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TV Review: Marvel’s Inhumans S1E7 Havoc in the Hidden Land

MARVEL'S INHUMANSThe Royal Family returns to Attilan and comes face to face with Maximus.

Just when you think Marvel’s Inhumans can’t get any more worse, the show surprises you and does something that makes you not only scratch your head but also question why you’ve wasted the hours watching the show.

I wrote the above about the previous episode but this week’s hits new lows in not only stupid but also showing the hints of a much more intelligent show that failed to live up to its potential.

Lets talk about that potential bit….

Maximus pivots here and we learn that his coup-de-tat was all about getting a second chance a Terrigenesis. There’s not an easier way to go about this? He pivots and where the character was a populist in many ways, now he feels like a Trump stand in, only in it for self gain. If the season had played off of that from the beginning things might have improved but it’s taken seven episodes for the bad guy’s motives to actually be shown as bad. And this is his move? Take over in a risky move so he can get a do-over? The want is rather disproportionate from the action to obtain it.

Then there’s Black Bolts’ group’s response. They confront Maximus and trade the one thing he wants for the throne. They don’t stake a rightful claim, they make a deal, again treating the people as pawns as opposed to a group they actual want to lead and treat well. This is a game between two factions of elites and everyone else is a pawn in that. They accept the deal and don’t get it in writing and then lose their bargaining chip. This is the dumbest leadership I’ve ever seen and besides their “haves” attitude, this action alone should disqualify them from ruling again. They’ve shown they can’t think beyond anything other than themselves.

Then there’s Gorgon, who’s still dead. But a plan to bring him back through a second Terrigenesis? Wait. What? Why not just inject the DNA that’ll bring him back alive? How does being dead for a day now not stop this from even happening? It’s the low point in a show full of them. Everyone involved with the show should not allowed to touch others after what has been displayed here. It’s just a bad understanding of all of the source material.

When you think this show can’t get worse, it somehow manages to with plot aspects that make no sense at all and characterizations that make you dislike the characters even more.

Overall Rating: 2.0

TV Review: Marvel’s Inhumans S1E6 The Gentleman’s Name is Gorgon

MARVEL'S INHUMANSGorgon and Karnak take on Auran and her Inhuman army with disastrous results.

Just when you think Marvel’s Inhumans can’t get any more worse, the show surprises you and does somethign that makes you not only scratch your head but also question why you’ve wasted the hours watching the show.

The show converges two plotlines and as another having you really question what the writers of the show were thinking.

Most of the show feels like the characters wandering around in a haze as they try to find each other and finally Crystal is united with Black Bolt and Medusa. How it happens is a little silly, but what could have been resolved a few episodes ago finally happens. There’s some interesting decisions that involve a jealous ex-girlfriend in a plotline that was unnecessary and rather a waste of time. It feels like this entire plotline’s plot is to say “not all humans are bad.” It then kills that argument in one scene that again makes you wonder why even go that route. A waste of time and potential.

Then there’s Gorgon and Karnak who go after Auran and her army cause fighting drug dealers wasn’t enough. The action is boring and results in someone dying but that unto itself left me frustrated and angry at the waste and set up. Basically, one of Auran’s forces is too dangerous (and you can guess who) and a choice is made to bring down a roof on him which catches Gorgon in it too (spoiler, sorry, but do you care at this point?). So, Gorgon is seemingly killed. But, Gorgon had the enemy in a choke hold and could have choked him out or snapped his neck. For training this force, Gorgon sucks at his job. The set up was also a bit too close to Man of Steel and in this case self-sacrifice was chosen. While Gorgon was one of the more interesting characters, he never reached a point his death would have a major impact on viewers. It’s shock without actual connection.

And that sums up the show really. It goes through the motions with strange choices and decisions that don’t make much sense when you think about it and feels like no one really has a handle on the subject or the characters. While many think Marvel’s Iron Fist was a low for the company Marvel’s Inhumans says “hold my beer.”

Overall Rating: 3.0

TV Review: Marvel’s Inhumans S1E5 Something Inhuman This Way Comes…

MARVEL'S INHUMANSOn the run from Auran’s forces, Black Bolt and Medusa reluctantly work with Louise to help locate the rest of their family; Maximus’ actions change the game completely.

With the series half way through its first season run, it’s hard to call Marvel’s Inhumans a success. Instead of the trippy visuals and epic family drama created by Jack Kirby, we’re dealt with Lost… literally lost, the cast has spent the last three episodes looking for each other. Slow is an understatement as to how to describe this series which has sucked anything interesting out of its source material and delivered a bland show that feels like it should have been burnt off during a summer run after which we could all forget it.

It’s hard to really say what stands out this episode. There’s Karnak getting his mojo back sort of and… well that’s about it. There’s little that’s interesting and the acting and dialogue remain as bland as ever. This is the “white bread” of live action comic adaptations. It’s unassuming, bland, doesn’t take risks, yet we eat it because we feel like we need to. Five episodes in and I keep holding out hope that we’ll see a twist that’ll make it all worth it, a tie-in to the Inhumans plot lines we’ve already seen on Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

The one good thing about this episode is that we finally get Maximus being bad and begin to betray his philosophy and freeing of his people. But, on the flip side we get Medusa and Black Bolt entrenched in their rule and when confronted they brush off criticism. There’s no growth and we aren’t given much to cheer for either warring faction.

I hold out hopes, but it looks like this series may go down as one of the worst live action adaptions in recent memory. But, there’s still a few episodes where it can redeem itself… so we’re saying there’s a chance.

Overall Rating: 5.0


TV Review: Marvel’s Inhumans S1E3 Divide — And Conquer

MARVEL'S INHUMANSThe Inhumans desperately search for each other in the wake of Maximus’ coup; They must learn who they can trust on Earth.

While the first two episodes of Marvel’s Inhumans weren’t the disaster that everyone made them out to be, the third episode isn’t much better as it feels like it expands upon the first two and not much else.

We catch up with the various characters whether they’re on Earth, being pursued on Earth or on the Moon. They wander around and try to figure out what’s going on (everyone is) and by the end of the episode things feel like they’re almost in the same spot.

There’s some plot movement in that Black Bolt rallies some allies as does Gorgon. But then there’s groan inducing moments like Maximus allowing Crystal to escape and Medusa attempting to get money from an ATM. Karnak’s issues are explained but overall the episode and plot moves at a glacial pace. Maximus unleashes what’s hinted at as a deadly Inhuman but even that feels rather ho-hum when things get rolling. It’s all rather… boring. Again, it’s not bad, it’s just not very interesting or good either.

The other issue is that Maximus, who’s supposed to be the villain, actually is right in many ways. He wants to throw off the caste system and remove his people’s history of determining citizens’ roles based on their abilities. At its core, he’s right, it’s just he’s also a major creep, especially when it comes to Medusa and Crystal. So, right message, wrong messenger.

With a muddled plot (where the bad guy is right) and characters we could care less about, we’re left with a bore of a show that only feels like it should be watched to see how it connects to the great Marvel universe. The show isn’t good. The show isn’t bad. The show is flat, like its acting.

Overall Rating: 5.0


TV Review: Marvel’s Inhumans S1E1 & 2 Behold…The Inhumans; Those Who Would Destroy Us

MARVEL'S INHUMANSAfter months of trailers, abysmal reviews and a less then stellar release in IMAX theaters, Marvel’s Inhumans made its television debut last week with a 2 hour airing of the first two episodes. Given the amount of bad press this series has gotten, it was impossible for me not to have read some of the reviews and thoughts on this show before seeing it for myself. But, I promised myself to keep an open mind; maybe it wouldn’t be as bad as critics were saying it was. 2 hours and many eye rolls later, I came to the conclusion that everything I had read was right; this was indeed the weakest entry in the Marvel cinematic/television universe. Warning, spoilers are possible; when I start ranting I just go with it.

Inhumans follows king Black Bolt, queen Medusa and the rest of the Inhuman royal family as they rule over Attilan, a hidden city on Earth’s moon where inhumans live in peace and safety among their own kind. As in the comic books, Black Bolt’s brother, Maximus, stages a coup against the royal family, thinking that he is better suited for the throne to lead the inhumans forward. This leads to the royal family fleeing their home and ending up on Earth, separated from each other and trying to devise a plan to get back home and stop Maximus.

Doesn’t sound bad, right? A monarchy on the run, family betrayal, all with super powered characters?  Sign me up!  Too bad the execution doesn’t connect with the idea. The biggest problem with Inhumans are the characters and how they are portrayed. Serinda Swan (Medusa) is stiff and wooden, not at all carrying herself as a queen, let alone how Medusa is shown in the comics. Anson Mount (Black Bolt) is pretty much just a guy standing around, as Black Bolt cannot speak unless he wants to destroy all of Attilan with his voice. Which is fine, that is the character, and the use of sign language allows him to communicate through Medusa which is different from the comics, but a nice touch to have him actually do something.  The rest of the time, he is just staring at his co-stars or mugging badly for the camera.  Seriously, some of his over exaggerated facial expressions had me laughing out load at my tv, so often in fact my dog got tired of hearing me and left the room. Iwan Rheon (Maximus) is the only one who shows any signs of acting. Though his Maximus plays off as a watered down Loki, at least with him we get some hints of emotion and purpose.

Karnak, Gorgon (or Gor-gone, as his name is pronounced in the show and drove me crazy every time!), Triton and Crystal round out the royal family, and I really have no need to go into much depth with them. With the exception of Karnak (Ken Leung) who shows some moments of being an interesting character, the cast really need to work on their delivery.  I felt nothing from any of them, and don’t think they were the right choices for their roles. Gorgon is in no way an imposing captain of the royal guard, and the acting shown by Isabelle Cornish (Crystal) did a real disservice to a character I have always liked. But this all really isn’t the actors fault (entirely) but rather of the dialogue and story they are given to work with. Sure, we have a royal coup, but that’s just a plot point; there is no real tone or direction to this story and it just seems to drag along from scene to scene (and believe me, it feels like a long drag).

And WOW, the settings and costumes! Attilan feels cold and sterile, both inside and out. More of an industrial warehouse and less like a kingdom and safe haven for a civilization. The costumes, if we call them that, are underwhelming and cheap looking.  I would expect a royal family to look a little more dignified and not be running around in pleather and leggings.  The make up isn’t anything spectacular either; we have Triton who’s only defining aquatic characteristic are some subtle gill lines on his neck, but otherwise looks like a melted Gumby with a slight ridge or seam running the length of this head.  Would it have been that hard to give him a fin like the books? And Gorgon’s hooves, or what are supposed to be his hooves, look like knee high boots and don’t really look like the impressive legs of his comics counterpart. In fact, that was a problem gnawing at me through the whole show; these Inhumans don’t look, well, inhuman! Yes, I know that not all inhumans have outward transformations, but through all the scenes of the various inhumans on Attilan, and Gorgon and Triton themselves, we don’t see any over the top, strange transformations. I understand this is tv, but Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. gave us a Lash that matched the comics, and Raina had a huge transformation that was treated well for tv. A little more effort on this would have given Inhumans a more cohesive feel to the source material.


Then there are smaller moments that really just angered me. Karnak is an inhuman who is able to find the flaw in anyone or anything. This ‘power’ was shown in an interesting way that I really liked.  But then we have Karnak attempting to climb down a mountain, and falls. He couldn’t see the flaw in his descent and work out a safe way to get to the bottom? Or Black Bolt, when he arrives on earth, is amazed by someone taking pictures on their cell phone, that he snatches it and with a caveman like expression, looks at it like some wonderful new thing. Yet in scenes before this, the royal family have wrist communicators that can bend from wrist watches to mini computers, and video screens that appear in thin air…hard to see why a cell phone would baffle him. But the worst moment for me (spoilers, as warned) is with Medusa. In early trailers, fans everywhere were appalled by how bad Medusa’s hair looked when using her powers. Even in this aired pilot, it isn’t the greatest accomplishment in special effects, but it is better then the trailers. But 30 minutes into the show, Medusa is stripped of her power, a little too easily if you ask me, and left broken on the floor. WELL, I guess that’s how they decided to address that problem! We don’t know how to handle it, so we’ll just get rid of it. I was so close to turning it off at that point.

By now, I’m sure I’ve made my feelings clear on this show’s premiere. Weak writing, stiff acting and cheap looking costumes and effects just make me shake my head and want to ask the higher ups at Marvel what the hell were they thinking to let this air? It certainly did not deserve an IMAX release, and the 2 hour premier just dragged along at a very slow pace. I didn’t come away feeling anything for these characters or the story, other then disappointment. The ONLY bright spot for me was Lockjaw.  The computer generated dog had me rooting for him more then the flesh and blood actors did.  I must be a glutton for punishment, because I am planning on tuning in next week. Not because I’m on the edge of my seat with anticipation, but to see if there is any chance of this getting better. It’s probably a lot to hope for.

Overall Rating: 3

TV Review: Marvel’s Inhumans S1E1 Behold… the Inhumans; Those Who Would Destroy Us

The royal family — stranded in Hawaii after a military coup — faces internal strife, which they must overcome in order to return home before their way of life is destroyed forever.

After months of bad word of mouth, Marvel’s Inhumans made its television debut introducing us to a new facet of the Marvel live action universe. Going in to it, I was expecting a disaster, and after watching the first two episodes, the show doesn’t feel like one, instead it’s more like a middle grade episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

I could spend articles saying what the show should be, the easiest being something that plays off of the groundwork its sister show has laid out, but instead I’m going to do my best to focus on what it is.

Marvel’s Inhumans sees itself as a familial epic akin to Game of Thrones and you can see that show’s influence but so much is missing. Acting, special fx, pacing, all fall far behind that show. Lets start with acting.

It’s hard to debate if it’s the writing, the actors, the direction, or some combination of it all, but it feels like everyone is stiff and overall the acting and delivery is lifeless. No matter the actor, no matter the role, it all is so boring and not engaging (I seriously can’t think of one actor that stands out right now). This was one of the “silliest” concepts being taken way too seriously and that led to a drab two hours that dragged on. That drag was some of the series’ two episode’s biggest issues. What took an hour felt like it could have been done in a half hour. Up the pacing and that acting wouldn’t have been as much of an issue.

The special fx has been one of the biggest topics of the show and I can imagine on an IMAX screen how every minute detail would look horrible. On a television screen, it looks comparable to its sister show. Not good, not bad, just a bit mixed. It’s clear there were budgetary and time issues when it came to this and I can only think this led to the choice of shaving Medusa’s head.

My final gripe of the series is that the characters are generally unlikable. Beyond his rather rapey overtones, Maximus is actually right in what he says. There’s a caste system and the ruling class seems to have little regard for the lowest caste. Maximus isn’t wrong in his ideas, though similar to Fidel Castro, you know his just revolution against the corrupt/aloof ruling class will only lead to a corrupted vision.

The two hours first two episodes isn’t bad at all, it’s also not all that great. The series feels rushed, not well thought out and misses every opportunity to do things interesting (why ignore S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s Inhuman set up!?). The show is bland and part of that is that we’ve seen everything presented and have seen it done better elsewhere. The biggest thing missing from Jack Kirby’s creations are imagination.

Overall Rating: 6.0

Marvel’s Inhumans Get Character Posters

Out this fall, Marvel’s Inhumans is a joint production between Marvel, ABC, and IMAX. Check out newly released character posters of the main characters below.

Marvel’s Inhumans will premiere a version of the first two episodes in IMAX theatres for a two-week period beginning September 1st. ABC will then air the entirety of the series on the network, with additional exclusive content that can only been seen on ABC. Marvel’s Inhumans will premiere on ABC on Friday, September 29th at 8:00-10:00pm ET/PT. (ABC)

The First Inhumans Trailer is Released

Marvel has revealed the first trailer for this fall’s Marvel’s Inhumans. This trailer is different than what was shown during the ABC upfronts and features new footage and a better idea as to what to expect.

Marvel’s Inhumans first debuts in theaters on IMAX screens September 1 and then the series begins September 29 on ABC.

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