I'm not sure what the significance of the title is. Maybe it's an old comic book title? There's a lot of dividing, which is kind of irritating. But no real conquering. At least no more than last week.

Let's recap "Divide and Conquer". In the minor plots, Gorgon and his ragtag army of soldiers-turned-surfers-turned-soldiers (huh?) go up against Auran and her "backup". Said backup being more Inhumans with weaponized abilities. Most of them are pretty non-descript: there's Locus, who is told to hold back. A snake guy, an electrical guy, Flora who can control plants, Auran who heals fast. And Mordis, who is described as perhaps the most powerful Inhuman after Black Bolt and can fire Cyclops-=like energy blasts from his eyes. He's also been held prisoner on Attilan and is working for Maxmius in return for his freedom. And seems to have a sense of humor.

The two sides fight, and each one scores a casualty. Gorgon orders a retreat (after fighting Auran to a standstill), and that's the end of that. No sign of Triton.

Oh, and the unnamed head surfer talks about honoring their king by fighting for Gorgon and his king. so I guess that's why the set it in Hawaii.

After chatting with an ATM (she sees people using ATMs, but not people inserting cards?), Medusa breaks into some guy's expensive house, takes some clothes (yay, breaking & entering!), and sees a newspaper article about Black Bolt's traffic incident. I guess there's something in the article about Black Bolt going to prison, because Medusa calls a cab and goes there. She understands cabs but not ATMs?

Karnak stumbles into three ganja farmers who are squatting on public land. I think. The unnamed female leader takes pity on him and he asks to stay with them. Karnak at least displays a little bit of personality, wondering where his place is in the Royal Family now that he's lost his powers, whatever they are.

Crystal agrees to rattle off Maximus' speech to the Genetic Council, but goes off-script. She runs off to find Lockjaw, who is... exactly where she thinks he is. Black Bolt's containment chamber. Apparently they don't have locks, because she just walks in, shocks Lockjaw awake, and has him teleport her to Earth. Where he passes out and gets hit by a buggy. Crystal really has horrible luck, but what little we see of the driver suggests that he's cute. So romance ahoy!

Louise, who is irritatingly Felicity Smoak-ish, camps outside the prison.

In the main plot, Dr. Evan Declan hears about Black Bolt's traffic incident. While Evan heads to Hawaii, he calls a prisoner, Sammy. It turns out Sammy is a nu-Inhuman, and bonds with Black Bolt. There's an annoying head guard named Rivera, and Captain Pena who is in charge is no bundle of joy, either. A riot eventually breaks out, Sammy leads Black Bolt out, and Evan arrives in a helicopter in time to take them away just as Medusa arrives, sees her husband flies off, draws a gun on Louise, and tells her to follow that helicopter! So apparently Medusa doesn't know how cars and helicopters work. But cabs, no problem.

And not only does Sammy tie into Agents of SHIELD with being a Terragenesis victim and assuming that Black Bolt is another one. But he actually has a personality. He's more interesting than most of the main cast.

We also got a few flashbacks to tell us stuff that we already knew. Like Maximus wanting to be king from an early age. And that Black Bolt's voice can destroy Attilan. And that Maximus doesn't have Inhuman powers but is a normal human.

"Divide and Conquer" was... a little better than the two-hour TV premiere. There were a couple of action scenes, and I liked Black Bolt a bit better. They gave him some bits like his telling Rivera to wait a moment while he made his chess move, and fighting his way through the prison guards near the end. They also avoided all the "humans make me sick-like dialogue, and stuck primarily to the plot of the Royal Family stranded on Earth.

I also liked the introduction of the new Inhumans, like Mordis and Flora. Even if it was hard to make out what Mordis was saying half the time--thanks, closed captioning!

On the other hand, there still seems to be a dichotomy between them wanting to focus on Black Bolt and having an ensemble cast. Which made the Karnak plot to some degree a little weak. Why is he there, again? I like Ken Leung, and Karnak probably had the most character development this week. Gorgon seems to be there mostly to provide fight scenes with superpowers. Medusa, they can't seem to decide on.

Isabelle Cornish still isn't doing anything for me, which makes Maximus' obsession with bringing her over to his side a bit odd. She doesn't seem that valuable to Team Maximus, except maybe as another Inhuman Hunter for Auran. Like she wasn't going to do exactly what she did: denounce Maximus instead of praise him and then run away. Granted, maybe that was part of Maximus' plan, or his backup plan if she didn't play along. But then why is the Genetic Council applauding Maximus' subsequent anti-royalty speech?

Also, Iwan Rheon seems a bit… subdued. I get that they don't want to him turn him into an out-and-out villain, at least publicly. And he does have a kind of Loki vibe to Black Bolt's Thor. But he seems to have an Inhuman power to keep himself half-asleep most of the time.

So overall, "D&C" was an improvement over the premiere as they settled into their groove. It's not great superhero TV, but it's... okay.

But that's just my opinion, I could be wrong. What do you think?
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Comments (1)
Oct 13, 2017
I said this elsewhere, Iwan said in an interview he was trying hard to make sure Maximus isn't Ramsey Bolton. That's probably why he is so toned down.

I also don't get the insistence of not mentioning Agents of Shield. Obviously they are assuming the audience is familiar with it - since they barely explained the concept of Inhumans.
Yet they really go out of their way not to say anything about it. Plus, didn't the previous season finale of Shield shows Colton in space?

I know the Marvel movies ignores the show and they have a one sided relationship, but now they have a one sided relationship with this show?
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