Remember back at the end of episode 9 when Andy and Polaris destroyed the servers that controlled every mutant’s collar in prison, allowing them to fight back against the guards and escape? I was so excited for that moment and the implications it would have on the struggle between mutants and humankind, following the tense build up between the Inner Circle, Mutant Underground and the Purists. Unfortunately it feels like the show has plateaued since then, drifting along with a couple of middling filler episodes that has detracted from the series arc.
Thankfully ‘teMpted’ felt a lot more like the highs of The Gifted we’ve previously seen, thanks to a much more focused structure featuring three main story threads. It also helped that a lot of the main characters were brought together again, as the main ensemble has definitely felt very fractured this season. Oh and did I mention more Blink and Erg?! You can never go wrong with more of those characters!
First up we had Lauren trying to fight off the temptation of the dark side in the form of Andy (and the Cuckoos) appearing in her dreams through their connection. Anyone else think the Cuckoos are super creepy invading their consciousness like that?! Eventually Lauren can’t keep herself stay awake any longer and agrees to meet Andy the next day, leaving behind a note for Reed at the safe house. The Strucker father sees the same struggle and temptation that he faced when he was younger, so wants more than anything to help her, asking Thunderbird to help him track her down. Although the whole creepy music box storyline is a little weak, it was great to see Reed finally open up to Lauren and support her. Stephen Moyer and Natalie Alyn Lind are genuinely fantastic actors and it’s great to see them explore their bond further.
Back at the Inner Circle HQ and Lorna proves to be the worlds worst spy as she tries to find out the new recruit’s next targets. While exploring Max’s room, she finds blueprints to the Pentagon, the White House and a number of other high profile building on his laptop. But it doesn’t take long for Max to realise someone’s been in his room and he eventually puts two and two together, accusing Lorna. I really don’t think she’s going to be safe for much longer at the Inner Circle, especially considering the surprising and explosive cliffhanger! As much as I love Emma Dumont, this really was the weakest part of the episode. Come on The Gifted writers, please give our favourite green haired mutant more to do!
But the real highlight of the episode belonged to the Morlocks as Blink, Erg, Eclipse and Kate worked together to help save Glow from a gun shot wound following a raid that went awry. Following a brief flashback featuring Erg and his ex-girlfriend, we finally learnt that it was her that betrayed the mutant underground, which completely explains Erg’s dislike for humans. He begrudgingly teams up with Kate to help her manufacture a serum to transfuse blood from Eclipse to Glow, leading them back to the clinic and in a battle with the Purifiers. It was so good to see more of Morg’s impressive power in action, as well as Kate kicking ass! I absolutely loved seeing their relationship grow in this episode; to see two stubborn people genuinely have an impact on each other was really touching. When Erg painted an M on Caitlin’s face, it was genuinely one of the most touching scenes from this series! The best line from the episode award has to go to Kate for the fantastic: “I’m guessing you’re not a pharmacist AND a post-apocalyptic pirate”.
Overall ‘teMpted’ was a strong outing for the X-Men inspired series, helped in part by some fantastic performances, particularly from Amy Acker and Michael Luwoye. The mission to save Glow felt genuinely real and a lot like the comics the show is based on. Can we get more of the Morlocks and Blink please?! With only a couple of episodes left, I’m very intrigued to see what Reeva’s actual end game is – I really hope it pays off considering all of the build up we’ve had this season…