne became the Reverse-Flash. Believing that tormenting Barry is the only time that Barry will spend with him, Thawne made it his life's mission to ensure that the Flash lived in pain like he did, until his idol learned to treat him specially and see him as his "real" friend.
When Paradox attempted to take over the 25th Century, Thawne and the Renegades fought him. While Paradox beat the Renegades, Thawne defeated him with the aid of his lightning rod (which he had used to try to kill Iris West in the Pre-Flashpoint timeline), which he used to ground Paradox and deplete him of his paradox energy. He then rescued the civilians trapped in the wreckage, repaired the Flash Museum and worked with the Renegades and the Time Institute to create a special prison for Paradox in Iron Heights. For once in his life, people saw Thawne as a worthy successor to the Flash. Commander Cold called Thawne defeating Paradox his one good deed.
Sometime after defeating Paradox, Thawne traveled back in time and murdered Barry's mother Nora, though he claimed that there were many worse things he did to Barry. Barry's father Henry was falsely accused and sentenced for the crime, leaving the boy who would one day become the Flash without his parents. Thawne also killed Jorge Heart, the brother of Barry's future friend August Heart, who would go on to become Godspeed.
Thawne's murder of Nora had been replicated, years later, with a woman named Heather Macy in front of her son, who claims a "monster" did it, drawing Barry's interest. Barry subsequently sees a vision of him killing Thawne, which he believes could've been caused by the case's similarity to his mother's. After Macy's husband confesses to the crime, a figure resembling Thawne briefly stops by the murder scene, before speeding away. Barry later sees another vision of Thawne, who taunts Barry by telling him that his future is to run alone forever.
At one point, Thawne was a committee member of the The Society. After Deathstroke failed to appear before them, to be tried for "renouncing" evil and Deadline losing his hand, Thawne was sent to abduct him.
Deathstroke seemingly escaped confinement and kills every member of The Society, including Thawne. However, this was revealed to simply be part of a a hallucinogenic test by Hector Hammond. After Riddler deemed Deathstroke to still be evil, The Society had a philosophical debate. Thawne aruged that murder not maximising good is irrelevant to those that only want a good outcome for themselves, and then denied being evil, instead declaring himself "efficient". Shortly afterwards, Doctor Ikon broke in and escaped with Deathstroke, and Chairman Vandal Savage adjourned the inquiry.
Thawne, imprisoned in Iron Heights, was mysteriously struck by a bolt of lightning that restored memories of his previous life, including the events of Flashpoint. Fleeing Iron Heights, Thawne made his way to the Batcave, where he began beating and taunting Batman, explaining that he now remembered Flashpoint and his death at the hands of that timeline's Batman, Thomas Wayne. After beating Bruce to a pulp and shredding Thomas' letter, Thawne went to examine the mysterious button that Batman had been investigating and, interacting with the residual power, was teleported into the timestream, where he apparently discovered the button's true owner.
Just as the Flashpoint timeline was about to be erased, Thawne brought Thomas to the main timeline. Having taken revenge on his killer by stranding him in the very world he despised, where his son is him, Thawne resumed his time-travels. Shortly afterwards, he encountered the Flash and Batman, pursuing him on the Cosmic Treadmill.
Planning to undo Barry's life once again by turning him into his son and acolyte, Thawne outran the two and eventually made his way to where the button's radiation had led him. He demands the button's true owner to reveal himself, and when he does, Thawne becomes frightened for his life. Thawne then starts to become disintegrated by this being, and is teleported back into the batcave, burning in blue flames and claiming that he had seen "God." The Reverse-Flash then collapsed, seemingly dead.
Thawne's corpse was later moved to the S.T.A.R. Labs morgue. However, the Negative Speed Force resurrected and regenerated him. Thawne then returns to his home in the future, only to find it radically changed in light of his regained New Earth memories. Desiring to uncover the changes made to history, he then returns back to the past. He is present at Iris West's house when she arrives with her younger nephew, Wallace, following Multiplex's attack at Barry's birthday party, terrifying the pair.
Thawne interrogated the clueless pair over the alterations to the timeline, mentioning New Earth events. Wallace attempted to fight him off, but was savagely beaten while Thawne told him he was not Kid Flash or even the real Wally West. Upon realizing that Iris wasn't aware of Barry's secret identity in this timeline, he kidnapped and took her to the 25th Century, where he trapped Iris at the Flash Museum to lure Barry. After revealing his motives and taunting Barry over how he hurts everyone in his life, Thawne proceeded to savagely beat the Flash and unmasked him in front of Iris.
He then took Barry and Iris to a future where their children, the twins Dawn and Don, had become rogues that were laying waste to Central City, due to how the toll of being the Flash led to their father neglected them. After manipulating Flash over the pain and lies that followed him, he tricked him by making him run right into the Negative Speed Force alongside him, seemingly trapping his nemesis. He promptly returned back to the Flash Museum, where he immediately broke his 'promise' to leave Iris alone. However, before Thawne could do anything, a 'negative' Flash returned and attacked Thawne, who was amazed over how 'beautiful' his foe had become.
They fought across the timeline, during which Thawne urged Barry to ditch the Flash Family and instead become his friend and partner - a proposition that Barry instantly rejected. Returning to the future, their battle culminated in Barry taking the Negative Speed Force from his foe. Thawne, undeterred, stated that he will return as he always had, over and over again. In response, Iris disintegrated him with a ray gun from a nearby exhibit, killing him.
Thawne's death at Iris' hands sowed the seed for a rift between Barry and Wally, and was exploited by Hunter Zolomon. Furious over Thawne's several deaths, Zolomon sent the Renegades to arrest Iris for his murder, as part of a plan to engineer conflict between the Flashes. After later discovering that Thawne ruined his life via time travel, just like he did to Barry, a betrayed Zolomon sacrificed himself to repair the Force Barrier. Thawne's machinations in bringing the Flashpoint Batman to the main timeline also led to conflict between Bruce and Thomas Wayne, who sought to force his son to give up the Batman mantle.
The Flash Age
Unexpectedly, a future version of Barry was present outside the house at the time of Nora's murder. A surprised Thawne ambushed the Flash and, believing he came to stop him, gloated over him being too late. Flash, however, told him that he wasn't here for that, and instead came to find out how to defeat Paradox. Thawne was then shocked to learn that Paradox escaped. However, their fight was interrupted by a temporal shift, and Thawne chatised Barry for time-traveling "like a rookie again". Thawne then proposed to Barry that they team up to beat Paradox and save the multiverse, "as it always should have been".
Barry and Thawne then time traveled to the 25th Century Flash Museum, where Thawne despaired at the damage done before he retrieved his lightning rod. The pair then traveled to the past, from before the scientist named Chris became Paradox. Thawne told Barry that they were here to kill Chris, gleefully stated that it would be their "little secret", and argued that it is the only way to stop Paradox. Barry refused, so Thawne attempted to kill Chris himself, only for Barry to intervene. Barry then attempted to send Thawne back to Nora's death, only for Thawne to reveal that he was aware of all of his own future history and deaths. However, their fight was interrupted by the arrival of Paradox and the captured Godspeed. Paradox proceeded to kill his past self, amassing a large amount of paradox energy. Thawne then attempted to defeat Paradox using his lightning rod once again, only for Paradox to subdue him, snap his rod in half and erase the timeline.
Thawne, Barry and August then found themselves in Paradox's realm, where their attention was drawn to the time storm above, which - coupled with their own continued existence - made Thawne realize that the alternate timelines created by Paradox killing himself and various versions of Barry have not yet collapsed, and thus reality could still be saved. Paradox then arrived, boasting about his victory and unleashed his energy on the three speedsters. Thawne once again emphasised they must kill Paradox, with August agreeing. But Barry instead asked Thawne to use his expertise in time travel to save Chris from becoming Paradox in the first place. Thawne then traveled back to Barry's duel with the Turtle and saved Chris from being hit by the fight's energy, erasing both Paradox and his realm, to which Thawne went back to in order to help Barry and August escape. After they successfully returned to the restored timeline, Thawne attempted to leave, but was stopped by August, who sought to learn who killed his brother. Thawne then snapped August's neck as he revealed it was him. He remarked that no one would remember Godspeed in the future and quickly beaten an enraged Barry senseless before leaving, vowing to get his own "Reverse-Flash Family".
- Negative Speed Force Generation: Thawne created his own negative version of the Flash's Speed Force, with its own unique energy signature. He can tap into the energy as normal speedsters do with the positive Speed Force. The Negative Speed Force grants Thawne the power to move at incredible speeds, among many other abilities.
- Superhuman Speed: Thawne is capable of moving at vast superhuman speeds and is faster than Barry. His immense speed allows him to generate superhuman force, which allows him to deal devastating blows to opponents, as well as effortlessly hurl them with great force.
- Superhuman Reflexes: Thawne possesses reflexes far greater than a normal human being. This allows him to easily react to danger and events, and perceive the world in slow motion.
- Superhuman Stamina: Thawne's body can handle the stress of moving at superhuman speeds for long periods of time without getting tired or weak.
- Superhuman Agility: Thawne's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to superhuman levels. This allows him to easily maneuver while moving at superhuman speed.
- Superhuman Strength: Thawne possesses sufficiently enhanced strength, as he was able to effortlessly lift and drag the Flash around with one hand, deliver deadly blows with his fists and quickly break Wallace West's bones and tendones by applying pressure.
- Negative Speed Force Aura: The Negative Speed Force manifests a protective aura around Thawne's entire body that shields him from the negative effects of moving at super-speed, such as air friction and kinetic impacts.
- Superhuman Durability: Thawne can resist tremendous kinetic impact forces with ease. He was able to withstand hits from the Flash, while moving at intense speeds.
- Dimensional Travel: Thawne is able to travel in and out of the timestream, allowing him to travel to other planes of reality. He is also able to travel in and out of the Negative Speed Force.
- Electrokinesis: Thawne is able to generate the electrical energy that he draws from the Negative Speed Force. This lightning emanates off of him as red electrical arcs from all around his body, and from his eyes as streaks, especially when he moves at super speed. Thawne's lightning can interfere with, and fry electronics.
- Electromagnetism: Thawne possesses some level of magnetic manipulation, which he uses to control his suit's armor. Every time he releases his suit from his ring, the pieces of it are conducted by his lightning to form the suit around him.
- Life-Force Absorption: Thawne can use his negative energy to rapidly drain a person's life-force, by creating an electrical field around their head and focusing it with his hands.
- Enhanced Senses: The Negative Speed Force grants Thawne enhanced senses that allow him to perceive the world at a rate attuned his reaction speed.
- Molecular Acceleration: Thawne can vibrate his own molecular structure at varying degrees for a number of purposes, by adjusting to different frequencies.
- Intangibility: By vibrating his molecules on an atomic level, and by doing so at just the right frequency, Thawne can allow himself to become intangible, allowing people or objects to pass right through him.
- Phasing: By vibrating his molecules on an atomic level, and by doing so at just the right frequency, he can allow himself to become momentarily intangible, and phase through objects.
- Regeneration: Thawne can regenerate from injury much faster than any normal human, and is able to regrow entire body parts and organs.
- Retrocognition: After being hit by lightning in his cell at Iron Heights, Thawne gained the memories of his life before the Flashpoint, including his death at the hands of Thomas Wayne, despite these memories being erased from his mind after the Flashpoint. He also experiences every single one of his deaths, including those from prior timelines and versions of reality, at the same time.
- Shock Wave Projection: Thawne possess the ability to create very powerful sonic booms and shock waves with just the clap of his hands.
- Time Travel: Thawne can use his speed to freely travel throughout time, and does not need assistance from the Cosmic Treadmill. He is master of time travel and time manipulation.
- Reality Alteration: Thawne's ability to travel throughout the timestream allows him to manipulate events at will to satisfy his own needs. By taking his time within the moment and jumping back into the timestream before time restarts, Thawne can change history without shattering the timeline (and thus, without causing any side-effects, such as a Flashpoint).
- Paradoxical Existence: In a previous incarnation, Thawne was transformed into a living paradox when Barry Allen created the Flashpoint timeline, as he was running through the timestream when this happened. This makes Thawne (even in the current version of reality) immune to alterations to his personal history, making him the sole constant in any possible timeline and thus impossible to erase him from existence.
- Deception: Thawne organized each of his acolytes' origin stories, forcing them to trust him as he "saved" them at just the right time. He was also able to manipulate Barry into trusting him multiple times, only to subsequently betray him.
- Genius Level Intellect/Science: Thawne's brilliant mind and broad science acumen enabled him to harness residual energy traces off Flash's old costume and create a "negative" version of the Speed Force in order to fuel his own powers.
- Hand-to-Hand Combat (Advanced): Utilizing his speed, Thawne created an effective fighting style to combat all types of material opponents.
- Historiography: Thawne is very knowledgeable on world history and culture, spanning all the way back to Magali's ancient times. In addition to being an expert on the history of the Flash, Thawne has also memorized every version of his own entire history, past and future, including all the changes and deaths.
- Intimidation: Thawne's intimidating presence can be attributed to his immense power and sociopathic mentality.
- Leadership: Thawne led a team of his own "acolytes", dedicated to taking down the "demon" Flash.
- Mechanical Engineering: After discovering Rip Hunter's lost journals, Thawne was capable of building a Cosmic Treadmill, similar to the Flash's original one.
- Multilingualism: Thawne speaks English, Nahuatl, Spanish, and Zulu.
- Pedagogy: As a professor, Thawne shared his vast knowledge regarding the Flash and the Speed Force with others. As the leader of his acolytes, Thawne was concerned with teaching them how to best use their metahuman abilities, as well as other knowledge they would need to combat the Flash.
- Tactical Analysis: Thawne had been teaching tactics to his acolytes for centuries, preparing them for the battle against the Flash.
- Temporal Mechanics: Thawne holds expertise in the study and theory of time, being aware of and able to identify the "strange" nature of alterations to the timeline. He is also a master at both time travel and time manipulation, and can do something that other speedsters cannot - alter the timeline in the way he wants, without consequence.
- Costume: Thawne's costume is a near-exact duplicate of Barry's, but with the colors and emblem reversed (red and yellow are swapped, white is black). Also, unlike Barry's, his mask does not usually cover his chin. The New 52 costume was black and yellow, with a diamond red and black emblem.
- Costume Ring: Thawne possesses a ring, similar to (or the same as) the one owned by Flash, which he uses to store his costume in.
- Lightning Rod (Formerly): Thawne used to own a lightning rod that could channel the Speed Force into a destructive force.
- Power-Theft Glove (Formerly): Thawne briefly held a glove, created by Henry Allen, to steal the powers of others connected to the Speed Force.
- Reverse-Flash was created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino, first appearing in The Flash #139. However, in the Prime Earth continuity Reverse-Flash first appeared as part of the New 52 DC Universe in The Flash (Volume 4) #40 by Robert Venditti, Van Jensen, and Brett Booth.
- In the New 52, Thawne was an amalgam of both New Earth Zooms. Like the previous Eobard Thawne, he comes from the 25th century, and like Hunter Zolomon, he was haunted by the trauma of his father killing his mother. His powers were also based on both his New Earth self's Speed Force connection and Zolomon's chronokinesis.
- With DC Rebirth, Thawne is restored to his original status quo. His powers are once again superspeed derived from his Negative Speed Force and his origin is revised to be closer to his Pre-Flashpoint one, albeit with some differences and a changed motive:
- Rather than being a former fan of the Flash whose idolism of Barry turned into hatred after Barry defeated him and turned him in for engineering threats to people, Thawne remains an obsessive fan who sought to rehabilitate himself after that and only became the Reverse-Flash after later coming to believe that only by tormenting Barry will he spend time with him.
- Instead of already being the Flash Museum professor when he first managed to tap into the Speed Force, he became a professor and the Flash Museum curator as part of his rehabilitation.
- Rather than his parents dying when he was an adult, they died when he was a child.
- Instead of wanting to kill Barry, Thawne seeks to ruin Barry's life until he starts to treat him specially and see him as his true friend.
- Thawne's electrokinesis allows him to glow his eyes red, with his sclera turned black.
- Thawne had grey hair in the New 52 (similar to when New Earth Thawne was reintroduced), while DC Rebirth changes the color to red (the character's original hair colour).
- In spite of the character's Rebirth revision, Thawne's New 52 history is shown to have still existed in-contunity, to some extent, and hasn't been entirely retconned. This discrepancy has yet to be explained.
- 60 Appearances of Eobard Thawne (Prime Earth)
- 38 Images featuring Eobard Thawne (Prime Earth)
- 13 Quotations by or about Eobard Thawne (Prime Earth)
- Character Gallery: Eobard Thawne (Prime Earth)
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 The Flash (Volume 5) #21
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 The Flash (Volume 5) #25
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 The Flash (Volume 5) #27
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 The Flash (Volume 4) #47
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 The Flash Annual (Volume 4) #4
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 4) #40
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 4) #41
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 4) #42
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 4) #43
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 10.2 The Flash (Volume 4) #44
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 11.2 The Flash (Volume 4) #45
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 The Flash (Volume 4) #46
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 The Flash (Volume 5) #7
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 14.2 14.3 14.4 14.5 The Flash #754
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 15.6 The Flash (Volume 5) #23
- ↑ 16.0 16.1 The Flash (Volume 5) #88
- ↑ 17.0 17.1 The Flash Annual (Volume 5) #1
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 18.2 The Flash: Rebirth (Volume 2) #1
- ↑ 19.0 19.1 19.2 19.3 19.4 19.5 The Flash #755
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 5) #9
- ↑ Deathstroke (Volume 4) #24
- ↑ 22.0 22.1 Deathstroke (Volume 4) #25
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 The Flash (Volume 5) #19
- ↑ 24.0 24.1 24.2 24.3 24.4 24.5 24.6 24.7 24.8 24.9 Batman (Volume 3) #21
- ↑ 25.0 25.1 Batman (Volume 3) #84
- ↑ 26.0 26.1 26.2 Batman (Volume 3) #22
- ↑ 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 The Flash (Volume 5) #24
- ↑ 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 The Flash (Volume 5) #26
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 5) #46
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 5) #47
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 5) #48
- ↑ The Flash (Volume 5) #81
- ↑ 33.0 33.1 33.2 The Flash #753
- ↑ The Flash #750
- ↑ 35.0 35.1 35.2 35.3 The Flash (Volume 5) #22
- ↑ 36.0 36.1 36.2 The Flash (Volume 3) #8
- ↑ 37.0 37.1 Flashpoint: Reverse Flash #1
|Flash Family member|
This character is or was an incarnation of or an ally of The Flash, and a member of the Flash Family of speedsters. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the "Flash Family members" category.
Secret Society of Super-Villains member