There’s way too many comic book shows out there for me to review them all now. Fortunately, I’ve got some help from Jean-Luque Zephir, who will be tackling The Gifted for Lyles Movie Files. Let’s check out his thoughts on the debut episode eXposed.
In eXposed we are introduced to a world where mutants who are on the run aren’t even sure if the X-Men and Brotherhood of Mutants exist anymore. The first question is what happened to them? But don’t look for any answers soon in The Gifted’s season premiere.
Clarice Fong aka Blink (Jamie Chung) is on the run from law enforcement until she blinks out using her handy teleportation abilities. Once again, viewers are tossed into a world where regular humans oppress mutants.
Blink encounters more mutants on the run. Most of whom aren’t familiar to folks whose X-Men education starts and ends with the movie franchise. Marco Diaz aka Eclipse (Sean Teale) uses solar power as a weapon. Lorna Dane/Polaris (Emma Dumont) controls metal and John Proudstar/Thunderbird (Blair Redford) leads this mutant community.
Comic book readers will remember the ongoing question about Polaris’ parentage specifically if Magneto is her daddy. The Gifted at least lets us know she’s with Eclipse. This is a subtle nod from the creators in pairing her with an analogy for Polaris’ longtime comic book love interest, Havok, who also had solar based mutant powers.
Polaris doesn’t have Magneto’s temper as she refuses to kill officers after her. That moral stance doesn’t prevent her from getting captured and brought before federal prosecutor Reed Strucker (Stephen Moyer), who has a history dealing with mutants. Reed’s a family man with a wife, Caitlin (Amy Acker) and two children, Lauren (Natalie Alyn Lind) and Andy (Percy Hynes White). Little does Reed know his kids are also mutants.
While Lauren’s high school experience is fairly pleasant, Andy is tormented by bullies consistently. The bullying stops after a school dance attack triggers Andy’s nearly uncontrollable powers. As the students flee, Lauren reveals to Andy she’s got powers too, which she uses to deploy fields.
Naturally, this incident attracts the attention of the Sentinel Services, a federal organization hell bent on the abduction, subjugation, and destruction of mutant kind. The Sentinel Services do not discriminate against good or bad mutants either. If someone even carries a trace of the mutant genome and show symptoms of their powers they are a target. This also includes anyone who is affiliated with them including friends or family that try to stand in their way.
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That’s bad news for the Struckers. Caitlin leads Lauren and Andy away and tell Reed what’s happened. Reed’s choice isn’t really that tough. Stay a loyal government lackey or protect his family even if that means siding with a group of powerful mutants.
Eclipse and Thunderbird are down for the alliance, provided Reed passes on information on how to rescue Polaris. That rescue mission doesn’t go as well as planned and Reed gets captured.
For a first episode, eXposed had a lot of positive elements. New world, new mutants, and a new threat. However, it suffered some of the same clichés we’ve seen countless times in X-Men, which is life is hard for a mutant and the CGI looked as if the creators didn’t have a big enough budget to make the powers look incredible in comparison to the movies. This is only the beginning, so it should be interesting to see where we go on our journey with these new characters.
Rating: 7 out 10
Photo Credit: Ryan Green/FOX
Jean-Luque Zephir is a huge X-Men fan, lover of Anime, video games, movies, TV shows, and enjoys using technology