Things continue to get worse for pretty much everyone on The Gifted, as we see what it means to have “no Mercy.” The only things staying consistent this season are that the Inner Circle seem to be virtually unstoppable, and that the Mutant Underground keeps suffering losses and falling apart. I get there needs to be a low point for the heroes to rebound from, but this is getting ridiculous.
This week’s prequel scene shows a bit of how Reeva got to be who she is now, and, as you’d expect, it’s an ugly story with bigotry and violence. In the present, Reeva goes over a very bare-bones version of her plan to assault Creed Financial, and there are a lot of questions that aren’t being answered. Rebecca has some doubts about being able to use her power on something as massive as the vault they’re aiming for, and Andy offers more of his reassurances. When did he get to be designated cheerleader, anyway?
The rest of Andy’s family is not having anywhere near as good a time, as Reed’s powers continue to flare out of control, destroying everything he touches. Lauren is keeping watch over him, and she’s being very clever with the use of her own powers. Reed is worried he’s putting everyone else in danger, and Kate turns down all of his noble, self-sacrificing plans and offers. The team meets up and bats around suggestions on what to do. Blink suggests using the Morlocks, which gets shot down, and I don’t know how that would have worked. I’m sure the people in the underground tunnels would love to have someone around who could disintegrate a key support at a bad time. Kate comes up with a good idea, and they set to work.
Also not having a good time is Jace Turner, who is on the phone arguing with what is apparently his wife’s divorce attorney. She won’t even talk to him, which pisses Jace off even more. Officer Wilson comes in and hints a meeting with a very important backer of the Purifier cause, and Jace is surprised at the extent of the security measures required. Reeva keeps a dinner date that isn’t at all as it seems, and it’s probably one of the few times in history a man feels bad when his date surprises him with three attractive blondes. We learn who the hapless man is, why Reeva targeted him, and that she does still have some feelings hiding under that odd hairstyle.
Esme Frost is stroking her burned arm when Lorna finds her and makes a surprising request. Esme tries to get out of it, then gives in and wonders how Reeva is going to feel about this. I wonder that too, and we never get to see the scene, so I’m still wondering. Marcos is reinforcing the ambulance they plan on using to move Reed (why not have Blink portal him there?) and tells John he needs to ask Blink some uncomfortable questions. Marcos and Blink have their own argument, and I’ll admit, she makes a few good points.
Turner and Wilson go to their meeting, where the mysterious backer is revealed to be influential talk show host Benedict Ryan. Ryan praises Jace’s work so far, and then asks for more. Jace isn’t willing to do what Ryan wants, showing some actual loyalty to his former Sentinel Services comrades. It’s one of the few upstanding things Turner has done this season. Ryan is disappointed, Wilson, furious.
Reed keeps battling his out of control powers, and foolishly picks up a family picture. Well, what did he think was going to happen? He and Lauren get a few moments together before Blink shows up and says we have to go. Again, I’d think she would at least port him down to the ambulance, if not all the way to the clinic, but there’s no sign of that happening. The Inner Circle makes various preparations for their raid, including rallying the troops, a tense visit with an ex, and child-care. The early part of the raid goes flawlessly, because the Inner Circle seems to be damn near perfect, and the guards inside are oddly ill-prepared for mutant attack, considering what the company supposedly does. The Frosts use their powers to make the most outspoken, anti-mutant hater record a statement, as they’ve done before. The rest of the team gets down to the vault.
John sets up Reed’s new living space, and it brings back bad memories of his fellow soldier who recently died there in the Purifier raid (because there wasn’t another room they could use? Shouldn’t that one have all sorts of acid damage?). Marcos tries to give him a peptalk, then turns it into another bit of casting doubt about Blink, one of their few remaining useful powered members and John’s girlfriend. Nice timing, Marcos.
As she feared, Rebecca has troubles with the safe. Andy goes from cheerleader to trainer and has her harness all the dark memories of her time in the mental hospital to fuel her rage and powers. Boy, he’s gonna regret that soon. Wilson and Turner argue some more, and I swear Wilson pulled the Jedi mind trick on Turner, who suddenly changes his mind for no real clear reason.
The Inner Circle is poised to get out clear and clean, with the home team of Underground traitor Sage and an unexpected babysitter cheering them on. The babysitter gets in a few good lines here. Kate has turned her obsessive personality to going through Reed’s father’s papers, and is trying to track down his former assistant, because she might have the only clue on what to do about Reed’s condition. Lauren wonders if the family is cursed, and Reed suddenly wakes up, saying he thinks the attack has passed and he feels much better. After Marcos has dropped his many unsubtle hints, John and Blink have a tense conversation about her activities with the Morlocks.
Kate convinces Reed to help search for Madeline the missing assistant, despite the fact that Reed was just feeling better (now she says he’s getting worse and he agrees) and that they barely got him across town, and this person isn’t in the state. Kate takes a huge risk which directly contradicts her “You’re getting worse” statement of a moment ago, and it convinces him to go along with this madness.
The heist has gone well, despite the fact that the vault didn’t really have anything all that special in it. They didn’t have another computer anywhere their hostage could have used? The team is on the way out when the ranting bigot from before starts up again. Rebecca decides she’s had enough, and jumps out front in the psycho-killer contest, taking the lead from the Frosts. Jace is at the studio when word comes through of the attack (somehow before the police get there) at Creed. The Frosts tell everyone it’s time to go, and they flee after Rebecca has seriously gone to the dark side.
What I liked: The heist was actually a well put-together plan, the issue of what was actually in the vault to one side. I don’t buy they made an adamantium vault to protect a computer. The Lorna/Esme scene was good. Lauren is getting very creative with her powers and uses them well here. Kate’s idea about where to bring Reed was a good one.
What I didn’t: They seem to have forgotten what Blink can do, as she never uses her powers once this episode, despite the several times they would have been very useful and saved a lot of work. Kate just flits from one obsession to the next (Andy! Madeline!). I don’t get how both Wilson changed Turner’s mind and Kate, Reed’s, so easily. Is there a rogue telepathic virus going around or something? Reeva’s sentimental side seemed really sudden and out of character. The Mutant Underground just keeps doing worse and worse. Aren’t they supposed to be the good guys here? Can’t they catch a break on something? Why is John upset that Blink helped the Morlocks get food? I could see it if they were knocking over banks or something.
Season One of this show was great. Season Two seems to have slipped a good bit. I’ll give this one a low 3 out of 5.