Time flies way too fast. With less than a month to go and a stellar reception at last month’s NYCC, it was only a matter of time until the critic reviews for the much-awaited Hulu offering from Marvel, the Runaways, started showing. Alas they’re here and we’ve compiled some of them. Mind you, like most of TV reviews, they pertain to only a handful of episodes and not the entire season. With that being said, here they are!
The Hulu drama, developed by Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage (The O.C.), imbues that setup with emotional layers the source material (as good as it is) didn’t have. Exploiting the serial format of the medium, the series develops the shared backstory of titular teens, turning them into close-knit friends driven apart by tragedy, and transforming their parents from mustache-twirling supervillains into complex characters with distinct motivations, problems and flaws. Some of them are — dare we say it? — almost likable. – CBR
Runaways, through all of the magic, powers and superhero jargon, is a teen drama, closer in tone to The O.C. than Daredevil or Agents of Shield, and despite a scientology-esque religion, magical staff and, most of all, actual dinosaur, a fairly grounded one at that. The show could benefit from a slightly lighter tone and a stronger dose of comedy, to make some of its weirder elements easier to swallow, but it takes some legitimately bold risks and deserves praise for doing so. – Flickering Myth
Character dramas punctuated with action might not be what comes to mind when a fan first thinks of a Marvel TV show, but that doesn’t take away from the quality of Runaways. The cast is talented, the story is compelling, and the production is high quality. We should be thankful that we got this show instead of a movie, like Marvel originally planned, if only because we’ll get to relish in the story for more than two hours. – Comicbook
Led by early director Brett Morgen and Roxann Dawson, the first four episodes are well-realized in the ways that count, beyond the uniformly proficient character introductions. There’s a California opulence that conjures associations with Schwartz’s The O.C. The special effects, kept somewhat more limited than fans of the comic are likely to be expecting, are decent. And, not to spoil anything but because it’s important for comic book fans, Old Lace is introduced about as capably as one could hope for. Networks and streaming services want a Game of Thrones because they need to differentiate themselves and Runaways is not that kind of home run. What Runaways has going for it is being better than the fall’s other new Marvel shows in ABC’s unbearable Inhumans and Fox’s promising-but-muddled The Gifted. If everybody’s got to have a superhero family show at least it looks like Hulu has a good one and that’s differentiation, too. – THR
This far into its first season, Runaways has impressed me with its wonderful cocktail of earnestness, melodrama, and mystery, and I can’t wait to see the rest of it. My final opinion on the series will definitely depend on what comes next – but so far, it’s freshening up the feel of TV superheroics much like the original series did for the feel of early 2000s comics. – The Mary Sue
And while not necessarily a review, Nerdist put out a pretty juicy revealing breakdown about certain elements about the show. Read it if you don’t mind spoiler.
What do you think of the reviews? Let us know in the comments below!