The cast of The Umbrella Academy continues to grow with five more actors joining the upcoming Netflix series. This past summer, news broke that the streaming giant is developing a small screen adaptation of the Eisner award-winning comics and graphic novels created and written by Gerard Way and illustrated by Gabriel Bá. The comics version of the story first made waves in 2007 via the six-issue limited series titled The Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite, followed by the second series, The Umbrella Academy: Dallas, which first hit the shelves in 2008.
Umbrella Academy revolves around the estranged members of a dysfunctional family of superheroes known as, well, The Umbrella Academy. After going their separate ways, the characters Luther, Diego, Allison, Vanya, Klaus, and Number Five are all forced to band back together following the mysterious death of their father – a case that they must solve themselves. However, things get complicated when the group’s individual personalities threaten to once again drive them all apart.
Earlier last month, it was announced that Ellen Page has been set to play Vanya, the superpower-less, black sheep of the family. Now five more actors have joined her, rounding out the main cast of Umbrella Academy. The show’s new additions include Game of Thrones veteran Tom Hopper as Luther; Hamilton breakout Broadway performer Emmy Raver-Lampman as Allison; David Castañeda, who is also set to appear in the upcoming Sicario sequel Soldado with Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro, as Diego; British Misfits series actor Robert Sheehan as Klaus; and finally, Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn veteran Aidan Gallagher as Number Five.
Superhero properties are currently hot commodities in Hollywood, with big film studios churning out fresh comic book film adaptations every year. The small screen is also populated by numerous series that mine story inspiration from graphic novels, which is why The Umbrella Academy could be an easy sell for Netflix if done right. Aside from its potential to be the company’s next breakout freshman series, its twisted take on a rather beaten core story centering on family could break the mold when it comes to family superheroes – a premise in the genre that has seen limited success over the years. IPs that have similar backdrops like Fox’s twice rebooted Fantastic Four and Marvel TV’s poorly received Inhumans have failed to capitalize on the popularity of superhero offerings, so here’s to hoping Umbrella Academy hits the mark, by comparison.
The Umbrella Academy is a great way for Netflix to get into the comic book genre, especially with their existing Marvel TV series no longer expanding beyond what they already have. Starting in 2019, Disney’s own streaming platform will house future Marvel TV shows, directly competing with the more established streaming service.
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