This Inhumans review contains spoilers.
Inhumans Episode 6
I’ve been catching up on Gifted lately, and I’ve been greatly enjoying it. Mainly because Gifted feels like it is deeply immersed in Marvel and Fox’s world of mutants. Watching Gifted got me thinking about Inhumans and how the producers and showrunners of ABC’s Marvel series just aren’t leaning into the Inhumans mythos. I mean, whenever there is a crowd of Inhumans, they just look like intense looking regular people in drab colored clothing. Whenever Gifted features a bunch of mutants, the show goes out of its way to make these extras seem fantastical while Inhumans goes out of its way to save money.
All that being said, this week’s episode of Inhumans almost felt like a classic Inhumans tale (on a budget, of course). We finally had the Royal Family reunited and kicking ass. It felt right and one wonders why the show spun its wheels for so long by having the Inhumans just wander around Hawaii. I guess it was to introduce each character’s motivations, abilities, and conflicts, but it all really felt decompressed. I mean, did Karnak’s romance with the drug smuggler really factor into the overarching war with Maximus? Nope, not at all.
But this week, seeing Karnak and Gorgon fighting side by side, seeing Medusa and Black Bolt reunited with Lockjaw and Crystal, it all just felt right. The main story this week saw Black Bolt and Medusa trying to find Crystal while Gorgon and Karnak stage a daring rescue to save Black Bolt’s big Hawaiian pal Sammy and Doctor Evan Declan. Once Declan and Sammy are rescued, they kind of just exit stage left which leaves me wondering, what the heck was the point of either one of these characters?
At least Dave and Louise were there to show the Royals that not every human is an evil piece of crap, but the doctor and the big lug really did not factor into the story at all. I have to admit, Louise really grew on me and I was disappointed that there was no story reason for Louise to accompany her new Inhuman friends back to the moon.
As for the Royals’ missions: first, we have Dave’s insecure ex-girlfriend trying her best to sabotage not only Dave and Crystal’s relationship, but also sabotage Crystal’s chances of finding her family. Did we really need Dave’s relationship follies on a show that already has way too many plot lines? Anyway, Crystal uses her lightning powers to help Medusa and Black Bolt locate her and I have to wonder, why she didn’t just do that in the first place? I mean, if I had lightning powers, I’m pretty sure I would use them instantly so my wife can find me. Especially in a mall parking lot.
So Crystal and Lockjaw is found while Gorgon and Karnak go up against Auran and her new bad guy reinforcements sent by Maximus. This is where the episode gets pretty awesome as Karnak and Gorgon finally get to unleash their powers and take it to Auron’s crew. We are treated to an effective flashback of Gorgon training Maximus in hand to hand combat just to highlight what a cunning weasel Maximus is, and then we get Gorgon unleashed on Auron and Mordis. Karnak is seemingly getting better from his head injury and also kicks copious amounts of Inhuman butt.
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But this is where things get shocking. We learn the tragic origin of Mordis. You see, he was locked away instantly after terrigenesis transformed Mordis into a living engine of death. He questions why he had to become a prisoner when Black Bolt got to be king. In one instant, Mordis’ back story makes him one of the most tragic characters on Marvel TV and tries to unleash his deadly energies against Gorgon. Gorgon grabs Mordis and creates a powerful hoof quake which seemingly kills both Gorgon and Mordis.
Did Marvel really just kill Gorgon, one of the most classic Inhuman characters? It kind of seems that way as a series that operated with low stakes upped the ante by killing a main character. This week, Gorgon also became perhaps the most engaging, likable, and interesting of the main Inhumans, so this death really sticks in my craw. Especially after Triton was so uselessly dispatched in the first minutes of the first episode. Do we really just toss out Lee and Kirby characters higgly-piggly now? But Gorgon’s death really did shake up a series that felt paint by numbers up until that moment.
Maximus has his own issues on the moon as he must put down an insurrection that now includes his major domo Tibor. This plotlines underscores how cunning Maximus is as he ends the rebellion by killing Tibor before it can truly begin. It is good to see Maximus be proactive and effective instead of just posturing and whispering. We get to see his anxieties as he fears that he is impotent and frail compared to his family.
With all this, Maximus finally sort of feels like a real Marvel villain. As we all know, the greatest Marvel villains are the ones you can almost agree with. After hearing Mordis’ tragic tale, it is easy to feel sympathy for Maximus’ cause. But one must also remember that Maximus is doing what he is doing not for the good of his fellow Inhumans, but for his own ego. This is proven as he slits Tibor’s throat.
So one can hope that Gorgon has a miraculous return at some point, but even with the crushing disappointment of losing one of Inhumans’ only fully likable characters, this episode was truly the series’ finest hour. There were still moments that made me want to punch someone, but far fewer this week.