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GH writes...

1. When did Wally and Artemis started to have feelings for each other?
2. When did they realised it?

An Ask Greg Helper responds...

Greg Weisman says:

"To begin with, I think you need to go back to Artemis' introduction in 'Infiltrator'. She saw a cute boy enter and that made her insecure, so she cracked a joke. He reacted VERY badly to being embarrassed, and that put them at odds, but I think that both were attracted to each other from moment one. We tried to show that without telling it - or at least without being on the head about telling it.

Then they challenged each other. Not just her challenging him, but him challenging her. And I think she came to admire his intellect - even when it was misdirected, as in 'Denial'. There has to be a reason that she kept at him. If he was of no interest to her, why would she bother? Then you have Kent Nelson. Both Wally and Artemis HEARD what Kent had to say, and it wasn't lost on them. But they didn't want to cop to it, because both felt the other didn't like him or her. So that insecurity pushed them both further into denial.

Then you have 'Bereft'. Here, as I've discussed before, they meet again for the first time without the negative first impression. They genuinely like each other, trust each other and are attracted to each other. When their memories return, so do their insecurities - neither will risk being the first to admit they like the other. But it's not like they forgot that (positive) time spent together. And it's not like their deaf to Robin's 'Get a room' line either.

And so on. Artemis saved the day in 'Homefront'. But she couldn't have done it if Wally hadn't provided the science. (And given her interest in science, revealed in "Denial", I think that would mean something to her.)

Plus, let's not forget the double-whammy of 'Failsafe' and 'Disordered'. Here we reveal just how intensely Wally feels for Artemis, and just how much interest each has in the other. The trick is neither is prepared to take a risk. Rejection from Superboy (such as it was) is nothing compared to the fear Artemis has over being rejected by Wally.

Wally meanwhile is afraid to admit his strong feelings for Artemis, so maintains focus on the safer Miss Martian. Artemis does the same toward Superboy. Both then have to be disabused of the notion that their crushes are viable. I tend to think that deep down, the revelation about Conner and M'gann's relationship was less of a shock to each then it seemed. They didn't want to admit to themselves what they were probably sensing deep down. One reason for Artemis' extreme reaction to the knowledge, I think, is that she was trying SO hard to think that Superboy was a possibility BECAUSE Wally clearly seemed NOT to be, and so she wanted to have something she could use to push Wally out of her mind.

So in 'Coldhearted', Wally learns some big lessons. Miss Martian is out of the picture - and that helps clear his mind. But mostly, he matures solidly in the episode. Now he's ready to behave differently. And in 'Insecurity', he's willing to take a risk. And Artemis rewards that risk taken, by meeting him part way. But she has other bigger insecurities in the way, and they REALLY get in the way, so that by the time we get to the beginning of 'Usual Suspects' - they're still at odds. But one of the reason they are SO at odds, is because for them, the stakes seem very high.

So when the truth finally comes out, it's a HUGE relief. She sees that he accepts her. He doesn't even have to say it. She can see that he does. And he sees that the reason she's been a pain have little to do with him. The deck is cleared.

Then they partner up in 'Auld Acquaintance', and they're a good team. All of which leads really easily into the kiss on New Year's Eve. (Another excuse to do something that they otherwise might have been scared about.)

From there, it's fairly clear sailing. I'm not saying there weren't any ups and downs during the five year gap, because there were. But they both know they have a good thing now. And they stick with it.

The irony is that a lot of fans seemed to think this was about opposites attracting. But we never saw it that way. In fact, we saw it as quite the reverse. Artemis and Kid Flash had so MUCH in common, it was nearly impossible for them to get together. But once they did, it felt very right."

[Response recorded on August 29, 2012.]

Response recorded on September 30, 2012