Posted October 11, 2017 by Katelyn Barnes in Reviews

REVIEW: Inhumans S01E01 – Behold… The Inhumans

Marvel Inhumans
Marvel Inhumans

Episode: S01E01 – Behold…The Inhumans
Air Date: September 29, 2017
Executive Producer: Scott Buck, Jeph Loeb, Jim Chory, Stan Lee
Created by: Scott Buck
Starring: Anson Mount, Serinda Swan, Ken Leung, Eme Ikwuakor, Isabelle Cornish, Ellen Woglom, Iwan Rheon

Writing about comic book shows when you’re very new to comic books in general can be an interesting experience. In the case of ABC/Marvel’s Inhumans, it was downright right confounding. I went in to the pilot, “Behold…The Inhumans,” knowing one thing about the show — the wigs were bad. Like, really, really bad. How could I possibly get a handle on the universe overall? Luckily for me, Inhumans has been a confounding property from the beginning.

Without a comic book series of its own, Inhumans was squeezed into comics with other heroes, popping up here or there to aid The Fantastic Four and Thor. Eventually, they had a series but it wasn’t until 2011 that Marvel considered a movie franchise. In 2015, that idea was canned and now, in 2017, we have Marvel’s Inhumans on ABC, with an eight episode season, with the possibility of more, if successful.

Medusa Inhumans Episode 1 Behold The Inhumans

© ABC Television

While wouldn’t say the pilot was unsuccessful, there are some cringe-worthy elements. Terrible hair aside, world-building is given to the audience in exposition dialog, villain monologue, and crowd asides. The relationships are confusing, since everyone is family, but also some have slept together? Maybe “family” is a caste term? And the last 15 minutes, that big shocking twist, is marred by some terrible dramatic covers of “Paint it Black” and “Break On Through (To the Other Side)” and an over long montage that had me writing “this is embarrassing” in my notes.

But! But! The show did intrigue me. There’s a city, Attilan, on the moon! Full of people who, themselves, are full of a substance called Terrigen Mist that gives some of them powers. There’s a royal family. Black Bolt (Anson Mount), the king who speaks with sign language and emotional impressions through touch. Medusa with the bad hair (Serinda Swan), who can strangle with said hair and loves her husband, but feels stifled by the role of Queen. Maximus (Iwan Rheon), Black Bolt’s younger, human brother, who resents his position and lack of power. Crystal (Isabelle Cornish), Black Bolt and Maximus’ younger sister who has a giant and (sadly, poorly computerized) dog named Lockjaw who can transport people from place to place with one bump of his giant head.

Gorgon (Eme Ikwuakor), head of the army, who is committed to his job and family. And Karnak (Ken Leung) who can freaking freeze time and step out of his body after being shot and killed, analyze the angles mathematically and then step back into his body, reverse time and try again. That dude loves choices and is the coolest. There are regular humans, unblessed by the Terrigen Mist and thus, condemned to the mines. Oh! And Attilan is under an invisibility shield and has been for generations, but now human space technology is catching up and they’re all *this* close to being discovered.

Inhumans Episode 1 Behold The Inhumans


Of course, Maximus is in love with Medusa and is just smooth enough to gain the support of the royal guards and so he stages a half-hearted coup that ends with Black Bolt, Medusa (hairless, since Maximus shaves her head, in a very uneasily sexual scene), Karnak and Gorgon stranded on Earth (thanks, Lockjaw!) Crystal trapped in the castle, and Maximus lying to the unhappy people of the moon.

See? That’s all cool stuff. I want to know more of that world! I want to see Maximus struggle with the success (?) of his coup. I want to see Earth folk get closer and closer to discovering the truth. I want to see the average Moon folk struggle to find their place under Maximus’s rule. But I’m worried we’ll be stuck with the exiled royals on Earth. Black Bolt and Medusa stop a robber with a ray gun! Gorgon befriends a cop! Lockjaw shows up in NYC and confuses folk!

I’m not interested in watching Karnak and Gorgon and Black Belt and Medusa solve Earth problems. It’ll strain the relationships, strain the space-y weirdness and confuse the majority of viewers, like me, who know nothing of these characters and really don’t need another superhero-adapts-to-Earth show.

Marvel’s Inhumans is too weird for that! Let the show stick to space, politics, and royal problems! Let Marvel’s Inhumans be the PG-13 space version of Game of Thrones it so obviously yearns to be! People would love it. You already have Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., ABC. Let this one be weird. Please?

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Katelyn Barnes is a fast-talking, karaoke-loving, geek of all trades. If she isn’t belting out the best of Foreigner, then she’s got her nose in a book. She often does both at once. She is also a true devotee of all things geeky in television. It began, long ago, with Buffy, and now encompasses the best sci-fi and fantasy shows television has to offer. Born in New England and raised in the American Midwest, Katelyn has earned degrees in English and History. She spends much of her time writing and traveling to as many new places as she possibly can.