Editors note: Due to the hectic nature of the holiday season, we decided to clump the Runaways Season 2 reviews together, instead of pushing out individual ones, to lessen the workload of our staffers.
The end of episode five feels like a turning point for the season. Gert’s anxiety becomes too much and she leaves the group to go get help. Karolina becomes closer with her father and learns more about her heritage, but she’s still skeptical of Jonah’s true intentions. And the Pride have failed to defeat Jonah who is now aware of just how disloyal they’ve all been.
All the Runaways seem to be going through a lot of emotional trauma in these three episodes. Alex’s betrayal by Darius hit him really hard. He’s grown to trust this man and looks to him as an alternate father. It seems that Darius does care for Alex as well, but he cares for himself and his family more. Geoffrey offers him a really good deal and seems to genuinely want the best for his old friend. So when Catherine shoots Darius, Geoffrey is understandably upset.
The ensuing rescue sequence where the Runaways save Alex was really cool. It’s nice to know that even though they’ve been fighting, Alex didn’t hesitate to call Nico when he was in trouble. Once they all get to the airport we get to see everyone using their powers to protect each other. They all seem to be getting better at using their powers, but Nico notices that they need to get stronger if they’re going to have any chance of defeating the Pride.
Since Alex had been so involved with Darius, Nico was the one who assumed his leadership role. Even though she was hurting after the confrontation with her mother, Nico motivates the group to start training harder. She also convinces everyone to go and save Alex, even though it feels like he’s abandoned them. This is a very natural progression for Nico’s character. She puts off confronting her own conflicting emotions by helping everyone else improve. She’s also just as capable of a leader as Alex, which is shown by her skepticism of Topher when he arrives at the hideout.
Even though there were some strong moments, the subplot with Topher did feel pretty tangential and somewhat unnecessary. Molly, in my opinion, continues to be the weakest character on the show. It still feels like the character is written to be 6 or 7 years old, especially when she forms a childlike bond to Topher. It is understandable that she’d feel some sort of connection with him because of all the deaths in her family. But then she goes and tells him everything they’ve discovered about the Pride. That’s something a child might be immature enough to do, but not a 14 year-old. That’s just poor writing.
However, Nico’s ploy to steal the vial of crushed rocks was really well done. It was very out of character for her to open up so much to a stranger and makes perfect sense that she’d do it to throw Topher off guard. It also enhances the idea that Nico is growing into a very competent leader. However, since the storyline with Topher is likely to end with his death, it’s a shame that a few of these character moments have to come at the expense of a less-than-stellar storyline.
The relationship between Nico and Karolina seems to be going well however. But it could become quite strained if her secret meetings with Jonah are discovered. Through these secret meetings we get confirmation that Jonah is an alien and he explains that his ship crashed and he’s been trying to excavate it all this time. Jonah also alludes to being much older than he appears. This is definitely an area that could be explored in the coming episodes. It could also be interesting to see how he created the Church of Gibborim.
Even though Karolina desperately wants to learn more about herself and her mysterious family, it seems that she’s doing it at the expense of the rest of the group. She even comes close to sabotaging Alex’s computer and jeopardizing everything they’ve worked for. If her relationship with Jonah gets out it could cause serious trust issues within the group and they only just started trusting Alex again.
Meanwhile, Janet definitely seems to be working on a way to put Jonah down for good. After getting the Abstract from Geoffrey she’s discovered that if Jonah uses the ship, the gravitational waves could destroy the city. After cracking the cipher, Janet and Victor begin working on a secret project to bring down Jonah. Last season they set up that Janet was incredibly intelligent and the writers seem to be expanding on that now.
It’s a nice change of pace to see the housewife play such an important part. Janet has shown that she’s capable of much more than what anybody gives her credit for. We also learn that that’s how exactly Robert felt which is perhaps why they had an affair. Although, hopefully Janet is able to succeed where Robert failed. But we’ll just have to wait and see.
4 glowing rocks out of 5.
Even though there were a few meandering plot lines, there was enough going on that it didn’t detract too much. If the storyline with Topher didn’t wrap up in episode 5 it would have dragged on way too long. Other than Molly, each of the Runaways have been shown to be very complex characters. The action in these episodes has been pretty well done for a Hulu show and seems to be a slight step up from last season. And the romantic relationships aren’t ignored, but they haven’t gotten in the way of the overall story. We’re also slowly unraveling some of the mysteries surrounding Jonah and the Church of Gibborim and, so far, the answers have made sense and been pretty satisfying. This season continues to do a great job of building upon the groundwork of the first.
- That cheerleader has had maybe 5 minutes of total screen time, but she’s become perhaps the most annoying character in the MCU.
- It’ll be really interesting to see where Gert’s character goes in the next few episodes. It’s a bit unclear if she’s just in the hospital to get meds then head back to the hideout or if she’s actually abandoned the group and is done running.
- The scene where Robert confronts Jonah was very well acted by both James Yaegashi and Julian McMahon. The entire scene was very tense and it was nice to see Robert be so assertive to protect his family.
- Dale and Sally are perhaps the stupidest smart people in the MCU and I love it! Their obliviousness knows no bounds.