The Gifted season 2, episode 12 review: hoMe


The Gifted escalates the stakes considerably in “hoMe.”

The Gifted is nearing the homestretch of its sophomore campaign, and episode 12, titled “hoMe,” began to bring the pace back to breakneck speed with one of the best chapters this season.

When the show returned from midseason break, in “eneMy of My eneMy” everyone was focused on rescuing John Proudstar/Thunderbird (Blair Redford) from the Purifier group now led by Jace Turner (Coby Bell). This meant a brief reunion for Inner Circle members Lorna Dane/Polaris (Emma Dumont) and Andy Strucker (Percy Hynes White) with their old teammates in the Atlanta Mutant Underground.

In last week’s “meMento,” Lauren Strucker’s (Natalie Alyn Lind) powers and attitude grew far more aggressive as she researched her family history. Also, Polaris and Marcos Diaz/Eclipse (Sean Teale) discovered that Reeva Payge (Grace Byers) and Benedict Ryan (Peter Gallagher) are working together.

In other plot threads, Turner covered up a colleague’s murder of an innocent teen, Morlock leader Erg (Michael Luwoye) agreed to help the Underground for a mysterious price, and Philadelphia lawyer Evangeline Whedon (Erinn Ruth) has called together a meeting of the leaders of the remaining Underground chapters around the country fro a war council.

Road trip, anyone?

The episode’s title played with the idea of what “home” was in about five or six different ways, and the most obvious was with Lauren’s and Caitlin’s (Amy Acker) storyline this week. They went back to Atlanta to see if Caitlin’s brother Danny could help them again, since he has Homeland Security connections. Or rather, had.

He is unable to help them, instead setting them up for a Sentinel Services ambush at a high school softball field. They barely escape, thanks to Lauren’s energy discs carving up several Sentinel Humvees.

Lauren began translating the letter she found in the music box into English, learning what Andreas had written so long ago. Back at the apartment, Reed found the letter and finished translating it, which caused his powers to flare up again – he’s quickly running out of the deactivation serum. Also, as a kid Reed was just as transfixed by the music box as Lauren is, until Otto forcefully told him to leave it alone.

Who – and how much – to trust?

Back at the Inner Circle, Andy had another shared dream with Lauren, and this time they fought, one of her energy discs giving him a nosebleed that woke him up with a yelp. The Frosts (Skyler Samuels) rush in, concerned, and when they learn about the shared dreams begin to press him to allow them to access Lauren through his mind.

Andy talks it over with Polaris, asking what she’d do if Marcos could be convinced to change sides. She explains that she doesn’t think that’s possible, even for the Frosts.

Meanwhile, she’s spying on the new recruits, trying to gain intel on their missions from the talkative dude Max, ignoring the Frosts’ and Sage’s (Hayley Lovitt) advice to put a damper on her curiosity.

Privately, the Frosts argue among themselves, reaching the conclusion that either Lauren will join them, or she will die, and use the threat of force on his family members to convince Andy to comply.

Why is it called the Underground?

Thunderbird, Eclipse and Clarice Fong/Blink (Jamie Chung) meet with Evangeline just before the meeting, which is essentially the national leaders of the Underground, given the state of the chapters at the moment. Evangeline determines that they need Erg’s help, sending the three of them to go pick him up.

On their way, Erg explains exactly how she got him to come – blackmail, as she knew the locations of the Morlocks’ sewers. They founded the Underground together, but following the betrayal of a human ally after 7/15 that caused the deaths of many mutants, they differed sharply on how to approach human relations, with Erg leading his group of separatists into a completely closed-off existence.

The new IC recruits’ mission was assassinate Evangeline, and they’re successful – Lorna’s warning came just a bit too late. All the other leaders were dead as well from the building’s explosion, which causes Erg and Thunderbird to get into a fight.

Seeing that their beliefs about what actions need to be taken to protect mutantkind will never be able to be compromised, Blink breaks up with Thunderbird and joins the Morlocks.

Where things currently stand

Eclipse tells Polaris about their failure while Caitlin takes note of Reed’s increased serum use. She and Lauren decide not to mention their Atlanta adventure in too much detail to keep his stress level down.

Blink tries to adjust to life in the sewers, while Thunderbird seeks consolation from Zingo the Border Collie, and the Frosts begin their attempt to persuade Lauren to join them as the episode ends.

Mutant miscellany

  • “Actually, I couldn’t stand her,” Polaris says after learning of Evangeline’s death. “I never liked lawyers. Or dragons. But she saved me.”
  • It probably isn’t important, but it is interesting to note that chapters at the national meeting included Cleveland, Newark and Richmond. Others that existed at one point included Baltimore (led by Shatter) and Chattanooga (where Wes was stationed).
  • The flashback was to Blink’s past tonight, 14 years ago at her foster parents while growing up in Gainesville. Her foster dad was an abusive alcoholic, and her foster sister Lily died while standing up to him to let the other kids escape. “She was the bravest person I’ve ever known,” she explains to Thunderbird.
  • While explaining Erg’s energy absorption and redirection abilities: “Essentially, you punched yourself,” Blink says matter-of-factly. Thunderbird’s stunned expression at realizing his own power was pretty funny.
  • After leaving, she’s talking to Erg about standing up for what you believe in, even when the sacrifices are harsh: “I just didn’t think bravery would feel this crappy.”
  • It was nice to see Lauren and Caitlin getting along for once. Also, apparently back in the day Caitlin was the Tyra Collette of her high school (essentially the bad girl, for those who haven’t watched Friday Night Lights.)

Next. X-Force movie is dead, which might not be a bad thing. dark

The Gifted returns next week with episode 13, titled “teMpted,” at 9 p.m. ET on Tuesday, January 22 on Fox. Based on the end-credits trailer, Lauren is recruited by the Frosts and the new Inner Circle assassins aim for the White House.