I'm not talking about just the upcoming TV show, I'm talking about as an overall concept for the MCU. Ever since Skye's reveal in the middle of Season 2 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the Inhumans have been acting as the X-Men of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This isn't a terrible idea, but with all that's said and done, should Marvel had gone a different route with this property?
While mostly everyone can agree that Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. did improve as the show continued, we can't ignore that it also started expanding more than we anticipated. Out of all the television projects connected with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. feels like the one that is most disconnected from everything else. Think about everything that has been going on in the show ever since the beginning of Season 3.
People all across New York started changing into Inhumans with super abilities due to the events of the Season 2 finale, and the Watch Dogs were formed to exterminate them because the group considers them freaks of nature. That's pretty huge to include in your universe, but we never hear about Inhuman or Watch Dog activity in Daredevil, Luke Cage or any of the other #MCU TV shows.
The Defenders take place in the same location as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and they can't even give a slight nod to the Watch Dogs taking to the streets with armed weapons and killing innocent people. That seems like something that Daredevil or Luke Cage would want to intervene in. The Inhumans were a big part of the Marvel Universe in the comic books, most of them being strange beings with amazing powers. These characters allowed Jack Kirby to really exercise his creative muscles, and yet the MCU doesn't seem interested in taking advantage of it.
Let's Look At The Upcoming TV Show
The first trailer of this show was weak. A show that boasts a high budget looks cheaper than other Marvel TV properties and, once again, Marvel is not taking full advantage on the #Inhumans property. At one point in the trailer, we see a shot of all the Inhumans on the moon together and it's really underwhelming how generic and uninteresting they look.
They look just like regular people with some cheap wardrobe on. It's almost as if Marvel/ABC lost their creativity when creating this show. Jack Kirby went all out with the oddness and nonsensical when creating each individual Inhuman and everybody loved it back in the day.
Some of Kirby's craziest designs included Stallior, the centaur Inhuman, Rootar, the Inhuman whose skin is made out of tree bark and Margoyle, the Inhuman who is literally a gargoyle. This show could have burst with some amazing ideas rooted in rich lore.
Was Putting Inhumans On Television The Wrong Move?
In a recent interview with Movie Pilot, Inhumans director Roel Reine revealed why the Inhumans movie was scrapped for a TV show:
"A few years ago, Marvel made this line-up and the Inhumans was there as a feature in 2019, but I know that they never developed it as a screenplay. They didn't take it seriously as a movie yet and when they were looking for a new TV show, they went to Inhumans because there are so many rich characters. Squeezing them into 2 hours would be shameful. That's kind of why they went for TV."
Unfortunately, the problem with putting the Inhumans on TV might be its budget. The first trailer boasts this show had a big budget behind it, with it being shot in IMAX, but it seems that the big budget still isn't enough. The production looks to rival that of both #AgentsofSHIELD and Agent Carter and, as mentioned above, none of the Inhumans in the trailer look like those from the original comic books.
One of the bigger problems with this might be showrunner Scott Buck, who is clearly on a victory lap after his run on Iron Fist. It seems like the problems we saw with Iron Fist are mirroring the problems of Inhumans, namely that we're not seeing enough. Iron Fist is a hero that lived in a mystical city, got his powers from punching a dragon and could do so much more than concentrate chi to his fist. We didn't see a dragon, a mystical city or much of Iron Fist's powers.
Buck even revealed that not a lot of the budget was going towards bringing the Inhumans' powers to life, which is especially worrisome. That's the biggest problem with the Inhumans show: We're seeing too little. The city of Attilan looks generic, grey and dull, while all the Inhumans are just normal-looking people. If this were still being made into a movie, there could have been a bigger budget to allow #Marvel Studios to go crazy with Inhuman designs. Unfortunately, we're not going to see that anytime soon and all we can do is hope for the best.
What Is The Best We Can Hope For With The Inhumans?
While the pilot episode was not well-received, we do have to remember that it's only the first episode of the series and there is still room for improvement as the show goes on, much like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. The story could actually go to some interesting places. Two brothers are forced to fight against each other, the evil brother has feelings for his brother's queen and each character has an understandable viewpoint.
Black Bolt feels that humans would not accept them as they are on Earth, while Maximus feels that they need to be free from their prison on the moon and live on Earth (possibly to rule over the humans). While a lot of the budget clearly did not go to makeup or special effects, some of it might be going to talented writers that could save this show from the brink of extinction.
All we can hope for is a miracle with this show because, as it goes right now, the Inhumans have an expiration date that is inching closer and closer.
What do you think about the Inhumans involvement with the MCU?