The Gifted Season 1 Episodes 12 & 13: eXtraction & X-roads Recap

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The Gifted ends its first season with a splashy two part finale which forces the entire cast to reevaluate their beliefs. Except for Campbell. His beliefs are firmly set in stone, so the finale has other challenges in store for him, like proving just how evil he is. The Mutant Underground faces its worst crisis yet, and it’s not clear that the members have the will to keep the organization going after so many setbacks. The Frost Sisters continue to whisper in the ears of anyone who’ll listen, changing the course of the mutants’ lives forever. The good news is that The Gifted is already renewed for season 2, so we know that the mutants will be back next fall (ish) to continue the fight.

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Let me say first, for anyone watching these later, that I’m making an educated guess as to where the episode break is. Be careful as you approach that point in the recap if you want to be sure to avoid spoilers! (Pretty sure it ends on the cliffhanger, but I’ve been wrong before.)

Four years ago, Dr Campbell’s brother was dying of cystic fibrosis, an incurable genetic respiratory disease. He’d already outlived his expected lifespan, and watching him slowly fade away was torture for Campbell. Campbell doesn’t want to leave his brother alone for the day, but his brother sends him to the presentation he has scheduled.

Campbell gives a lecture on genetic mutations vs taking control of your own destiny. He says that as a scientist he’s learned that Mother Nature has no special affection for Homo sapiens as a species. We only out lasted the Neanderthals because we out competed them, despite the Neanderthals being better adapted to the environment in some ways. Now mutants born with the X gene are threatening the survival of Homo sapiens again. It’s time for mankind to stand together as a species to wipe out this threat to our survival.

John, Lorna, Clarice and Marcos meet with the Frost Sisters to negotiate cooperating to eliminate Campbell. Marcos is compelled to make sure that everyone knows he doesn’t like the Frosts, as if they might have forgotten in the last ten minutes.

Esme says that the Hound program is currently operating secretly, but her sources tell her that Campbell is looking to take it national. If they’re going to kill the program, it has to be now. Campbell is attending the Humanity Today Summit in Nashville tomorrow. Clarice questions the name of the organization.

Esme: I guess they thought it sounded better than “Kill the Muties.”

Every important figure in the antimutant movement will be at the summit: politicians, business leaders, and Purifiers. Even though security will be intense, they’re out of time and need to grab Campbell, then use him to end the program.

Clarice balks at the idea of kidnapping Campbell. 🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️ OMG, what part of WAR does she not understand?? He SHOT Dreamer right in front of her as leverage over the Strucker kids! I’m clearly way too much of an anarchist to live in normal TV show society, since I was thinking the summit would be a good place to set off a few bombs. Where’s the Black Widow or Winter Soldier when you need them? Better yet, they should have Andy and Lauren take down the whole building and everyone in it.

Esme sweetly asks if the Underground knows about Clarice’s old friends? Because she and her sisters do. But best not to get bogged down in the past, or pesky details, when there’s work to do. Clarice looks uncomfortable. Score one for Esme. Next she needs to ask Marcos how his ex-girlfriend is doing.

The Struckers are settling back in at HQ after their trip to get the way station destroyed. John stops by to let them know that the big four are going to Charlotte to kidnap Campbell. John asks if Reed has been able to decipher his father’s research at all, but Reed hasn’t had any luck, because he’s not a scientist. Nobody suggests that Caitlin, who’s at least taken some related classes, look the research over.

Clarice pulls John aside to explain that she ran with some members of the Brotherhood for a while when she was going through hard times, but she technically never joined them. When Clarice came to HQ, Sage only asked about her arrests, and she was never arrested with the Brotherhood. John is angry that she didn’t come clean anyway, but Clarice needed a home and didn’t want to be rejected. You know, the way he’s rejecting her now, saying that he thought she was “one of us,” but obviously she isn’t.

LOL. Marcos worked for the mob as an enforcer; Lorna is Magneto’s daughter and mentally unstable; Johnny’s best friend Pulse got dozens of mutants killed as a hound after Johnny and Marcos left him for dead; Reed spent his career prosecuting mutants, sending some off to Campbell’s lab. If we’re going to get all judgey, I’d say that Clarice’s record makes her too good for them.

Campbell checks in with the Trask employee that he tasked with organizing Otto Strucker’s research. He’s discovered that important parts of the research notes are missing. Campbell angrily demands that the employee find them.

Lorna and Marcos argue, again, about working with the Frosts. He’s still pouty, but he agrees to take part in the mission for her.

Andy rereads the book about the Fenris, who he’s become obsessed with. Lauren is concerned, because Andy thinks that the Von Struckers were working to help mutants, while she thinks they were just destructive maniacs. He points out that their information sources were written by the Fenris’ enemies. Andy says that the Fenris were trying to create a safe place for mutants, just like the Underground. Lauren says that the two are nothing alike.

Fade, the barkeep/van driver who can throw an invisibility cloak, gives Caitlin a hard time when he sees that the Struckers are back.

Sage and Reed are researching leads on his father. They discover that his mother is about to be picked up by Sentinel Services, and race over to get her first.

Esme brings the team to her upscale safe house, which Clarice declares boozhee. Esme offers to add some mold and smash holes in the floor if it will make the team feel more at home.

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Between the Frost Sisters’ cute little matching spy outfits for every occasion and their tart little comebacks, delivered as a group, they are my new favorite character.

Once inside, Esme gets in a little flirting with Johnny, and a couple of digs at the way the Xmen told the Underground to continue the fight, then abandoned them with nothing, whereas the Brotherhood has set up the Hellfire Club with more than adequate financial resources.

She shows Lorna to her room and pushes Lorna to talk until Lorna loses control and smashes the room’s metal bed frame. Esme is impressed with Lorna’s growing power.

The Struckers drive to Grandma Strucker’s workplace to pick her up before Sentinel Services can. Instead of telling her to grab her purse, that they’ll explain in the car, and then whisking her out the door, they stop to explain what’s going on and convince her to go with them while still in her office. She, of course, is so dedicated to her insurance agency job and so disbelieving that this could happen to her family, that she refuses to go. Blah, blah, blah, you have to go, I can’t go, what do you know about dad, he was a deadbeat, no, he was a mutant, he was a mutant dead beat, whatever mom, get in the car before we throw you in, blah blah, blah.

Andy and Lauren bicker outside in full sight, then Andy uses his powers in the most mild way possible to stop the Sentinel Services agents who find them. Lauren attacks Andy for attacking their enemy, because Marcos has infected her with too-good-and-pure-to-fight-itis.

Mom and Dad get Grandma to the car just in time, and they make their get away. They stop at a gas station to ditch the car, where Grandma announces that though she’s not an idiot, she’s not going with them. She has enough cash to get to a friend who lives in the country near Boca Raton, so that’s where she’s going. Since Grandma is Sharon Gless, it’s impossible to stay mad at her when she gives the kids her patented heartwarming twinkly goodbye hugs and smiles.

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Before she leaves, Grandma tells Reed to check out Otto’s coresearcher, Madeleine Risman.

The team waylay a rich benefactor of the antimutant cause who will be their way into the Humanity Today summit. Marcos is still pouting and Clarice is still angry. Johnny is trying to keep the peace. Lorna gets to throw giant kitchen knives with her powers, so she’s happy. She’s got a hot black leather leg holster to store them in when she’s not throwing them, no doubt a gift from the Frosts, whose boots indicate that they appreciate a good accessory.

The Frosts force the benefactor, Franklin Bennett, to call the summit and add the team to his security detail. That’s their way in.

At the summit, Campbell works his contact, Senator Montez, the Purifier sympathizer whose campaign Esme infiltrated. The Senator is intrigued by the Hound program, but his top aide feels that it’s too controversial to back publicly.

We spend an inordinate amount of time watching the mutants get dressed in their suits and dress shirts so that they can play security detail. Johnny’s excited by the professionalism of the operation. They have his shirt size! Marcos is still pouting. In case you were wondering.

Lorna muses that dress shirts are a little too minimal as disguises for them, between her hair, Clarice’s eyes, and the fact that three of them are the same person. She tells Clarice that Esme told her about her birth father. Clarice has a lot of relatives with the X gene. She learned a long time ago that it doesn’t have to mean anything for her own life.

Esme finishes up with Bennett, then uses her telepathy to make him stop breathing for a minute, as punishment for threatening her. Clarice comes in and forces her to stop.

Senator Montez’ introduction to the summit audience includes a children’s choir singing patriotic songs. At least the mutant threat has brought humans together to the point that a guy with the last name of Montez can be considered an Amurican by his fellow racists.

Campbell sits in the front row for the speech.

Montez wants the mutant haters’ great ideas to help bring the country back. The mutants are hiding behind the constitution, but the constitution is a human document, written by humans, for humans.

Montez: “It’s time to stop being politically correct. Time to stop coddling our enemies and offering our friends empty promises. Which is why I will shortly introduce new legislation to defeat the mutants who are trying to destroy our way of life. This bill will help fund next generation programs to wipe out our enemies wherever they hide, whatever their powers, because we are done being afraid, we are done living under seige. It is time for humanity to prevail.”

Make no mistake, when he says wipe out, he’s talking about genocide. It’s kill or be killed for the mutants when they’re under attack.

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Johnny tells Clarice that when she stopped the Frosts from torturing Bennett, he realized that her past doesn’t matter. She’s one of them. They kiss, then she portals them into the summit. Wow, Dreamer’s not even cold in her empty grave.

Sage tells Reed that Trask is interviewing everyone his father’s ever met. She asks if they got any helpful information from Grandma. Reed gives her the name of the researcher Otto worked with, Madeleine Risman. Sage begins to research her.

Caitlin confronts Andy and Lauren, who have another argument in front of her. He’s the only one who’s proud to be a Von Strucker.

Once Montez is done with his speech, Clarice, John and Marcos get into position. Lorna shorts out all of the cell phones. John uses his super hearing for surveillance to warn them about nearby security, then they ambush Campbell as he steps out of the elevator. They don’t expect that he’ll have his pet Hound, and no one tries to take the Hound out, so the Hound slows them down while they fight. Marcos in particular is incapacitated, and Clarice just stands there.

The next time the elevator doors open, it’s filled with the children’s choir. Campbell grabs a gun from the floor and one of the children. He subtly hold the gun on the girl so it won’t show up on the surveillance tape, then uses the threat to get himself and the girl onto the elevator and escape.

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More security guards come around the corner, guns blazing. Marcos dives onto the floor and around a different corner, while Johnny shields Clarice with his body. Marcos calls for Clarice to portal them out.

I’ve gotta say, right now, Campbell’s the one who looks like his species deserves to survive. Maybe he and the Frosts should go head to heads in a cage match to decide which species wins, because it sure looks like the Xmen chose wrong. Johnny’s the only one who even bothered to try to nab Campbell. His military training comes in handy in a crisis.

X-roads

Four years ago, Lorna was a patient at the Lakeview Psychiatric Hospital, having been sentenced to psychiatric care for her bipolar disorder instead of imprisoned for her part in a violent Purifier counter protest. The judge had a sister with bipolar disorder and took pity on her. We see her playing with Magneto’s medallion, when a nurse enters to tell her she has a visitor.

Lorna’s visitor, Evangeline, is a lawyer and a mutant, probably Evangeline Whedon, a shapeshifter from the comics who turns into a red dragon. She tells Lorna that she knows that Lorna was responsible for six antimutant protesters “accidentally” falling off an overpass. That gets Lorna’s attention. Evangeline says that she knows a lot about Lorna, and that they need fighters like her, now that the world is becoming so difficult for mutants.

Evangeline asks if Lorna has heard of the Xmen. Lorna says, “Aren’t they an urban legend now? World went to hell and poof, they’re gone.” Evangeline says that, “They left something behind. A network, to help mutants in trouble. It needs leaders.” Lorna questions why the Xmen would choose someone who’s in a mental hospital. Evangeline tells her that maybe the Xmen see something inside her that she can’t see yet. Everyone has demons inside them. “It’s what you do with them that matters.”

As she says that, Evangeline’s hand turns red and scaly, with long black claws.

The Xmen chose Lorna knowing full well that she was prone to violence and killing, and that’s why they chose her. They wanted a confident fighter. That’s important to remember going forward, as the people around her tell her that’s not what the Xmen wanted. Her Xwoman recruiter told her point blank that was why they wanted her.

In the present day, Lorna and Esme (they’re all Esme, okay?) wait by the car for Marcos, Clarice and John to bring Campbell out of the summit. Esme is growing impatient. The three mutants jump through a portal without Campbell, explaining that they couldn’t get him because he shielded himself with kids.

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Esme is appalled at their lack of dedication to the mission. She gets slightly hysterical, refusing to leave without Campbell, even though Sentinel Services agents are arriving by the carload. She says she doesn’t care if there was a kid in the way, mutants will die if they don’t shut down the Hound program. Esme is hardcore.

They force her into the car and escape, with Sentinel Services in pursuit. Lorna stands up in the sunroof and knocks down telephone poles to block the pursuers.

Campbell, ever the opportunist, grabs Montez and informs him of the kidnapping attempt. He suggests that they fly to DC to lock in funding for the antimutant bill while the anger over the attack is still fresh. They’ll be able to run right over the opposition states that still believe in mutants rights.

Shatter informs the Struckers that the mission to get Campbell failed, and an argument breaks out. Andy wants to go to Charlotte to help, but the others don’t think they could get there in time and think it’s more important that they protect HQ. Andy is sick of waiting around and being treated like a child while the humans keep attacking. Reed and Caitlin take offense at being lumped in with their antimutant enemies.

Jace joins the investigation into Andy’s “attack” on the agents at Grandma Strucker’s office. He has a new pair of tracker hounds from Campbell. One is clairvoyant, the other detects organic molecules. He sets them lose on the Struckers’ trail.

Esme is still yelling at Marcos when they get back to the safehouse. Lorna doesn’t do anything to stop her. They need to figure out where Campbell is so that they can finish the mission.

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As soon as they get inside, Marcos suggests that he and Lorna leave, and take another shot at Campbell on their own terms, when the fervor has died down. Lorna doesn’t think it will die down. She’s never seen so many people filled with so much hate against them, but they were all smiling. It’s got her spooked. She thinks they have to do something to stop those people.

Marcos says that using violence will only make things worse, proving that he didn’t hear a word Lorna or anyone at the summit said. It doesn’t get worse than genocide. On top of that, he suggests that Lorna is only upset because she’s having a bipolar episode. I suspect that seals his fate for what comes at the end of the episode, because, wow, you don’t devalue your partner’s feelings and opinions when you disagree with them by suggesting their opinions are caused by mental illness. Not okay.

Lorna explains that she thought that if they had a child, it would have an easier life than them, because they’d build a better world for it. Marcos, who is looking like the one who’s mentally ill at this point, says that they are building a better world, it’s just going to take time and faith. (Where is this world? In heaven?) Lorna says she’s always loved that about him, that he has faith.

They hug, and Marcos looks confused for a moment. Lorna looks sad. I think she knows that she’s saying goodbye.

Andy packs up his stuff and goes to sleep with the other teenagers in a different part of HQ. This is seen as a serious rebellion and betrayal by his family, even though he explains that up until a month ago, he could close the door to his room and have some space. Caitlin in particular won’t shut up until he walks away from her.

Lauren follows Andy up to his new space so that they can argue again. They agree that being captured by the lab and watching Sonja die changed everything, but it’s made Lauren afraid to fight, and Andy even more angry than he was before. Lauren wants to be sure that everything she does is positive and hates the Fenris abilities. Andy thinks they should use whatever they’ve got for protection, even if the powers are destructive.

That’s not a sexist turn of events at all. 🤦🏻‍♀️

Director Wolcott tells Jace about the attack on Campbell. He wants Jace to go after mutants so that Campbell can use the captures to promote the Hound program in Washington.

Esme approaches Lorna alone and says she knows what Lorna is thinking. The others can’t see how serious the situation really is, but hard choices need to be made. Campbell needs to be eliminated. As a telepath, she’s seen that Lorna’s father gave her the medallion on her 13th birthday, and wanted her to be proud of who she really is. It’s clear what needs to be done.

Esme may have given Lorna a tiny push in a certain direction here, but we’ve seen Lorna arguing for more and decisive action for a while now. When we met her she turned around and attacked the SS agents who were going after Marcos. Lorna is action oriented and moves quickly. She’s independent, and has strong opinions. And she knows that the Xmen recruited her directly because she’s a fighter. She doesn’t need to listen to anyone else’s manipulative BS about what the Xmen wanted. I think she’s known for a while that it was going to come down to her taking control and acting decisively, whether John and Marcos liked it or not, especially after her best friend Sonja was murdered.

The tracker hounds lead Jace to an area that’s closed because of contamination. Jace knows immediately that it’s where the Underground HQ is. He calls and gets support from Wolcott for the operation. The lookout mutant sees them in the distance, and uses his powers to send a wave of terror through them. Jace recognizes it for what it is and talks his agents through it.

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The Underground prepares to evacuate. Shatter sounds the alarm, while Sage collects communications devices to burn. Caitlin recruits Fade to drive a van load of little kids out as quickly as possible. He balks at taking orders from her, but he knows she’s right. Andy and Lauren agree to a temporary truce so that they can defend HQ.

Marcos and John realize that Lorna and two of the Frost sisters have left the safe house. They confront the third sister, who explains that Campbell and the Senator filed a flight plan for Washington. They leave in twenty minutes. When John, Clarice and Marcos realize that Lorna intends to bring the plane down and kill everyone on it, they go ballistic. John yells that killing people goes against everything they stand for and will make things worse for mutants everywhere. Esme replies that things are already worse, and he knows it. Marcos yells at her to shut up. They are going to go get Lorna, and if he’s sees her eyes turn blue, he’ll use his powers on her. His hands glow threateningly.

Fade gets the van of kids out just in time, but almost everyone else is trapped inside. They barricade off the front door, then decide to dig a tunnel out through the vault into the woods. Caitlin leads the strong mutants through tunnel digging, while Reed organizes the kids Lorna was training in combat to defend the bank until the tunnel is ready.

IMDB says that Mark the Hulking Mutant pounds the foundation and bedrock until it breaks and can be removed. Shatter has to come in at one point and use his powers to crystalize and shatter rock that’s too hard for Mark the Hulking Mutant to break up. The mutants form a line to pass the stones that Mark removes away from the tunnel. It doesn’t take long before they reach the outdoors.

Meanwhile Sentinel Services begins their attack with a traditional strike team, just for jollies. Reed has a gun, a few other teenage mutants have various powers, and Andy and Lauren use their powers separately. They drive the strike team back during the first assault.

Next Jace calls in the two teams of paired mutants, the destroyers and the trackers. He instructs his people that they aren’t taking prisoners. The Underground mutants and friends are on their way out the tunnel into the woods as the destroyers are breaking down the barricade. Does this make Andy Gavroche? (Les Mis humor)

In order to make sure that everyone gets out and they aren’t followed, Andy and Lauren volunteer to stay behind and bring down the building with the Fenris power, killing the paired mutants at the same time. They disintegrate the building, and everyone else inside or too close dies, but they walk out unscathed.

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They really should find a way to practice with the Fenris powers, to find out if there’s any sort of volume dial.

All of the mutants from HQ make their way safely to the Nashville way station, a building owned by J Kirby, the guy who’s not Stan Lee.

Marcos, Clarice and John argue amongst themselves on the drive to the airport. John asks if Lorna could be having a manic episode. Claice jumps in to say no way. She’s had friends with bipolar disorder. Assassination plots are not one of the symptoms. Thank you, Clarice. Lorna is allowed to disagree with you and act on it, boys. It doesn’t make her crazy.

On the plane, Montez asks Campbell how he got into the work he does. Campbell explains that his brother had CF, a genetic illness. Whether it’s one person or the entire species, it’s his calling to end human suffering. He tries to make genocide sound very noble.

Lorna stands just outside the airport fence, watching the plane and waiting for it to take off. Her friends arrive and try to talk her out of bringing the plane down. Lorna moves a spiral of barbed wire in between them, so they can’t interfere with her. Marcos reminds her, again, that she’ll be killing a few innocent people. (It’s a private plane. Anyone on it works for a racist senator, except possibly the flight crew.) Lorna says that innocent people are dying on their side to.

John says that Lorna’s not a killer, and she just looks at him. Then he brings out that old favorite, this isn’t why the Xmen chose us. Lorna tells him that the Xmen made a mistake. This is who she is. Marcos tells her that he just cares about his family. Lorna responds that she’s cares about the family, to, that’s why she has to do this. Marcos goes all pathetic, saying this will change EVERYTHING.

Marcos: Our kid will have to live in this world.

Lorna: It’s time to make a new world.

She turns around as the plane takes off and uses her powers to rip the engines off in midair. There are spectacular fireballs all over the place, and giant crashes. The impact throws John, Marcos and Clarice to the ground, leaving them stunned. By the time they get up, Lorna is gone.

They make their way to the Nashville way station. Everyone is trying to regroup, and process what happened.

The Struckers pat themselves on the back for saving everyone. All of the regulars who are in the building hug.

Director Wolcott calls Jace in for debriefing and scapegoating. He claims to have known absolutely nothing about the operation while it was in progress, and wishes Jace hadn’t mishandled it so badly. He tries to blame every bad thing that’s happened with mutants on Jace. Jace becomes outraged, turns in his badge, and storms out of the room.

The Underground tries to figure out how to go on. Marcos is ready to rebuild. Sage and Clarice don’t see how they can rebuild when they have nothing left. Fade still resents the Struckers.  Marcos brings up the Xmen again, saying they knew it would take struggle and sacrifice.

Lorna interrupts, entering the room with one of the Esmes. Lorna’s all cleaned up and dressed up in a studded leather jacket and a blouse with a plunging neckline. She’s supposedly a villain now, so she’s sexy and in leather. Not stereotypical at all.

Lorna tells Marcos that there’s nothing noble about struggle, and sacrifice is just a pretty name for losing.

Marcos: Lorna, What are you doing?

Lorna: I’m telling them the truth. The Mutant Underground is dying. That world, where we don’t have to hide, that we’ve always talked about? I want to build that, for all of us, for my baby.

Marcos: That baby is ours. And this is where your family is. Lorna, you know I will do anything for you, but I can’t help you do this. (Verging on patriarchal there, Marcos.)

Esme: No one’s asking for your help. The people we’re here for? They know who they are.

Marcos: What the hell does that mean?

Fade, Mark the Hulking Mutant, Sage, and Andy get up and join Lorna and Esme.

The Struckers try to stop Andy from leaving. Caitlin and Reed pull the parent card with Esme and with Andy, but Andy is firm that he’s making this decision by himself. Reed is visibly shocked when Andy tells him that he’s not asking for permission.

Lauren: Andy, when we were kids and played Xmen, we did that because they were heroes. Because they saved everyone. Don’t leave me.

Andy: The Xmen are gone. We’re not little kids any more.

Reed tries to grab Andy to stop him from leaving. Andy brushes him off, and accidentally uses his powers. He apologizes, but tells them not to try to stop him. He doesn’t want to hurt anyone. The Hellfire Club leaves.

The Mutant Resistance Will Return.

 


 

This show has come into its own in the last few episodes. With Campbell’s unabashed but messianic evil unleashed and the Frost Sisters livening up the endless misery of the mutants, it’s become much more fun and interesting. The show needs the entire Hellfire Club to become a strong presence to counteract the burdensome goodness of the Underground.

The way the season ended left some good openings for continuing storylines, with the mutants separated into three Factions: the Hounds, the Hellfire Club, and the Underground. The humans are also split into factions: mutant allies, the Purifiers and other private sector antimutant groups, and Sentinel Services plus the rest of the antimutant government.

One of the big questions for next season will be finding out who ends up in which pile for the long term, and which factions can ultimately manage to work together. Clarice, in particular, seems like she could be swayed to join the Hellfire Club eventually. She’s agreed with their positions more than once. Jace is a good man underneath his anger, who wouldn’t believe in genocide if his daughter and partner hadn’t been killed. If he ever surfaces from his blind rage again, he could switch sides. Johnny is a soldier who understands that war requires doing things you wouldn’t normally consider. He’s already indicated his willingness to cooperate with the Hellfire Club. Lauren and Andy will eventually realize that they neeed to find a way to compromise and work together to develop the Fenris powers.

Hopefully next season’s storylines will allow all of the mutants to shine again, rather than holding some back as contrasts and foils for the others. Dreamer’s role as peacemaker is sorely missed already. There’s a slight chance that she’ll turn out to be alive, since Campbell kept her body and the mutants buried an empty casket. It’s unlike him to waste a mutant like that.

The Underground needs to get over its inability to act decisively. Spending so much of the season with Marcos, Caitlin and Reed trying to convince all of the powerful mutants not to use their powers was the wrong choice for the show and the mutants. It dragged both down. I don’t think the Xmen chose them to sit around and cry into their beers.

I never need to hear someone’s opinion about why the Xmen chose them again. Whatever the reasoning was, the Xmen pointed at a couple of people and bugged out. As Esme said, it doesn’t seem to be any great honor to be their favorites. Who cares what they thought?

There’s a war on. The Underground mutants need to grow up and accept that fighting it means they will cause casualties in order to survive. They have the right to fight to survive, just as much as the humans do. Hiding until they’re found and killed won’t save them, and is boring and depressing. Montez and Jace made it clear that mutants are going to be killed from now on, not taken prisoner. Unless they’re going to be turned into Hounds, a fate worse than death. There’s no way the Hound program will be shut down now.

The Struckers need to learn how to cover their tracks or stay the heck away from the new HQ. The Strucker-hating mutants had a point. They brought most of the trouble with them, one way or another.

The actors are all great, and the characters started out with potential, but too many got lost in personal grief or romantic woes. The audience and the mutants need to see that Johnny, Clarice and Marcos are capable of setting aside their personal problems and acting with confidence and strength.

Lorna is the only one of the four mutant leaders who feels like a dynamic, exciting character any more. She’s complex, not afraid to use her powers, and speaks her mind. The other three are so worried about whether or not someone is good enough to join their club, even each other, and busy trying not to get their hands dirty, that they started to bring down every scene they were in.

The same thing happened between Lauren and Andy, no doubt to facilitate the split between them. Lauren started the season as the girl who was an expert at using her powers because she’d practiced them secretly for years, and didn’t hesitate to use them to save Andy. Now she doesn’t want to use them for anything, even when Sentinel Services is standing in front of them.

Reed and Caitlin need to either accept that this is a war and the young mutants are part of it, or shut up. Both improved significantly in the finale, but I have to agree with Fade. Why are the human suburbanites automatically in charge of a mutant outpost? The mutants were handling things fine before they arrived. Shouldn’t Shatter and Sage take over when the big four are out on missions?

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There is talk of the Frost Sisters becoming series regulars for season 2, and I’m all for it. They’re best thing to happen to this show since Campbell arrived to be the creepy villain. Skyler Samuels and her doubles (triples?) knock it out of the park every week.

In an interview with TVLine, Matt Nix also mentions the Purifiers and Otto Strucker’s research partner Madeleine Risman as potential villains next season. That gives us a hint as to where Jace Turner might end up in the private sector.

Nix also talks as if Campbell is dead, but within episode 13 the characters only mentioned the death of Senator Montez. Until I have 100% certain confirmation, like shots of a decapitated body, I’m keeping my mind open. He’s a hard man to kill, and he had his pet healer hound with him in Charlotte. He’s resourceful enough to have realized what was happening and to have found a parachute, ejected his seat, or discovered he’s actually a mutant and flown out of the plane on his own. Or maybe he keeps spare LMDs of himself.

The Gifted represents a refreshing family style show that contrasts with the grittier shows in the Marvel Netflix Universe, but combines well with Marvel’s other two family dramas, ABC’s Agents of SHIELD and HULU’s Runaways. All three have a brighter, more open style of cinematography (well, SHIELD is taking a break from that this season, unless you live in the Kree’s quarters), large ensembles, a crisp sense of style and humor; and likable, multigenerational casts. I love all three shows, and I hope a Disney/FOX merger would keep them all going, maybe playing up the similarities into a bit of a universe. There are already hints of that here and there, if you watch closely. Which I do. 😘

Grade for the season= B+

Marvel and Fox Are Using Plot Devices That Can Merge the Franchises Together

 

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