“You lie to yourself; tell yourself you’re a hero and it feels so good.”
While Truth or Consequences may be a place on the actual map, swapping the “or” with “and” gets to the heart of Deadly Class’s second outing, “Noise, Noise, Noise”.
Last week’s premiere was a familiar beginning; setting up the world of King’s Dominion—a school for assassins—and Marcus Lopez, the main character of the story. That first hour gave us a Cliff’s Notes version of the Dominion and its inhabitants, interspersed with snippets of motivation for each character. “Noise, Noise, Noise” expands upon that, diving deeper into the psyches of the main players while also hinting at deeper secrets amongst the group.
Despite knowing Rory’s murder was justifiable, Marcus can’t help the guilt following him throughout the day, affecting everything he does. It slowly makes its way to the surface at a party where the alcohol is flowing and the environment is a barely controlled chaos. It’s a reflection of Marcus’s own mind, where the little things begin to chip away at his careful crafted façade. It even pulls him away from an intimate moment with Saya, when he hears Willie again boasting of the murder he committed—the one they both know was by Marcus’s hand. The confrontation between the two morphs into a pseudo-origin story for Willie and we see how collateral damage from even justified violence can change someone’s life. For Willie, it was accidentally killing his own father, an action that has defined his pacifistic stance and will remain a charged secret between the two young men.
On the other side of things, we get to see a bit more from Maria and Saya. For the latter, it’s not just her hidden feelings for Marcus or the tight relationship she has with Maria that drives her. Evidently, Saya’s job to watch Marcus continues, as she eventually admits to Master Lin that Marcus wasn’t the one to burn down the boys him. Coupled with the dynamic between her and Marcus, these secrets will be something to keep an eye on as the season progresses.
As far as Maria is concerned, she has a secret of her own; taking medication to combat her possible
bipolar disorder. Combining that with her inability to get away from Chico, her abusive boyfriend, and her obvious attraction to Marcus, it seems as if she’s in the most precarious position. During the early ‘gauntlet’ the class faces where they must find the antidote to a poisonous gas lest they die, she has a chance to be rid of Chico, being that she’s the only one conscious to administer the cure to others. Instead of letting him die, she feeds him the antidote, only later to watch him murder a man in front of her and casually mention that he knows about her manipulation of Marcus to try to have him kill Chico. Knowing she’s going to be watched by her paramour even more critically, what avenues will she go to keep Chico leashed and will that open the door for more of the Marcus/Saya development?
Throughout the episode, Marcus’s voice over touches on several important aspects of not only his surroundings but life in general. He harps on the tribalism of society, so plainly represented by the cliques throughout the school. But it is his thoughts on truth, on the lies we tell ourselves and others (for their benefit) that is the primary theme in “Noise, Noise, Noise”. This becomes very clear at the end when Master Lin, knowing the truth about Rory’s murder, takes Marcus to the man’s funeral. Even in the presence of Rory’s daughter and several other attendees Marcus—though initially set to spill flowery words—takes to the words he’d espoused throughout the episode: he offers the truth, holding nothing back. That honesty, with himself and the small contingent around the casket, is that important step towards resolving the guilt of taking a life. That revelation is strengthened by Master Lin’s words to Marcus that “we face our victims” and, despite his guilty, Marcus “made the world better”. This is the philosophy of King’s Dominion, one that will continue through the season narrative as Marcus progresses through this most unusual of schools and climbs toward his lofty goal to take down the man he holds responsible for his parents’ death: President Reagan.
- With so much of the focus on Marcus and a handful of others, the burgeoning relationships between students continue to develop. Billy’s crush on Petra is dashed when he discovers her walking off with Viktor. Marcus makes a friend with Shabnam (his new roomie at the end) and hears the truth of Willie’s story. That’s not to mention the potential love triangle between Maria, Marcus, and Saya.
- For the second time, a character’s backstory is told with the use of simple animation. It’s a unique take by the show and one that seems to be the go-to for those past moments that have had to biggest impact on our characters.
- Speaking of impact, who in the blue hell is the burned face guy at the end? Caught right after sexually assaulting a goat, it seems that he has an eye out for Marcus and promises a harsh retribution for our series protagonist.
Deadly Class—“Noise, Noise, Noise”