The Tomorrow People Season 1 Review “Limbo”

The Tomorrow People (17)

All of us had to suffer through being a teenager, but I doubt that any of us also had to contend with having superpowers. I’m sure that would’ve significantly complicated matters for me when I was a teenager. They certainly caused Stephen to have the worst day ever. In this episode of The Tomorrow People, Stephen found out that with great power comes great headaches.

Everyone at Ultra HQ was still trying to process Darcy’s death, and a lot of them blamed Stephen for it. One agent in particular got in Stephen’s face, pushed him around a bit and told him he didn’t belong at Ultra. Stephen was having a hard time coping, and Jedikiah (being the kind, sensitive soul that he is) told Stephen to take a few days off to get his head back in the game. Actually, he didn’t particularly care about Stephen. He told Stephen to take a few days off because he was destroying team morale. Love you too, Uncle Jed. At any rate, Stephen went back to school and Astrid told him he should have more fun with his powers. He agreed and ended up using his powers to: win a basketball game for his team in gym class, get asked by the coach to join the varsity basketball team, throw a huge party at his house, hook up with the high school hot chick, accidentally read his best friend’s mind to find out that she’s in love with him, and basically turn into a massive jerk. So, you know, stuff any normal teenager with superpowers would do. Or (as Astrid pointed out) something straight out of a John Hughes movie. Either way, Uncle Jed was not amused. He and Agent Sourpuss showed up and put a bracelet on Stephen that prevented him from being able to use his powers.

This is the first time that we’ve spent any significant amount of time with Stephen just being a teenager. For most of the season, it’s been mentioned in passing that Stephen has homework or school or whatever. Mostly, though, Stephen has been dealing with very adult situations and not really focused at all on just being a kid. His behavior here reminds us that despite having all this weight placed upon his shoulders, he’s no more mature than any other kid his age. It seems that with few exceptions, everyone in Stephen’s life has forgotten that. Even Stephen seems to have forgotten that he’s still a kid. His lack of critical thinking skills and his impulsive responses to situations demonstrate that he still has a whole lot of maturing left to do.

While Stephen was playing basketball and throwing house parties, Cara, John, and Russell were tracking a tomorrow person who was kidnapping and raping women. They decided they needed to find him and turn him over to Ultra so that Ultra could strip his powers. I’m not an Ultra fan, but in this instance, we agree that this guy needed to be castrated. Cara was especially intent upon catching the guy no doubt because of what happened to her the night the broke out. Stephen wanted to help, but after Jedikiah put on the bracelet, John told Stephen he was useless to them. There was a lot of tension between Stephen, Cara and John (more on that later) but they ended up having to work together to take down the pervert. Stephen figured out where the rapist was taking the women he abducted and went to apprehend the pervert. That was a bad idea since Stephen almost got himself killed. Thankfully, he was able to telepathically call Cara for help. She and the Calvary showed up, took down the rapist, and saved Stephen’s life.

One thing this episode pointed out is that superpowers don’t make you a better person. They simply reveal what you already are inside. The rapist was a bad seed even before he got powers, and all the powers did was make him more dangerous and harder to catch. It also demonstrated that tomorrow people don’t have to kill in order to be dangerous. That’s why I would argue that an entity like Ultra is necessary. There needs to be someone keeping tabs on the tomorrow people. There needs to be someone that the tomorrow people have to answer to if they cross the line into hurting people. However, I don’t think Ultra should be as autonomous as it is. I don’t think it should be able to summarily execute or strip tomorrow people’s powers just because they want to either. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: a super secret quasi-governmental agency that doesn’t have to answer to the public or to lawmakers is not a good thing.

Now let’s get to this ridiculous love triangle. John immediately realized that something was off when he and Russell got back from Seattle. He figured Cara was still upset about him not telling her he could kill. Poor guy didn’t even know that Cara was hiding the fact she cheated on him with Stephen. Cara finally confessed that she’d slept with Stephen, and John took it about as well as one could expect. There was the inevitable fisticuffs between Stephen and John. There was Cara declaring her love for and dedication to John while also admitting that she and Stephen have a connection. There was Stephen following around behind Cara like a little lost puppy. All of it was rather eye-roll inducing. I just want to reiterate how much I do not like the love triangle story. Aside from it being completely awkward, it’s completely unnecessary. It adds unnecessary drama to a story that is already dramatic enough. Isn’t it possible for Cara and Stephen to have a connection without it turning into a romantic thing? Doesn’t Cara have connections with all the other tomorrow people? I don’t see her sleeping with them. Besides, Stephen and Cara don’t make as much sense as Stephen as Astrid.

I’m kind of disappointed that we didn’t get to spend any time with Astrid adjusting to Stephen’s new powers. She seems to be totally on board with it, and she hasn’t even really asked him any questions about how it works. I guess we were supposed to infer from some of their conversations that Stephen explained everything to her, but show beats tell. I don’t want to hear about it. I want to see it. It just feels like lazy writing to add a throwaway line about the mechanics of teleportation to demonstrate that Stephen explained everything to Astrid. Furthermore, I’m pretty sure Stevie Wonder could see that Astrid is in love with Stephen. He should’ve known that even before he accidentally read her mind. C’mon man. She had unrequited Ducky love written all over her face. I like her much better for Stephen than I like Cara anyway.

Despite my annoyance with a couple aspects of the story, I still found this episode pretty enjoyable. Jedikiah seems to suspect that Cara still has her powers, and I don’t think it’ll be too long before he confronts Stephen with that information. Stephen also got a vision of his father while he was down in the sewers. I couldn’t tell whether that was his father telling him not to die or whether it was his father appearing telepathically to give Stephen some information. Either way, it looks like the search for dear old Dad is going to take center stage from here on out. So what did y’all think of this week’s The Tomorrow People?

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