Like it did with The Handmaid’s Tale, Hulu dropped the first three episodes of Marvel’s Runaways at once, to get us hooked, and are now releasing episodes week by week. But I was hooked from the very first press release. All they had to say was “Hey, Runaways is now a TV show” and I was in, no questions asked. The first three episodes serve as a solid introduction to both our naive teens and our villainous parents.
First of all, this is different to the Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona comics. Sure, it has the same characters and main plot points, but Runaways the TV show is more a product of its creator team, Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage (The O.C, Gossip Girl).
So far it’s more teen-drama than superhero show. We’ve seen mystical weirdness and hints at powers but for now, at least, it’s just a side plate to the main meal. As for the tone, there’s only nods to Vaughan’s well known comedic banter. It’s more self-serious but it still has heart. And the parents get a much larger role than in the comics.
It’s interesting that Brian K. Vaughan is only serving as an “Executive Consultant” here, but with what happened with Under The Dome I can understand his reluctance. Besides, he’s busy enough as it is with Saga and the dozen other comics he’s working on. Oh, and in 2008 he tried to get it made into a Marvel film, but then The Avengers became a bit of a thing.
It’s a lot slower moving as well. By the end of the three episodes, our kids still haven’t “run away”. I’m wondering how much the show will change once they do. They do have to run away at some point right? It’s in the name of the show! There are a lot of characters to follow; six kids and ten parents. So perhaps it’s a good thing the plot is taking its time while we get to know our main players.
So far this is better than anything Netflix has put out Marvel-wise. Please don’t fall into the same traps!
Marvel’s Runaways: Season One
21 November 2017
S01E01 “Reunion”, S01E02 “Rewind”, S01E03 “Destiny”