Marvel's Runaways (Hulu)

Adam Lenhardt

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'Marvel's Runaways' Finds Its Cast

An adaptation of the Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona comic series that ran from 2003 to 2015, "Runaways" is Marvel's latest entry into television and its first collaboration with Hulu. The show is described as follows:

"Every teenager thinks their parents are evil. What if you found out they actually were? 'Marvel’s Runaways' is the story of six diverse teenagers who can barely stand each other but who must unite against a common foe–their parents."

Casting has been announced for the six kids:
  • Rhenzy Feliz (“Teen Wolf,” “Casual”) as Alex Wilder, a loud-and-proud nerd. Admittedly a bit of a loner, Alex spends much of his free-time playing video games, but deep down, what he wants most is to reunite his childhood group of friends.

  • Lyrica Okano (“The Affair,” “Unforgettable”) as Nico Minoru, a tough, intelligent, and independent young woman who embodies teenage angst. A budding “Wiccan,” Nico’s carefully crafted goth appearance isolates her from her peers and family, but maybe what she really needs is someone to talk to.

  • Virginia Gardner (Project Almanac, “Goat,” “Little Bitches”) as Karolina Dean, whose model-perfect exterior masks a lot going on behind her professionally whitened smile. She is burdened by the lofty expectations and responsibilities put upon her by her parents. Underneath her veneer of privilege and perfection, Karolina is experiencing a newfound eagerness to explore her identity and pursue her own desires.

  • Ariela Barer (“New Girl,” “One Day at a Time”) as Gert Yorkes, a purple-haired, bespectacled, contemporary riot grrrl. Never passing up a moment to stand on a soapbox, Gert sometimes wields her persona as a brash social justice warrior to mask her true feelings.

  • Gregg Sulkin (“Faking It,” “Don’t Hang Up,” “Anti Social”) as Chase Stein is a lacrosse-playing, high school heartthrob. While many write him off as a dumb jock, Chase exhibits flashes of untapped brilliance in engineering, not unlike his wildly successful father’s.

  • Allegra Acosta (“100 Things to do Before High School,” “Just Add Magic”) as Molly Hernandez, the youngest and most innocent member of her friend group, is known for her peppy positivity and a deep yearning to belong.
“The fun and chemistry that this group of talented actors create is wonderful and we’re so excited to bring these beloved characters to life,” said Jeph Loeb, Executive Producer and Head of Marvel Television.

Runaways comic co-creator and series executive consultant Brian K. Vaughn added, “I’m so excited for fans of the comic to watch this perfect cast of amazing actors, all of whom embody the spirit of their characters more than I ever could have imagined.”

“We have had a total blast bringing Brian and Adrian’s amazing story to life. We’re so happy they love the Runaways we’ve assembled as much as we do,” added Executive Producers/Showrunners Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage.

“Marvel’s Runaways” is executive produced by series showrunners/writers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage (“THE O.C.,” “GOSSIP GIRL”) along with Marvel’s Head of Television, Jeph Loeb (“Marvel’s Luke Cage,” “Marvel’s Iron Fist”) and Jim Chory (“Marvel’s Daredevil,” “Marvel’s Jessica Jones.”) Fake Empire’s Lis Rowinski will produce as well. Marvel’s Runaways is a co-production with ABC Signature Studios.
 

Aaron Silverman

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One of very few comic series that I've read a fair amount of. It'll be interesting to see where they go with this.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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'Marvel's Runaways' Sets Remaining Cast for Television Project with Hulu

Here are the adults who will be playing the main kids' parents:
  • Ryan Sands (“Hat Hair,” “The Wire”) as Geoffrey Wilder – is a man defined by the grueling path he’s taken to achieve his self-made success. A hulking presence, Geoffrey can effortlessly shift from approachable father to intimidating strategist with his son Alex.
  • Angel Parker (“The People v. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story,” “Lab Rats,” “The Strain”) as Catherine Wilder – a successful lawyer, is deliberate and calculating in both her words and actions. But when it comes to her family, she’s fiercely loyal and a loving mother to her son Alex.
  • Brittany Ishibashi (“This Is Us,” “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows”) as Tina Minoru – a perfectionist “tiger mom.” In her professional life, she is a brilliant innovator and ruthless CEO. Emotionally, she is less confident, often shying away from difficult conversations with her daughter Nico and careful to avoid explicit displays of her feelings.
  • James Yaegashi (“Breakfast at Tiffany’s” on Broadway, “Madame Secretary”) as Robert Minoru – a gentle and brilliant beta, the Woz to his wife’s Jobs. Warm and feeling, Robert sometimes struggles with being married to a woman who so forcefully barricades her emotions while caring about Nico.
  • Kevin Weisman (“Hello Ladies,” “Alias”) as Dale Yorkes – a beardy, dad-core bioengineer. Incredibly science-minded, he has a deep love for his family but oftentimes falls short at knowing the right things to say to Gert.
  • Brigid Brannagh (“Angel,” “Army Wives,” “True Colors”) as Stacey Yorkes – an absent-minded and professorial bioengineer. Perpetually dawning Birkenstocks and a messy bun, Stacey utilizes a progressive approach to her parenting style to Gert.
  • Annie Wersching (“Timeless,” “The Vampire Diaries”) as Leslie Dean – a complicated beauty, is a poised and skilled leader. Clear-minded, focused, and charismatic, Leslie draws in devoted allies and followers who are taken by her success and charm, particularly with her daughter Karolina.
  • Kip Pardue (“Remember the Titans,” “Ray Donovan”) as Frank Dean – a former teen star who rode a short-lived movie career and is now teeming with insecurity. Floundering in his professional career as an actor, Frank is seeking to renew purpose in his life while being a father to Karolina.
  • James Marsters (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Angel”) as Victor Stein – an engineering genius who may just save the word from itself. Electric cars, space travel; the military and NASA both look to him for answers. As a father to Chase, Victor has lofty expectations for his son, and when they aren’t met, his retribution can be fierce.
  • Ever Carradine (“The Handmaids Tale,” “Goliath”) as Janet Stein – a perfect PTA mom. Harboring a brilliant mind of her own, she has made deep sacrifices for her husband’s world-changing career. Though she hides it for the wellbeing of her son Chase, Janet longs for more from her life.
Some really talented names in the mix there.
 

Sean Bryan

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Full Trailer:
This looks like it could be good. Looking forward to checking it out.

November seems to be quite the Marvel month. Thor, Punisher, Runaways, and then Agents of SHIELD starts back on December 1st.

What does Hulu charge? I've never looked into it.
 

Josh Dial

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So we're five episodes in and I think this show is fantastic. Runaways is better than The Gifted in every way (though I am liking The Gifted just fine).

While a few key elements have been changed--most notably Molly has been aged up, her parents are dead, and she's been adopted by the Yorkes--the story so far has tracked the first volume.

The casting has been generally excellent, with only a few of the parents as weak links. All of the Runaways themselves are great, and Ariela Barer as Gert is the standout.

Old Lace, a mix of practical and CGI effects, looks pretty good for television.

I'm interested to see if the show continues to follow the comics, and, in particular, if a few key events happen (which I won't spoil until the thread hits two pages, since I think there is still a bug where spoilers show on mobile versions for threads under one page).
 

Hanson

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It's definitely better than Gifted, which I had to quit because it was so ludicrously bad on virtually every level. The first 4 episodes were a slow burn, but it's starting to cook now. The cast is really clicking and the dialog mostly works, unlike the tone deaf Gifted.
 

Sean Bryan

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I just started watching this weekend and I really like it.

I just wish all episodes were available at once like with Netflix. I finished episode 5. On what day do the new weekly episodes become available?
 

Josh Dial

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The first season just wrapped up and while, shortly after my previous post, the story stopped tracking the comic storyline, what has unfolded has nevertheless been quite entertaining.

No dud episodes, though a few cliffhangers resolved poorly (which is to say they were hand-waved away or simply ignored).

The costuming is absolutely stellar. Pretty much every character's "look" is captured and rendered in a way that seems both authentic to the comics and the world in which the characters live on screen.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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I subscribed to Hulu for the "Veronica Mars" revival, so I find got around to watching the first season of this. I would rate it just above "Iron Fist" Season 1 for the second-weakest season of Marvel television on a streaming service.

The concept is basically The Breakfast Club as a superhero series, so our six protagonists are more archetypes than fully developed characters: the jock, the computer nerd, the goth, the preacher's daughter, the social activist, and the little kid sister. Compare that to "Cloak & Dagger", where both protagonists are richly developed and fully three-dimensional characters.

The template of the show is a teen soap opera, and this means that there are quite a few scenes where characters are on a tight ticking clock but still pause to talk about their feelings.

The first crucial misstep was using the second episode to retell the pilot from the parents' perspective. It was a real momentum killer.

The second crucial misstep was building the season around withholding information from the audience. The stakes weren't even clearly established until an episode or two before the season finale.

The third crucial misstep was not providing a satisfying arc for the first season. All of the other Marvel shows, whatever their various faults, provided self-contained seasons with a beginning, middle, and end. This whole first season felt like prologue; by the time the credits rolled on the first season finale, it felt like the show was just getting started. All of the key story threads were left hanging.

I did like that the parents got almost equal screen time to the kids, and that they were complicated and flawed rather than just straightforwardly evil. I think it would have helped to be shown exactly what Jonah had done for each of them, to justify them going along with and even facilitating the murders of fifteen children.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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Finished the second season tonight. It's got a lot of bizarre stuff in it, like the abandoned underground mansion built into the hills near the Griffith Observatory.

The last handful of episodes got steadily more interesting. The cliffhangers were genuinely effective.

I'm glad that it looks like they're retconning the explanation of Nico's wand as being advanced technology that just seems like magic. With Doctor Strange and "Cloak & Dagger", it's pretty clear that magic does exist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So might as well just embrace that and have her magic wand be an actual magic wand. Interesting that when Nico goes "dark", her eyes have the same effect as Mads Mikkelsen's in Doctor Strange. Same darkness powering both?

Based on what the shapeshifter described, there are four Gibborim (which, if the show were strictly following the biblical meaning of the word, should be giants, but anyway...) who were part of the royal family. They were exiled, presumably for being evil murderous SOBs, and crash landed on Earth thousands of years ago. The Gibborim are apparently beings of pure light or energy, who require a host to take a corporeal form. This occurred in prehistoric times. Only the Magistrate was able to escape the buried crash. Over thousands of years, the Magistrate shepherded human development to bring things to a point where the technology would exist to extract the buried spaceship from the Earth, jumping from body to body as the old ones grew sickly. To facilitate this endgame, he took the body of an Australian surgeon named Jonah. As Jonah, he assembled Pride and used the sacrifices to maintain the same body for decades.

The events of the middle of the season caused the spaceship to be destroyed and the Jonah host to expire. But the Magistrate and, presumably, his wife and son and daughter, used the calamity to escape and take new hosts. The Magistrate took over Chase's dad, His wife took over Gert's mom, and his daughter took over Nico's mom. It is unknown who his son took over.

Only Karolina, because she is a human-Gibborim hybrid, has her own corporeal form, no host required. Her mother is pregnant again, presumably carrying a full sibling for Karolina and another human-Gibborim hybrid.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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As Marvel Television winds down, Hulu has released the trailer for the final season of "Runaways", which debuts three weeks from Friday:

Unfortunately, the "Cloak & Dagger" crossover was shot before that series got cancelled, so we probably won't get any resolution for their story.
 

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