Based on the popular comic franchise, Marvel’s Runaways on Hulu poses a very interesting question. What if you discovered your parents were evil? The dilemma faces a group of teenagers, when they stumble on the fact that their parents have been lying to them all their lives. They include Alex Wilder (Rhenzy Feliz), who becomes the de factor leader of their group; Molly Hernandez (Allegra Acosta), strong-willed and perceptive; Gert Yorkes (Ariela Barer) fast-talking and quick-witted and Chase Stein (Gregg Sulkin) who looks like the typical jock, but might take after his troubled, genius father.
As the teenagers begin investigating, the adults start to wonder what secrets their kids are keeping from them.
Members of the cast came to the TV Critics Association to discuss their new series Runaways, which premieres on Hulu on November 21st 2017 with the first three episodes.

Can you talk about the tone of the series? It’s kids versus their parents, who are evil, and yet it’s still a family.

Runaways, 101 - Rhenzy Feliz
Runaways, “Reunion” 101 – Alex Wilder (Rhenzy Feliz) ©2017 Hulu, photo by Paul Sarkis

Rhenzy Feliz: I think it’s very interesting, just the situation to be put into. What happens when you find out that your parents aren’t who they say they are? They aren’t these loving figures you think they are? So I think just that journey initially is very interesting, seeing what these kids have to go through, in order to reconcile that fact.

Alex has a pretty good relationship with his family. But when that question is first posed, ‘What’s going on here?’ it’s hard for him. He doesn’t want to accept it. Who would, if you love your parents and you think they are who they are? But, at the same time, he is a very smart kid, so he’s more about the facts. He’s more about let’s find out what’s going on here.

Runaways, 101 - Allegra Acosta
Runaways, “Reunion” 101 – Molly Hernandez (Allegra Acosta) ©2017 Hulu, photo by Paul Sarkis

Allegra Acosta: Molly is more passionate, so she goes by her gut feeling on a very strategical plan. She knows what she wants. And I feel that’s what we have similar to each other.

I think it’s already hard for Molly. I am not going to tell you why. You have to watch the show. But you have to realize at a certain point in your life, unfortunately, in the show, that you have to grow up. So I feel like that’s what it comes to. And it also makes good TV, if you have your parents as villains.

Runaways, 101 - Gregg Sulkin
Runaways, “Reunion” 101 – Chase Stein (Gregg Sulkin) ©2017 Hulu, photo by Paul Sarkis

Gregg Sulkin: My character, Chase, does not have a great relationship with his father. He is a bit of an egotistical maniac. But it is one of those things where no matter how much you dislike your parents, or feel your parent or parents aren’t doing the right thing, deep down, blood is thicker than water.

Runaways, 101 - Ariela Barer
Runaways, “Reunion” 101 – Gert Yorkes (Ariela Barer) ©2017 Hulu, photo by Paul Sarkis

Ariela Barer: No matter how evil you could decide your parents are, you learn your ideals from them, and you become the person you are from them.

And so there’s an internal struggle and searching that has to be done there that it’s not really just, “Are our parents evil?” It’s like, “Am I the product of this?”

How is the series different from the comics?

Allegra: I think that it dives deeper into the comics and makes it more modernized. The comics were published around 2001. Now it’s 2017, so it’s a 17 years’ difference.I feel like it makes the characters more diverse, and we can relate to them more.

Marvel has always done a great job to capture the human spirit and show triumph over evil. I think that’s what we’re going to represent as we go along through a couple seasons. And I think it’s going to be really fun for you guys to watch.

Runaways, 101 - Allegra Acosta), Ariela Barer, Lyrica Okano, Rhenzy Feliz, Gregg Sulkin and Virginia Gardner
Runaways, “Reunion” 101 – Molly Hernandez (Allegra Acosta), Gert Yorkes (Ariela Barer), Nico Minoru (Lyrica Okano), Alex Wilder (Rhenzy Feliz), Chase Stein (Gregg Sulkin) and Karolina Dean (Virginia Gardner) ©2017 Hulu, photo by Paul Sarkis

How well have the writers captured the way teens express themselves today?

Ariela: In the pilot, Josh (Schwartz) and Steph (Savage, the show’s Executive Producers) were totally open to a dialogue about my character’s being a feminist. So to keep up with what’s going on right now in feminism, I know I’m very in my generation. We actually had a phone conference to keep it very true to what’s going on now, and something a real teenager can get behind. I mean, it was already incredibly solid.

Allegra: I feel like they got it covered.

Rhenzy: The thing is that teenagers are still people. Whether or not you’re 17 or you’re 27, you’re still going to feel a certain way when someone betrays you. You’re still going to feel a certain way when you don’t know something, when there are secrets and there are lies. So they get that. Teenager or adult, you have these raw emotions.

Ariela: They don’t patronize us at all. I think the trick is they don’t try too hard to be hip.

Allegra: And a lot of people think that the epitome of a teenager is, ‘Oh, my God. I hate my parents.’ I feel like they capture it because we’re not just that. I feel like we’re growing. We’re trying to embrace ourselves. If we end up building our brand and knowing more about ourselves and trying to be successful in life, I think we all yearn to succeed, and I think that’s what they capture in teenagers.

Gregg: Josh and Stephanie have a very open?door policy. And so I think as teenagers, we massively respect them. We admire them as showrunners. But at the same time, they also are willing to hear us and hear our voice. And I think that will translate into the show.

So I think you get two beautiful perspectives from young adults, Josh and Stephanie. And then, some youngsters like us. I think it’s going to be a cool mix, and I think it’s going to translate on screen.

Runaways, 104 - Gregg Sulkin and Virginia Gardner
Runaways, “Fifteen” 104 – Chase Stein (Gregg Sulkin) and Karolina Dean (Virginia Gardner) ©2017 Hulu, photo by Greg Lewis


Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter.