The Umbrella Academy S1 Review

The Umbrella Academy is Netflix’s newest foray into the comic book world after the, disappointing announcement, of the cancellation of their contribution to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

This high budgeted series, based on the dark horse comic by Gerald Way, starts in 1989 with the intriguing premise of 43 woman around the world giving birth on the same day, each of which began the day not even pregnant.

Seven of these children are adopted by, billionaire industrialist, Sir Reginald Hargreeves. Each child exhibits unique abilities which Hargreeves wants to harness as he has a firm belief that the children will someday save the world. He trains them in his own home school environment, for which the series gets its name, “The Umbrella Academy.”

Years later we are reintroduced to the adult versions of these characters as they each learn of their adopted father’s untimely death and this dysfunctional family is brought together once again.

This blend of quirky, violent, superhero fun is delightful in it’s unusual blend of interesting characters. With strong performances from the entire cast and with more than a few stylistic similarities to AMC’s Preacher series this unusual series is quite engaging and a compelling watch.

If there was some complaints, that could be made from this impressive series, it is that the story seems somewhat derivative and predictable. Whilst the plot seems to head in a somewhat predictable direction it is never dull and always remains enjoyable as we spend time with these exciting and eccentric characters.

Behind the scenes the show is also commendable where the writing, production design, sound design and cinematography are all extremely well executed.

The visual effects are impressive for a television series and punches very high with a full CGI ape character that is realized almost to perfection. Unfortunately in the later episodes some CGI is a little underwhelming as the set pieces get larger in scale.

As a blend between Preacher and Watchman this series is exciting, original and will almost have you asking “Will we really miss Marvel on Netflix?”

4.5 out of 5 Birds from me – Jason

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