Title: The Gifted: “boXed in”
Air Date: October 30th, 2017
Genre: Science Fiction, Action, Thriller, Adventure
In the fifth episode of The Gifted, “boXed in”, the Mutant Underground is faced with some new challenges after freeing Polaris and Reed from the Sentinal Services in the fourth episode. The Underground must decide what to do with Reed once they discover that he was previously working with the Sentinal Services, as Tex angrily reveals to the others. Then, after Polaris and Eclipse capture Jace, there is the question of what to do with him and how they can pry some essential information on Pulse out of him.
“boXed in” had its ups and its downs but ended up successfully moving the characters and story forward as it intended. The episode did this most effectively in the character of Jace Turner, the Sentinal Services agent involved with the Mutant Underground case. In previous episodes, he gave you the information needed to understand his motives for hunting down mutants: the July 15 incident in Dallas, Texas. In this week’s episode, you were able to see these events unfold. His character developed a lot more because of it; even Polaris and Eclipse are taken aback by his story when they were trying to get information out of him.
Reed’s return to his family provoked an emotional response, one that surprised me because the show is only five episodes deep. I thought that that was mainly due to the writer’s focus on family and togetherness in the Strucker family, and the bond that’ll never tear them apart. Just seeing the responses from Lauren and Andy as Reed strengthened the theme even more, especially when comparing it to the family of the Mutant Underground and how the Strucker’s must find their place within them, a family separate from their own.
I thought that Amy Acker’s performance was exceptional this week when comparing it to previous weeks. I’m not saying that she has been bad in the previous episodes, just that in this week’s episode of The Gifted she had an extra something to help her performance stand out. For example, in the scene when Kate was talking to Reed about him leaving to lure the Sentinal Services away from their base. Everything about her acting in that scene portrayed the emotions her character was feeling in a successful manner.
Eclipse told Polaris that he knew about the baby. Their reactions to realizing that they were going to be parents were excellently done. Not so much because they really showed how any parent would react, but because they realistically portrayed a situation in which people like the Sentinal Services thought wasn’t possible. Those people only think mutants to be dangerous because of the July 15 incident, but, in that scene, you saw that mutants aren’t much different than humans: they both can be parents, they both can be treated poorly (as seen with Jace’s interrogation).
A scene that I didn’t like at all was the confrontation between Blink and Dreamer. Although I can understand the anger that Blink feels in that situation, I just didn’t see why she wouldn’t take Dreamer up on her offer of getting rid of the memory. Blink even stated that now she had to live with the memory of loving someone she barely knows, someone that doesn’t feel the same about her. She was angry, I get that, but I don’t think to have Dreamer keep her distance will help the memory fade. She’s the only one who can remove it, after all. I feel like Blink’s emotions were muddled in that scene, her intentions of the memory with John unclear. I couldn’t tell if she wanted to keep it for some crazy reason or what. I hope that that’s cleared up before the end of the season, as it’s a gaping hole in Blink’s development at the moment.
“boXed in” was another successful outing for The Gifted. I thought the performance by Amy Acker and Jace Turner’s development over the course of the episode made for a gripping episode, especially when putting both of those elements into the context of the story. I also noticed something comparable to a Cyclops or Havok blast during the July 15 incident. That makes me wonder: will one or both of these characters make an appearance in some capacity? Or was it a mutant with a similar looking power? The mystery surrounding the incident suggests someone important lurking in the shadows.
Verdict: “boXed in” presents you with some interesting concepts to think on, all while doing successfully doing its job in helping develop Jace Turner’s character. An excellent performance from Amy Acker steals the show as she nails the role of Mutant Underground doctor. Blink’s confrontation with Dreamer could’ve been done in a less muddling way, though.
- Amy Acker's performance
- Jace Tuner's development
- Emotional return for Reed
- Polaris' pregnancy showing the similarities between humans and mutants
- Blink's confrontation with Dreamer