The world is ending… again in The Umbrella Academy season two


The Umbrella Academy season 2 released to Netflix, ending with a cliffhanger that will leave audiences waiting for season 3. Photo / Netflix

It started with the apocalypse and the seven siblings of The Umbrella Academy traveling back in time to stop the world from ending. Oh, how things tend to spiral out of control.

The new season picks up right where the first season left off, yet instead of the siblings going back in time to stop the apocalypse of 2019, they wind up traveling all the way back to the ‘60s, with the end of the world following them there. 

The siblings in question are the adopted children of billionaire Reginald Hargreeves (Colm Feore). There are seven in total, each with a number lovingly given to them by Reginald instead of actual names. In numerical order, the siblings include: Luther (Tom Hopper), Diego (David Castañeda), Allison (Emmy Raver-Lampman), Klaus (Robert Sheehan), Five (Aidan Gallagher), Ben (Justin Min) and Vanya (Ellen Page).

This new timeline offers up unique circumstances for each of the siblings, with each starting a new life with the cards they’ve been dealt. When Five finally arrives in the ‘60s, he finds the U.S. and the Soviets at war, with his siblings at the forefront of the battle. Though that battle eventually ends with the Soviets nuking the U.S. and causing the end of the world, Hazel (Cameron Britton) swoops in seconds before the bombs land and takes Five back to 10 days before the end of the world, giving him time to save his family and the world along with it.

The second season of The Umbrella Academy is the highly anticipated sequel to Netflix’s incredibly popular and successful first season. The first season was released on Feb. 15, 2019 and is based around the characters and plot lines of the comic series of the same name, written by Gerard Way and produced by Dark Horse Entertainment. 

Though the sequel was announced the same month the original was released, fans didn’t get any information about the sequel until fairly recently and didn’t receive a trailer until a few days before the release of the show on July 31, 2020.

As with the previous season, fans will be delighted with the choices of music for the show, ranging from a cover of Billie Eilish’s ‘Bad Guy,’ to ‘Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),’ by the Backstreet Boys. Fans of the original can also expect similar fun and comical sibling shenanigans, including a dance scene between Vanya, Klaus and Allison.

One of the biggest improvements this season had to offer was the far more meaningful interactions between the siblings. Vanya, though she starts off with memory loss, finally has her place among her siblings, who are finally treating her with the love she deserves. Though each has their own issues with each other, we really see the love they have for one another this season. 

One of the biggest outcries and conflicts with the first season was the weird relationship between Luther and Allison. There is far less of that now that Allison is married to the kind and enthusiastic Ray Chestnut (Yusuf Gatewood). Other great new additions to the cast include Sissy (Marin Ireland) as Vanya’s love interest, Lila (Ritu Arya) as Diego’s love interest, and Elliot (Kevin Rankin), the lovable, paranoid man who is able to bring the lost siblings together again. 

As much as the new season improves upon previous issues and makes for a fun, emotional rollercoaster, the sequel still has one underlying issue — the antagonists.

Fans of the first season will recall how tricky time travel can be, especially when the Commission is involved. Though the Commission is obviously a big part of the show, this season their involvement was not as entertaining or worthwhile as the first season was. 

The big bad is still the Handler, who somehow survived a bullet to the head and immediately goes back to shit-stirring. However, my gripe with the Commission’s involvement has more to do with the Swedes, the band of three brothers sent to eliminate the Hargreeves siblings. 

In season one, we had the entertaining and dangerous duo of Hazel and Cha-Cha (Mary J. Blige), two agents with the Commission who donned some pretty interesting masks. Though they were obviously the bad guys, there was more to their story than just to take out Five and his siblings. Hazel forms a relationship with Agnes and develops from an antagonist to more of an anti-hero. Cha-Cha, who ultimately remains on the side of the commission, has far more depth to her than just simply being a villain.

The Swedes were supposed to be their equivalent, yet they just never live up to what Hazel and Cha-Cha brought to the series. They hardly say anything for the majority of the show and it feels as though they don’t fully fit into the storyline the way they should. There is nothing more to their characters, other than the fact they’re Swedish brothers. There is no depth and there is very little growth over the course of the season. 

However, even with this issue, the new season carries on the best of the first season and brings back the characters the viewers love for a brand new adventure. Though the stakes seem similar upon first glance, the season is able to stump the viewer as to what will happen next. The characters grow more together this season, while still retaining their unique traits that make them who they are. There’s a great balance between scenes to make viewers laugh and cry, carrying on the unique dynamic of the show that has gained it so much attention. 

And what’s The Umbrella Academy without a confusing and vague cliffhanger to bring people back for another season? Audiences will just have to wait and see what’s in store next for the Hargreeves siblings and their lovable, dysfunctional family.

Rating: 4/5 stars