The Flash: “The Sound and the Fury” Season 1 Episode 11 Review

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“The Sound and the Fury” featured a fun mix of villains, introducing the Pied Piper while begging us to ask more questions about the obviously evil Dr. Wells.

First, I have to compliment the writers for doing something live-action comic book adaptations have seemingly been avoiding: including an LGBT character. The current state of TV has brought a plethora of gay characters to the small screen. Even Arrow‘s Sara Lance and Nyssa al Ghul helped create a more diverse landscape. Now The Flash has joined in by tweaking Pied Piper’s backstory to make him gay. It has little to do with the character overall, aside from the fact that his parents disowned him after coming out. But in an age where gay characters are portrayed almost exclusively as positive influences on other characters’ lives, “The Sound and the Fury” was progressive in that it showed a gay character as a villain, because just like straight people, there are morally questionable LGBT people. They’re not all your sassy best friend.

Anyway, Pied Piper’s confrontations with the Flash were fun. His powers were visually exciting, particularly in the climax, and he proved to be a real challenge for the Scarlet Speedster.

But the best thing about the character was his connection to Dr. Wells. Through flashbacks we see his alter ego, Hartley Rathaway, back when he used to work at S.T.A.R. Labs. He apparently figured out that the particle accelerator had the potential to explode and even told Wells, who ignored and fired him.

When Hartley starts spouting about Wells’ secrets to his team in the present, he has to come clean. Caitlin and Cisco are obviously startled, and even Barry questions his faith in his mentor.

But Wells makes up for it by stopping Pied Piper from afar in the climax, saving Barry’s life. He’s back in his team’s good graces, which is a stark reminder that if Wells continues his path to becoming Reverse-Flash, the entire dynamic of the series could change by the start of season two. We’ll see.

Overall, “The Sound and the Fury” was a very fun episode that had an interesting new villain challenging another villain on the rise. Barry got in the middle and maintained the status quo, but as we hit the halfway point of the season, we’ll see how long that lasts. Grade: B+

Some Other Thought Bubbles:

– This was the first time we saw Wells full-on using super speed. How his identity as Reverse-Flash logistically works out will be fascinating to watch.

– When will Barry get the hint?! I mean, just look at Wells’ home. No one who is not a super villain would EVER live there.

– Iris is a reporter now, making her effectively Lois Lane.

– “Being scooped up by a guy cut in head-to-toe leather is a long-time fantasy of mine, so thanks.”


By Matt Dougherty

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