‘The Gifted’ 1×03 Review: Aurora Borealis

Tonight The Gifted took an important step forward, a necessary step if they were going to make this ragtag group of people a team, much less a family. And yet, a part of me – for all that I genuinely like everyone on this show – doesn’t really care about anything other than my new ship.

Give me Polaris and Eclipse. Give me Lorna and Marcos. Give me nothing else.

Did you see the sparks – and I’m not just talking about the literal ones? And the pain in both of their eyes as they faced the possibility of something bad happening to the person they love? Did you see it? Did you feel the pain?

I did.

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Welcome to shipping. It’s heaven and it’s hell.

As for the rest, it just continues to move along at the same sorta slow and yet somehow not completely annoying pace. At some point, I assume things will pick up – this is a short season after all. But, for now, I’m just gonna sit here and enjoy the calm before the storm and completely ignore that shit with Blink and Thurnderbird because that’s just a one-off, right? The memories can be erased, right? I can drown myself in gifs and fanfic, RIGHT?

The answer better be yes.

So let’s discuss the betrayals, the messages and the WTF in “eXodus”:

STRUCKERS VS. COMMON SENSE

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No one was really thinking straight in this episode of The Gifted, and if your last name was Strucker, it’s like you were especially susceptible to the bug of stupidity. Starting with Reed, who I thought had a plan but was actually just considering going with whatever Agent Cody Bell wanted him to do, and then, OF COURSE, had a crisis of conscience in the worst possible moment, because – and that’s the whole point of the backstory we got last week – he actually HAS a conscience.




And that’s without touching on Caitlin, who went from the savviest to the most naïve one in the space of a few days. And, I sorta get it, I do, we’re all blind when it comes to our family, and her brother wasn’t really that bad, in the grand scheme of things. But the thing she didn’t get, not till the end of the episode, at least, is that she might not be a mutant, but she’s mutant adjacent. And the world doesn’t make distinctions, not anymore.

She can’t play both sides. And she’s already picked hers.

Plus, there’s, of course, Andy, who could probably use the training just as much as Blink because he’s got too much powers and too many feelings and just no way to channel them into something constructive. Same goes with Lauren, who didn’t exactly do much this episode other than go along with whatever idiocy her mother and brother were doing.

She could help. They could help. They just need to learn how. And you’ve got like 20 extras walking around, so how about we give one of them a speaking role and find these kids something to do?

WE HAVE TO STICK TOGETHER

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Once again, the show is not shy about shoving the political undertones at you, and in this hour, the message that comes through the clearest is a message of unity. The world is a scary place. There’s a lot of bad things out there, and bad people too. And sometimes, the only way we can fight that is by making the stupid but right decision, by saying no, I won’t be contributing to this, even if it benefits me.

I will do the right thing even when it’s hard.

Reed Strucker did the right thing, even if it was hard. Caitlin’s brother did the right thing, even if it was hard. And we should all do the right thing every day, in the face of overwhelming obstacles, in the face of people who will ask us to look the other way. We should do the right thing. We should stick together. And we should protect each other, when it’s necessary.

That’s, after all, what makes us humans. Funny how a show about mutants is trying to teach us about humanity.

WHAT WORKS, WHAT DOESN’T AND WHAT’S COMING NEXT

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I have enjoyed the show so far. I think it’s lost a bit of steam, but all in all, I find most characters engaging and I don’t feel an urgent need to drop the show and start watching something else. BUT – and here’s the rub, I’m not in love with this show, not yet. And you could say it’s early, and it is, except this season only has 10 episodes. So, by those standards, it’s now or never.

Some things do work, however, and they work GREAT. Polaris, for example, steals every second she’s on screen. Eclipse could have been obnoxious, bossy and a general pain in the ass and instead he’s like the annoying brother you still can’t help but love. And the Struckers, when they’re not making bonehead decisions, can elicit emotion in us. But the show needs to manage all of that at the same time, it needs to click on all cylinders, and it needs to do it soon.

And it needs to NOT CONTINUE WITH THAT SHIT WITH BLINK AND THUNDERBIRD. No. I do not want it. No one wants it. YOU TOOK HER CONSENT AWAY. And even if he’s a good guy and is not going to “take advantage,” that’s just nasty. Why did you need to go that way? Couldn’t you just accelerate her training? Come up with a memory that would help? Have the people with powers actually save themselves? Something? ANYTHING?

How can you expect us to actually, at some point in the future, ever ship this? I don’t get it. I really, really don’t.

So, let’s hope it can be fixed and that you can, at the very least, address how gross it was – is.

Not much indication one way or another in the trailer , and it looks like we’re in for a jailbreak next episode. To which I can only say HALLELUJAH and give me Stephen Moyer + Emma Dumont, kthanx.

It’s gonna be fun. That is, if I can still find this show fun. Ball’s in your court, The Gifted. BALL IS IN YOUR COURT. Fix your mess.

Other things to note:

  • If together you make aurora borealis, you’re just meant to be. Own it.
  • Eclaris is the shipname, according to Emma Dumont.
  • And you know that where Emma leads, I shall follow. SO ECLARIS IT IS.
  • The token thing seems like silly sentimental points to score, but I’ve been there. It spoke to me.
  • “You can shove that deal up your ass,” is the right sentiment expressed at just the wrong time, Reed.
  • And Lauren couldn’t put up a shield because? When you introduce powers, you can’t just hope we forget these characters have powers when it’s convenient.
  • THE MORAL IMPLICATIONS OF THAT FREAKING LOVE TRIANGLE. O.M.F.G. I just can’t get over it.
  • Marcos and Caitlin need to get matching BFF bracelets.
  • Sure bad guys, put Reed and Lorna together. LIKE THAT MAKES SENSE.

The Gifted airs Mondays at 9/8c on FOX.



Lissete Lanuza Sáenz

Senior Managing Editor

Lawyer. Dreamer. Geek. Eternal optimist. Fangirl since the dawn of time. Hates the color yellow, olives and cigarettes. Has a recurring nightmare where she’s forced to choose between sports and books. Falls in love with fictional characters.

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