Thursday, October 9, 2014

THE FLASH Casts Andy Mientus as Pied Piper

Flash news...Flash news EVERYWHERE...

TVLine is reporting that the CW series The Flash has cast Andy Mientus as Hartley Rathaway, better known to DC Comics fans as the Pied Piper, one of the Rogues who join forces to plague the Fastest Man Alive.

The Pied Piper will make his debut in Episodes 11 and 12 and will be openly gay, as he is depicted in Flash comics.  Piper is described in the article as "One of DC’s original Rogues, Hartley is a bona fide genius who used to work at S.T.A.R. Labs until a falling out with his mentor, Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh).  The particle accelerator robbed Hartley of his hearing, but inspired him to create a series of sonic weapons that he uses in an effort to punish Wells by destroying his new protege: The Flash."

The 27-year-old actor, who is openly bisexual, is best known as Kyle Bishop on the NBC series Smash and is slated to appear as a regular on the ABC Family series Chasing Life. 

Created in 1959 by John Broome and Carmine Infantino, the Pied Piper first appeared in The Flash (vol.1) #106 as Hartley Rathaway, who was born deaf but was cured as a result of researched funded by his wealthy father.  He became obsessed with sound and experimented with sonic technology, eventually inventing a technique of hypnotism through music and a way to cause deadly vibrations.  Growing bored of his lifestyle, he turned to crime as the Pied Piper and frequently clashed with Barry Allen, the second Flash.

In 1991, William Messner-Loebs and Greg LaRocque had Piper come out as gay in The Flash (vol.2) #53.  Having reformed as a supervillain, Piper became friends with Wally West, the third Flash, and revealed his sexual preference during an opening sequence in the issue where Wally asks Piper if he's heard rumors that The Joker is gay.  Wally reacts to the news awkwardly at first, but quickly adjusts and remains good friends with Piper.

In the current New 52 continuity, Hartley is now the conductor of Central City's orchestra and is described as a "reformed vigilante."  He is dating Director David Singh, Barry Allen's superior at the Central City Police Department Crime Lab, and later assists the Flash and former Rogue teammate Captain Cold against the newly united Rogues.

This will be the character's first depiction in live-action, although a female version of the character was rumored to be planned for a second season of the 1990-91 Flash TV series that never happened.  He was seen in the Justice League Unlimited animated series episode "Flash and Substance" in a bar where the Rogues hang out.

The Flash airs Tuesday nights on The CW at 8:00 p.m. EST.

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