[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for The Umbrella Academy Season 3 Episodes 4-7, “Kugelblitz,” “Kindest Cut,” “Marigold,” and “Auf Wedersehen.”]
Yes, Harlan is really back (Callum Keith Rennie).
Viktor (Elliot Page) is shocked to learn that the child he saved in the previous timeline has grown up now – and, thanks to that save, he now also has a version of Viktor’s powers. Thing is, Harlan can’t quite control them…and that creates a major twist in the middle of The Umbrella Academy Season 3. How’s it going? Keep reading to find out.
With the deaths of two sparrows, the terms of the deal changed. The Sparrows are now demanding that the Umbrella Academy hand over Harlan, as they think they are working with him (they don’t, but Viktor might as well). Predictably, this causes many feuds between the Umbrellas, as Viktor won’t allow them to hand over Harlan. “You wanted to be on the team,” Five (Aidan Gallagher) tells his brother. “It is what it is.”
Harlan conflict aside, a shocking moment comes in Episode 4, when Klaus (Robert Sheehan) dies. Yes, you read that right. Klaus dies. (Don’t worry. It won’t last.) Diego’s (David Castenada) son plays with a harpoon gun in the “White Buffalo Suite” – a room they manage to sneak into together, since Klaus is totally the “fun uncle” – and as the kid plays with the gun, it explodes and stabs Klaus through the chest. This results in another afterlife sequence like the one in Season 1, in which Klaus is able to see all the times he actually died; he considered them “near-death experiences”. Then, after a quick and emotional reunion with his mother, it’s reality check for him…much to Diego’s relief.
This sets up a fun getaway for him when he goes to Reginald (Colm Feore) to help him figure out his powers. Reginald is not happy in this reality either; his children keep him drugged and locked in his study, a tradition that Pogo began to stop him from being so harsh on his children. In any case, he is delighted to have a friend in the person of Klaus. They go out to a road in the middle of nowhere where Klaus gets hit by a car a bunch of times, and after each “death”, Reginald times Klaus to see how long it takes him to get back. Eventually, he returns within moments. Later, through a trip to the graveyard, they also discover that he can banish the restless souls of the dead. Cool, Klaus! It will probably come in handy later, Klaus!
Unfortunately, Allison’s (Emmy Raver-Lampman) story goes from bad to worse throughout the season. She tortures Sloane (Genesis Rodriguez) in the aftermath of the attack, even raising Diego’s eyebrows, but later does something much, much worse. Using her “gossip” powers, she convinces a reluctant Luther (Tom Hopper) that he “wants her”, kisses her, then panics and tells him to stop as he tries to work it out with her. Nothing else happens, but it’s a totally gross moment to give Allison. Luther did not consent. Oh, and she kills Harlan too! More to come on this.
From Harlan’s Story: Viktor’s devious solution to his family’s decision to return Harlan is to take him away and work with him to reabsorb his powers. Because Allison sees Viktor trying to leave with Harlan, she gets dragged into it as well. They go to a parking lot in the middle of nowhere, where Harlan tells Viktor to “listen to the sounds beneath the sounds” in order to better control his power. Allison watches, thinking Viktor is in pain, and her opinion of Harlan is set. Even when it finally works and Viktor takes Harlan’s powers, Allison doesn’t like him. She loves him even less when he accidentally admits he was responsible for the whole “umbrella academy moms are dead” thing. Yes, it was Harlan: In a fit of rage and grief at the death of his own mother, he accidentally killed the mothers of all the members of Umbrella Academy. Viktor knew and accepted that it was an accident, but Allison? Not really.
What has Five been doing all this time? He and Lila (Ritu Arya) use their powers to return to the Commission, which has been destroyed. In a bunker, Five finds an older, dying version of himself. This older five tells him not to save the world and mutters about “forgetting” before he dies. He also has a strange tattoo on his chest, which becomes significant when Five realizes it’s the symbol of a biker gang. He goes to the gang’s headquarters and discovers that Pogo – yes, the talking monkey who raised them – is a tattoo artist there. Pogo tells him about the meaning of the tattoo. Reginald had it made as a symbol of “Project Oblivion”.
What does that mean? Diego and Lila get a piece of the puzzle. After he returns from the Commission, they reconcile and wake up together in the White Buffalo Suite. When they do, their child is gone! They discover a door in the wall and go through it, thinking he is on the other side. What’s really on the other side is an apparent alternate reality called Hotel Oblivion. They cannot find Stan, but they find a knight-like monster that cuts off two of Diego’s fingers before they can escape. Stan was on the other side the whole time, but unfortunately the Kugelblitz catches him. Lila also ends up announcing that Stan is not their child. It’s her friends child of some time she spent in a punk band in 1989, and she convinced him to play a prank on Diego.
Thanks to Luther and Sloane’s negotiations over the last few episodes (Luther ends up joining Sparrow Academy), as well as Allison killing Harlan and delivering his body to the remaining Sparrows, peace might be possible. While Viktor is angry at Allison for what she did and the sparrows are still wary of umbrellas, an agreement is formed. They all agree to put their problems aside to help stop the end of the world. Viktor, Lila and Sloane work to contain the Kugelblitz while Christopher (the alien cube Sparrow) traps it inside himself. It seems to work and the celebration ensues. Luther asks Sloane to marry him (they have known each other for less than a week), Lila tells Diego that the whole experience she had with Stan was because she was pregnant (sigh of course), and Five tries to convince Viktor that Allison did the right thing by killing Harlan. This conversation ends with a cute little threat: “Lie to us again, Viktor, and I’ll kill you myself.”
Of course, ending the Kugelblitz couldn’t be that simple. Christopher eventually explodes, taking the only other Sparrow with him who wasn’t Ben (Justin H. Min) or Sloane and triggering the Kugelblitz again. The world further crumbles with the entirety of the House of Sparrows, and the entire group is forced to flee.
One thing I will say: some storylines this season don’t sit well with me, but the musical selections remain relevant. In this sequence of episodes we get “Crystalized” by The XX (Klaus dies and goes to the afterlife), “My Silver Lining” by First Aid Kit (the end of episode 5), a hilarious incorporation from “Cat’s in the Cradle” by Harry Chapin (Klaus gets crushed a billion times while learning to master his powers) and “What Makes You a Man” from The Ninth Wave (Sparrow Academy collapses at the end of episode 6).For a show whose source material was created by Gerard Way, this is perhaps to be expected.
The Umbrella Academy Season 3, streaming now, Netflix