This recap of Netflix’s The Umbrella Academy Season 3, Episode 1, “Meet the Family,” contains spoilers.
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After saving the world twice, all our heroes want to do is return home for a little downtime. Unfortunately, time has been irreversibly changed and the Umbrella Academy mansion has now become Sparrow Academy. Season three introduces us to this all-new set of seven superheroes, each with their own specific and iconic powers. The ancient gang must battle their much-enhanced counterparts and prevent a possible third apocalypse from wiping out humanity. The first, “Meet the Family,” quickly establishes these seven sparrows and pits them against their distant cousins in a fun opener.
The Umbrella Academy season 3 episode 1 recap
The season begins with what looks like a recap of the Umbrella Academy’s origin story, but it’s actually the Sparrows. They are two very similar stories. On October 1, 1989, random women around the world who weren’t pregnant all gave birth at exactly the same time. Eccentric billionaire Sir Reginald Hargreeves raised as many of these children as he could, all with their own distinct skills. This new set of seven features Ben wielding tentacles (from previous seasons) and a floating cube called Christopher. I mean, who gave birth to this abomination – ouch!
A fight appears to be brewing between the warring factions, but a dance ensues instead. Both parties dance on “Free from all ties” in satisfactory synchronization. It’s a hilarious sequence in which Christopher the cube sprays glitter around the mansion and robotic maid Grace does the robot. This impromptu dance turns out to be a figment of Diego’s vivid imagination, a vision created by Sparrow #6, Jayme. Its extraordinary power consists of spitting a black liquid on its prey, which then induces a nightmarish vision or fantasy. She later hallucinates Five, where he kisses with his former model lover.
Inevitably, the two opposing gangs decide to fight for supremacy, which serves as a nice little introduction to viewers of the Sparrows and their powers. We all know Ben and Jayme’s skills by now, but let’s break down the rest of Brother Sparrow’s abilities. There’s Marcus, whose super-strength seems to match and possibly surpass Luther’s. Fei can summon and control birds while dressed as a secondary Matrix character. Alphonso, the disfigured blob, can reverse his wounds, transferring the pain onto his enemy instead. Sloane can manipulate objects and herself to levitate. And then finally, there’s Christopher, a purring robotic cube. During the fight, he shoots lightning bolts at Diego, but it only seems to tickle the knife-throwing rebel.
The sparrows seem to have the upper hand, and only the apocalyptic Vanya manages to cause any real damage. His last blast of seismic energy knocks out the starters, giving the Umbrella siblings time to safely escape and regroup. They are visibly hurt by Father Reginald’s rejection and book into the Obsidian Hotel to formulate a plan. Klaus’ old lair is a strange place, but it’s the perfect hideout for our displaced superheroes. As they adjust to their new accommodation, Diego’s lover, Lila, drops off their twelve-year-old son, Stanley, before leaving. The boys discuss the possibility of running into their doppelgangers.
Vanya sneaks out to make a deal with Marcus that night, with them agreeing that she won’t attack and humiliate the superhuman if he brings her the time-traveling briefcase they need. Marcus, who clearly fears Vanya’s powers, happily complies. Though when he enters the cellar to sweep away this lost item, he instead finds himself drawn into an angry red swirling vortex of doom. Robotic Mom Grace is mesmerized by this monstrosity, and Marcus follows suit, deciding to touch her. This monumental misstep sends a deadly shockwave through the local community, which vaporizes a pug and poor Marcus, his remains being sucked into this gruesome black hole.
This ends the entertaining opening episode of The Umbrella Academy, one filled with silly footage and more hilarious hijinks from its thrilling cast. A perfect setup for another season of apocalyptic mayhem.
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