The Gifted Episode 10 “eXploited” Review
By Emma Crow
While last week’s episode of The Gifted was exciting, but it was this week’s mid-season finale that really brought all the plot twists and emotions.
Episode 9 ended with Blink, Dreamer, and the Strucker children captured by Sentinel Services, and the stakes higher than ever.
We start of with our trusty flashback, of course. We are at a politician’s rally and he’s all “mutants are bad for America” etc. etc. Then, a wild Esme appears. She attempts to infiltrate the campaign, but something goes wrong. Voices shout for help in her mind, sending her running.
Back in the present, the whole squad is yelling at each other (what else is new). Polaris wants to go in hot to rescue their friends, but the Strucker parents are afraid that more bloodshed will only make things worse. John compromises between the two sides by sending out scouts to assess Trask facility’s defenses.
At Sentinel Services’ interrogation facility, Agent Turner and Dreamer come face to face for the first time since she scrambled his brains many moons ago. He tells her about the consequences he experienced (i.e. reliving the death of his child) and she tearfully apologizes, but Turner is stone cold.
Blink is sassy as ever during her interrogation (I love her). Dr. Campbell, aka Dr. Crazy (debuting a hideous new facial disfiguration courtesy of grandpa Strucker), wants the Strucker kids, and Agent Turner is like, “Sure, pal!”
Esme convinces the Strucker parents that it would be a great idea to have a chat with Agent Turner in order to convince him to take their kids out of the torture lab and put them into a regular old prison instead. Caitlin and Reed readily agree, and sneak out of the Mutant Underground compound, while Esme grins sinisterly.
Polaris and Marcos fight some more; Polaris is mad because the world sucks and the Strucker parents are dumb, but Marcos is like, “they are dumb humans. They don’t know any better.” This is true. But Polaris argues that “we can’t just give them a free pass because they are ignorant” which is also true.
Blink and Dreamer bond in jail. Dreamer is falling apart, but Blink is coming in clutch with a speech of hope and strength. She’s escaped from Sentinel Services once, she can do it again! (Did I mention how much I love her?)
The Strucker kids finally come face to face with the crazy doctor who obviously wants to harness their super combo gift. Andy and Lauren resist despite the shock collars, but then Dr. Campbell brings out Dreamer and Blink and threatens to shoot them if the Strucker kids don’t cooperate. Dreamer tells them to resist, so they do. In retaliation, Dr. Campbell shoots Dreamer! Honestly, it wasn’t as shocking as it could’ve been because of last week’s previews, but still it was very sad. I wish we had seen more of her in the past 10 episodes so this moment would have more emotional impact.
Dreamer’s death convinces the Strucker siblings to cooperate in order to save Blink. They clasp hands and unleash the full extent of their powers, nearly taking out the supposedly indestructible box the doctor put them in.
Back at the Mutant Underground, Esme tells Marcos and Polaris that Caitlin and Reed went to talk to Agent Turner and they are mad as hell. (She neglects to tell them that it was her idea… she is so shady! The question is, what is she up to? Who’s side is she on?) They decide that on the off chance that the Struckers succeed, they can attack the transport on its way from Trask labs to Sentinel Services prison.
The Struckers show up at Agent Turner and his wife’s house with a gun and that chat begins about as well as you would expect. The Strucker parents try to be reasonable, but Agent Turner isn’t ready to bend. Finally, Caitlin has to do all the heavy lifting (as usual) and whips out a wonderful speech in which she reminds Turner of when he came into her house with a gun and also that child torture/experimentation is wrong. They leave, and Mr. Turner was not moved, but Mrs. Turner is, asking, “what have you been doing in the name of our child?”
So finally Agent Turner realizes that he’s been acting somewhat unhinged recently.
At Trask labs, Dr. Campbell is feeling really good because the Strucker duo power blast gave him what he wanted (something science-y? nuclear power I think?) But then Agent Turner shows up because his wife forced him to grow a bit of a conscience and realize that experimentation on people is bad. He notices that Dreamer is missing and Dr. Campbell claims that there was an accident. See what you let happen, Agent Turner? He loads up Blink, the Strucker kids, and the other mutants onto a bus to bring them to jail.
Meanwhile, the Mutant Underground realizes that the Strucker parents succeeded against all odds and mobilize to attack the transport. Esme volunteers to scout ahead with Marcos, which we know is a BAD IDEA, but our cute little mutant babes are too trusting for their own good. The Strucker parents arrive at the Underground headquarters after almost everyone has already left and discover the lies that Esme has been spinning. They finally realize that something shady is about to go down, but they are too far away to do anything about it.
As soon as they are alone, Esme zaps Marcos with a taser and begins MIND CONTROLLING the soldiers. She tells them to turn off the mutant prisoners’ collars, and shoot each other and themselves. Esme is fearsome to behold as she singlehandedly takes down a whole army of Sentinel Services (except for Turner of course; that guy has 9 lives, I swear). Is she psychotic? yes. Is she also a badass? Hell yeah.
Now for the biggest plot twist of the evening, Esme’s two identical sisters step out of the bus with the other mutant prisoners and the three of them begin talking and mind controlling as one. It’s both creepy and awesome and way beyond my wildest predictions for how this episode would unfold!
And with that shocking twist, the episode ends. The next time we will see the mutants reunite will be in 3 weeks! Hopefully we will see the consequences of Dreamer’s death as well as find out what the Esme triplets will do next.