With 16 feature films and now 8 TV shows, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been going strong for nearly a decade. Enter Marvel’s Inhumans, the latest entry in the ever expanding MCU. Inhumans is about the royal family of Attilan which is a city located under a dome on the Moon. The Royal Family is lead by Black Bolt (Anson Mount) and Medusa (Serinda Swan). Rounding out the Royal Family are Gorgon (Eme Ikwuakor), Triton (Mike Moh), Karnak (Ken Leung), Crystal (Isabelle Cornish) and Maximus (Iwan Rheon of Game of Thrones fame). Inhumans are a race of evolved humans that receive abilities after they are exposed to the Terrigen Mist. But not every Inhuman receives abilites like Black Bolt’s brother Maximus.
Inhumans starts off pretty promising with Triton on the island of O’ahu trying to rescue a new Inhuman who was exposed to a terrigen tainted water supply and was transformed by it and bring her back to Attilan where she would be safe. Triton and the girl are attacked by a paramilitary group and Triton is shot and goes missing. Cut to Attilan where we are introduced to Black Bolt and Medusa who are sharing an intimate moment when we are shown that Medusa can control her hair to move objects as well as fight people. Black Bolt is not able to speak because his voice is deadly and destructive therefore he uses sign language in order to communicate with the Royal family.
After a lot of explanation of how Inhumans receive their abilities, Maximus starts to sow the seeds of doubt in Black Bolt’s ability to lead the Inhumans. Maximus believes that Earth is key to the future of the Inhumans and that they should take it. Black Bolt disagrees and Maximus sets out to take the throne from the Black Bolt and attack the earth. That is as much as I can say about the story without spoiling it.
Let’s start with the things that are good about Marvel’s Inhumans. The first would be the performances by Anson Mount and Iwan Rheon. Mount brings plenty to the table as the silent king with not only his facial expressions but through his ability to use sign language to communicate as well. Iwan Rheon is also perfect as Maximus and brings weight to his performance and I really started to sympathize with his character being an outsider. Ken Leung also brings a lot of fun to the show in his action scenes and his love / hate relationship with the giant teleporting dog Lockjaw. Oh I can’t forget about Lockjaw! I have never wanted a giant teleporting bulldog before in my life but now I do. While he is digital and it is apparent, I loved what Marvel did with bringing Lockjaw to life. I will also say that the costuming and the set design is really well done.
The show definitely has its flaws and a lot of that comes from too many subplots and way too many characters introduced in the first episode. One subplot that is really annoying deals with a teenage boy who has the ability to see the future that Maximus tries to exploit. Another involves a lunar rover being destroyed after it bumps into the dome that protects Attilan and a NASA scientist trying to figure out what happened. One subplot that does work out well involves Black Bolt’s arrival on earth and how he must deal with the consequences of his actions. There are also times when the show tries to be political like Game of Thrones or The Expanse and it just doesn’t work out quite as well. I also feel that if they had introduced members of the Royal Family on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. it would have been easier to spin this show off. There are also times when the CGI effects are a little too notiecable and can throw off the viewer. If ABC really wants this show to succeed then they should trim the fat from the script a bit and improving some very wooden and cheesey dialogue. A move from Friday night to a middle of the week time slot could possibly generate better ratings.
Is Marvel’s Inhumans perfect? No, but it is a solid entry in the ever growing MCU and it should be seen.
2.75 out of 5 Lockjaws