Hulu’s adaptation of Marvel’s cult classic series, Runaways, appears to be making progress. First they revealed which actors would be playing the titular superpowered teens on the run from their supervillain parents, and then on Thursday, they revealed which actors would play the evil moms and dads that make up the Pride. It’s a pretty good-looking crop of performers, but there’s something missing: the youngest Runaway’s parents. It’s increasingly seeming like Marvel might be making a lot of changes to the mutant Molly in bringing her from the comics to TV.
Marvel’s website announced the casting of the Pride by providing an actor’s headshot and a character bio for each member, just like they did for the Runaways last week. Molly’s parents — who in the comic are two telepathic mutants — are not included, and there isn’t any explanation. This is eyebrow-raising, especially because that first casting announcement already alluded to some changes to the character. Her name, for starters, has been changed from Molly Hayes to Molly Hernandez, presumably to help make the series more diverse (which is good). It also seems like she’s been aged up a little bit.
What fans noticed during that initial casting reveal was that Molly’s character bio wasn’t nearly as thorough as the other Runaways. It seemed almost like an afterthought. Her total lack of parents — who, again, were equally as important as the other members of the Pride in the comic — doesn’t assuage the fear that Molly’s role is going to be minimized or drastically changed.
Whatever’s going on with Molly (if anything) might have something to do with the character’s mutant roots. The ownership rights around Mutants are, as always, a confusing nightmare.
We’ll find out what the deal is when the series’ premiere draws closer, although there’s no release date at this point.
Here are the members of the Pride (minus Molly’s folks)
Ryan Sands plays Geoffrey Wilder, described as “a hulking presence” who can “effortlessly shift from approachable father to intimidating strategist with his son, Alex.” Angel Parker plays the deliberate and calculating Catherine Wilder.
Brittany Ishibashi plays Nico’s magical mother, Tina Minoru. She’s described as a ruthless “tiger mom,” while her husband Robert Minoru, played by James Yaegashi, is described as “a gentle and brilliant beta.” Huh.
Kevin Weisman plays Gert’s time-traveling dad, Dale Yorkes. Marvel says he’s “a beardy, dad-core bioengineer,” which seems a little cringeworthy. Brigid Brannagh’s Stacey Yorkes is more absentminded.
Annie Wersching stars asLeslie Dean, who “draws in devoted allies and followers who are taken by her success and charm, particularly with her daughter Karolina.” Her other half is Kip Pardue’s Frank Dean, “a former teen star who rode a short-lived movie career and is now teeming with insecurity.”
Finally (because Molly has seemingly been orphaned), there’s Chase’s parents. James Marsters is Victor Stein, “an engineering genius” who “has lofty expectations for his son” and a strict upbringing. Ever Carradine plays Janet Stein, a “perfect PTA mom” who secretly wants more.
All the bios seems to suggest slightly deeper characterization than we saw in the comics, where the Pride mostly just focused on their children or, uh, evil. We’ll see what other changes have been made when Runaways eventually premieres.