Marvel’s Inhumans: The First Chapter Review

Jordan Samuel Jordan Samuel
Expert Contributor
September 21st, 2017

Film Critic and Writer for ComiConverse.com, the Founder and co-host of the official Nerdcast Network Podcast

Marvel’s Inhumans (2017) is the latest attempt at kickstarting another TV franchise, with various marketing gimmicks in place to make sure ABC have one hot new IP. But does it have the royal blood?

Marvel’s Inhumans: The First Chapter Review   

Marvel’s Inhumans explores the never-before-told epic adventure of the Royal Family of Inhumans including Black Bolt, the enigmatic, commanding King of the Inhumans, with a voice so powerful that the slightest whisper can destroy a city. After the Royal Family of Inhumans is splintered by a military coup, they barely escape to Hawaii where their surprising interactions with the lush world and humanity around them may prove to not only save them but Earth itself.

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Credit: Marvel

Marvel has changed so much in the last couple years, with various heroes getting their big screen adaptations. Marvel’s television output has been a mixed bag with the Netflix series pushing forward in the quality department, rivaling the big budget movies. After successes in both Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the underrated Agent Carter brings the canceled movie project into a new format.

Marvel and ABC are doing something different with Inhuman’s (2017), with two episodes airing in one short lived IMAX release and the full series continuing on TV September 29th. A strange change, to this MCU arena pushing these smaller characters into a bigger audience.

The project has been in development since 2011, with Marvel Studios pushing Inhumans (2017 as the next signature franchise in their cinematic universe plans, before the now infamous Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017) deal with Sony Pictures. It changed identities throughout the limbo stages forming a smaller scale TV program, bringing royal families forward in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe.

Credit: Marvel

Many fans were confused with the decision after Disney became adamant on bringing Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's 1960 team Inhumans into a new movie franchise: with the Royal Family being important in future stages of the MCU.  I was one of these people, in the beginning only due to the perfect IP being adapted in the cinematic standard. How could it possibly work in the TV format? but after realizing how good Marvel's Netflix shows have been up until Iron Fist, maybe we’re going to get a faithful adaptation

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Iron Fist showrunner Scott Buck (Dexter) helms the royal family first onscreen appearance but after his failure in delivering a glowing Iron Fist into the Netflix molds, eyes are rolling at the thought of Inhumans (2017) in his hands.

Early buzz for Marvel's latest TV outing, Inhumans has painfully been obvious with social media being constantly harsh on the debut trailer. The promotional material has been mediocre with the company hiding any information on the upcoming project perhaps due to the embarrassing consequences, with pilot director Roel Reiné (Blood Drive) apologizing for marketing footage.

Due to constant negativity, it feels like Marvel is sending out the show for an early death, with the IMAX release being shortened to one week. It’s rather disappointing after their exciting promises years ago- for another surprise series in their hands. Is the internet, right? Let's forget about the terrible marketing and check out these pilot episodes with Jordan Samuel

Credit: Marvel

I’ve always hated delivering awful news with comic book projects but Inhumans (2017) is just bad in all avenues with a mediocre TV movie feel throughout these first two episodes, despite gorgeous set designs at points in IMAX 2D. Director Roel Reine (Blood Drive) cannot understand how to fully utilize an obscure Marvel comic book on screen, with characters hollow motivations and unfriendly attitude limiting TV audiences from caring about this royal family.

Despite loads of cash being thrown around in Hawaiian locations and decent CGI worlds (terrible Medusa wig might stand out). I could not shake the feeling of the whole project being pointless as it doesn’t bring anything into the MCU.

Story themes at Inhumans (2017) center are rather compelling, as the ideas of being mutated almost equals the religion in a society. Scott Buck's Inhuman (2017) script is painfully written with shallow motives and connections between the family, limiting needed development to make audiences care about these adventures. Relying a bit too heavy, on a boring and generic inner circle dispute which forms into a civil war between our frankly boring set of heroes.

Credit: Marvel

During these first two episodes, nothing happens with cringe worthy dialogue, been thrown around for the majority runtime. Medusa (Serinda Swan), is terrible not only for the wig, just her bland and amateur performance: which ends with a pointless shave sequence screwing up the characters hair power.

Black Bolt (Anson Mount) ends up being a muted individual who stares at things for hours on end; spitting in the face of hardcore inhuman fans. The writers somehow make the strangest man in comic book history, just evaporate on screen with his frown reminding me of spending the night with diarrhea.

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Iwan Rhedon (Game of Thrones) is Black Bolt’s brother Maximus, who supports the Attilan people and wants to rule over his people. Now I wanted to love this character but the cockiness and frankly terrible acting from the actor push him into Loki rip-off status, perhaps recasting the role could have prevented issues.

Credit: Marvel

Character wise I don’t recommend Inhuman’s (2017) as these so, called "Mutants" feel like a painful attempt at X-Men in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as each role just feeling generic and uninspired. Making the Inhuman build up from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. a big waste of valuable resources and time, despite good ideas the execution is not worthy of the Marvel banner.

Marvel's Inhumans (2017) is a hot mess scrambling to make us care about the royal family without building towards a bigger picture, despite looking good in IMAX the show is completely hollow at the core. A testament of development hell everything about these two-pilot episodes, yell "Lets, just get this out the hot kitchen!" without the right sauce. Perhaps leaving our Inhumans (2017) in the pile of canceled superhero projects, would have been for the better? Let’s hope the Marvel TV division can jump back.

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