Monday, December 24, 2018

REVIEW: 'Runaways' - Karolina Mounts a Rescue Mission While Chase Learns More About Pride in 'Earth Angel'

Hulu's Runaways - Episode 2.12 "Earth Angel"

Victor recruits Chase to intern at Pride to prove that they are nothing more than concerned parents, Chase is skeptical. Karolina discovers Frank is holding Leslie at a detention facility and tries to rescue her mom with Nico, Molly and Vaughn.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. Premieres and finales may feature longer reviews. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Hulu's Runaways.

"Earth Angel" was written by Warren Hsu Leonard and directed by Stephen Surjik

Runaways has always struggled a little bit with juggling too many plots at once. And now, the show heads into its season finale with a number of interesting plot threats. It will once again be interesting to see which become important and which will just be delayed until a potential third season. This hour spends a lot of time dealing with Leslie and Frank as the outliers of the parents. The rest of Pride is still gathered together trying to get their children back. In fact, Victor and Janet have already succeeded in that endeavor. They have welcomed Chase back into their lives. He is still snooping around and keeping his friends' secrets. However, he's also given a tantalizing offer by Pride to join the organization and actually steer it in the direction that it has always promised to the world. Sure, it's crazy considering he is still a teenager. It's obvious that they are manipulating him in the hopes of retrieving all of their children. They won't fair as well as he does out of all of this. He has prominence at the moment because he was the first to leave the hostel. He has gone back home. Alex sees it as inevitable that people will want to leave. That's his way of coping with all of this. He sees some of the Runaways as not having the conviction to see all of this through to the end. Gert is mostly just happy to know that Old Lace is alive even if she is still trapped in a cage in her parents' basement. Meanwhile, Karolina sees the urgency when it comes to rescuing her mother from this conversion program. She can make an argument for it by saying that the Runaways need to claim one of Pride as their own. They may have lost Chase. He may be giving their parents important information. As such, it's valuable that Leslie supports the teens and tells them everything that she knows. Sure, she has been isolated with all of this church drama for the last few episodes. She may not know everything that has been going on with Pride. In fact, it's so sickening to watch as they experiment their new weapons on two unsuspecting employees over and over again. That's torturous and proves that the parents really don't have any strong moral ideals. Chase has only returned because his father is dying once more. That too is a fascinating detail because it proves that the aliens are all vastly different from one another. Victor has the same condition that Jonah did. Meanwhile, things seem to be fine with Tina so far. And then, Xavin continues to present herself to Karolina while making it clear that she is actually a shapeshifter who has been spying on everyone. Again, all of these are intriguing ideas. The show just has to find the right way to balance them in order for the impact to be meaningful. That's what made the reveal of Leslie's new pregnancy and the addition of her mother so lackluster. Those mostly felt like plot points to keep her busy and complicated. They didn't actually add anything of intrigue to the proceedings. The new baby mostly just gives the Runaways a convenient excuse to take her in and protect her. Meanwhile, Karolina continues to reckon with her identity as an alien and a symbol within her church. She too finds herself caged because of Frank's control over the church. He wants to reunite with his family. But he wants to show them that he is even more powerful and in control of their lives. That's horribly abusive. So, he gets exactly what he deserves by sounding like the pagan amongst the crowd seeing the majesty of Karolina's presence as an angel. That truly is a magical moment. But it's also just as stunning watching Karolina support Nico as she is struggling with the darkness of her powers. Her darkness may not fuel things in the same way that Karolina's lightness fuels hers. And so, all of this could still lead to major consequences. But again, that really could come from anywhere at this point.