Dedicated to reviews and news of music for film, TV and games

Saturday, March 13, 2010


The Flash
Music by Shirley Walker
La-La Land Records LLLCD 1101 (US)
Disc 1 - 77:05 mins Disc 2 - 77:09 mins

This is one of those rare occasions when the music is such that I do not feel the need to analyse it in detail. Suffice to say that if you thought La-La Land's 2 disc Batman: The Animated Series was great (and I certainly did) then you're gonna love this one too, as it's pretty much cut from the same cloth.
In fact, the live-action series The Flash predated Batman and was very much a dress rehearsal for composer Shirley Walker in terms of the music she would go on to produce for the latter, even down to having to work with a dynamic main theme composed by Danny Elfman and, like for Batman, she would quote liberally from this, especially in the many action sequences.
Sadly, The Flash never made it to UK terrestrial TV, and I've only managed to see the pilot on an old video tape I managed to acquire (the series is not widely available on DVD in the UK). Playing the title character was John Wesley Shipp, with whom I was only familiar for his later role of the title character's father in Dawson's Creek, and other familiar faces guesting throughout the show's all too short run included Jeffery Combs, Star Wars' Mark Hamill as returning villain The Trickster, and even David Cassidy.
This splendid double-disc set features music from the Pilot, plus another six episodes, and includes various versions of Elfman's theme as well. Like the Batman scores, Walker showed great versatility in her approach to the scores, with dark intrigue and much beefy action writing throughout. There is also a little romance along the way for The Flash and scientist ally Tina (Amanda Pays); a theme for The trickster which foreshadows the kind of music she would later write to accompany The Joker; and even some big band jazz. These are but a few of the many musical highlights within the more than two-and-a-half hours of music on display here.
Accompanied by the usual colourful booklet, featuring Randall D, Larson's notes on the show and its music, together with an invaluable cue-by-cue guide, this fabulous release is limited to 3000 units, so best get along to, where you can hear samples and order your copy of this must-have example of the much-missed Shirley Walker's work.


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