Friday, November 10, 2017

Countdown To Boredom: ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" Ends Inhumans Season 1.

The Good: The scene with Maximus and Medusa is decent
The Bad: Most of the performances, Very basic plot, Almost no genuine character development, Mediocre special effects, Derivative theme
The Basics: Inhumans ends its first season with ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt," with is a pretty lackluster ending for the show.

Season finales for any show is a big deal, but in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, season finales are especially high stakes. For shows like Inhumans, it all comes down to the season finale to see if the viewer was justified in giving the eight-episode season any attention at all. ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" ends the first season of Inhumans and it is hard to believe that it would be enough to win the show a second season.

". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" follows on the events of "Havoc In The Hidden Land" (reviewed here!) and, as one might expect from that episode, the season finale brings a direct conflict between Maximus and Black Bolt. Maximus has built a failsafe into Attilan and Gorgon as been resurrected as, essentially, a zombie, so the stakes in ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" start high.

Opening on Attilan, Maximus informs Black Bolt and his team exactly what kind of failsafe he has built into Attilan. Maximus will destroy Attilan if his handprint is not scanned into a specific scanner. Black Bolt prepares a last resort; evacuate Attilan in case Maximus cannot get to the scanner. Medusa teleports to Earth to appeal to Louise, while the resurrected Gorgon attacks Dr. Declan. When Gorgon is captured, he is put into the room designed to contain Black Bolt, where Karnak is already imprisoned. The two break out as Crystal appeals to Eldrac for aid in getting the Inhumans off the moon.

On Earth, Medusa requests help from Louise and her employer for a place that might be able to accept 1400 refugees from Attilan. Before returning to the moon, Medusa entrusts Louise with the terrigen crystals from Attilan. While Karnak, Gorgon and Triton work to save Attilan, Black Bolt arrives to discover Gorgon alive. Using Auran as an intermediary, Medusa meets with Maximus as the countdown ticks toward the destruction of Attilan.

The acting in ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" is fairly stiff. Isabelle Cornish is especially stiff as Crystal; learning that Attilan is in jeopardy, Crystal is strangely nonchalant when Medusa asks for her help. Similarly, when Crystal implores Eldrac for help, there is a distinct lack of urgency in Cornish's performance.

Even in ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt," Maximus has moments where he makes some sense. He makes an appeal to Triton that Black Bolt is his enemy by pointing out that Black Bolt keeps the water-based Inhuman on the moon. Maximus is motivated further in the finale by the idea that his brother had previously promised him the throne. In fact, the idea that Maximus has learned Black Bolt's sign language illustrates that Maximus has long been more interested in his brother than the other way around. Arguably the most clever aspect of ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" is the idea that Maximus lacks the technical knowledge to effectively jeopardize and later save Attilan.

The resurrection of Gorgon is treated very erratically. During some moments, Gorgon appears cognizant and sane, while others he appears just a mindless, violent, thug. The contradictions in his character seems more plot-convenient than at all organic.

Inhumans began with potential for complexity and Shakespearean-level drama, but it quickly fell from that. ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" lacks any of that complexity or character-subtlety. Instead, ". . . And Finally: Black Bolt" bludgeons its way toward a conclusion for Inhumans that does not invite the viewer to get excited about any future appearances by any of the characters.

For other Marvel Cinematic Universe finale episodes, please check out my reviews of:
"The Defenders" - The Defenders
"World's End"- Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.
"Hollywood Ending" - Agent Carter

[Knowing that single episodes are an inefficient way to get episodes, it's worth looking into Marvel's Inhumans - The Complete First Season, which is also a better economical choice than buying individual episodes. Read my review of the premiere season of Inhumans here!


For other television reviews, please visit my Television Review Index Page for an organized listing!

© 2017 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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