Now seven episodes into its first season, Marvel’s Runaways is proving itself as a worthy adaptation of the comics, but fans shouldn’t expect it to be a word-for-word recreation of the books. So far, the series has demonstrated a willingness to interpret the source material and make changes when necessary, and as the season – and series – moves forward, there’s a good chance those deviations will become much more noticeable as creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage seek to put their own unique stamp on the story.
Deviation from the source material can be a tricky subject to broach with fans of the original, but series star Rhenzy Feliz thinks, in the case of Marvel’s Runaways, it will lead to better storytelling and make the series more interesting – even for those who love the comics. From the look of things, Feliz may be right, as Hulu’s foray into the MCU has already changed a few things up, without causing too much of an uproar with the Marvel faithful, and has seemingly won over critics who continue to appreciate the series’ blend of YA sensibilities and superhero action.
Feliz said as much during a recent interview with Screen Rant. The actor discussed a number of aspects of the show, from Alex and Nico’s relationship to his character’s notorious comic book arc. And while some things from the comics are bound to be represented in the television series, Feliz believes tackling certain aspects of the story from a new angle will better serve the show. Feliz said:
“I think the way they translated things is very, very cool. Of course you wouldn’t want to give the exact same story page for page as the comic. Just because then all the comic book people who came to watch are sort of watching the exact same thing that they read, in which case, what’s the point? So you give kind of the essence. You give the spirit. You give the characters. But then you give it some tuning just to give it a new fresh take and so that it translates better over to medium of television. It’s two different art forms and you kind of have to change some things up. And I’m happy the way they did it because it adds to the storytelling, I think.”
A big part of the positive response to Marvel’s Runaways has been due to the influence of Schwartz and Savage, who have infused the comic book world of Alex, Nico, Chase, Gert, and Molly – as well as their supervillain parents – with familiar aspects of their shows, like The O.C. and Gossip Girl. The blending of sensibilities has lent Runaways a Los Angeles setting that feels distinct, especially for a Marvel TV property, the likes of which typically call NYC home.
As far as the narrative’s big swings are concerned, making changes that stray from the source material and alter the story in ways that, once done, can’t be undone, might be a tough sell with certain segments of the viewing audience. That said, Runaways‘ biggest selling point to the show’s creators might be its relatively low profile when compared to the likes of Spider-Man, Captain America, and even Iron Man. Being a well-liked but lesser-known property offers a little more leeway in terms of changing things up to suit the needs of the television medium. Feliz certainly thinks it’s okay, so it will be interesting as the series marches toward its first season finale to see whether fans agree.
Marvel’s Runaways continues next Tuesday with ‘Refraction’ on Hulu.
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