Suffering from a little superhero fatigue courtesy of the Big Two? Looking for something completely different? Then The Umbrella Academy is for you.
Haven’t heard of The Umbrella Academy before? We’ll catch you up quickly, before diving into the casting announcements – which feature some Hamilton, Merlin and Misfits alums. (Yeah, we’re hyped about that as well.)
Netflix’s The Umbrella Academy series will be based on the graphic novels of the same name, which were written by Gerard Way, illustrated by Gabriel Bá and published by Dark Horse Comics.
Umbrella Academy follows the lives of an estranged family of superpowered siblings, who are reunited as adults when their adoptive father dies. Together they investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding his death. The siblings were among 43 children born to several random, unconnected women who showed no signs of pregnancy, all of whom have some kind of superpower.
The comic series has won several Eisner Awards – for good reason – and is a refreshing and welcome take on the superhero genre as a whole. So, if you’re looking for something a little off the beaten track of what we’re used to from the Big Two, definitely keep Umbrella Academy on your radar.
And now, with that introduction done, let’s move onto the cast.
Ellen Page – Vanya Hargreeves
Announced earlier this month, Ellen Page (X-Men, Inception, Juno) will be playing the role of Vanya Hargreeves. Unlike her adoptive siblings, Vanya does not display any special abilities. Her arc thorough the first run of the comics sets in motion the events of the rest of the series. The outcast of the Umbrella Academy, Vanya instead turned her focus to the violin, and is an aficionado.
Tom Hopper – Luther Hargreeves (Spaceboy)
Merlin fans will instantly recognize this addition to the cast. Tom Hopper – who also starred in Game of Thrones and Black Sails – will be playing Luther Hargreeves. Luther is the leader of the Umbrella Academy, and the twin brother of Number Five. Following an accident whilst on a mission to Mars, Luther’s head was transplanted onto the body of a gorilla, a move made to save his life.
David Castañeda – Diego Hargreeves (Kraken)
David Castañeda (Jane the Virgin) joins the cast as Diego Hargreeves. Diego is the most rebellious of his siblings, and has the power to hold his breath indefinitely. He also has an affinity for knife throwing. Diego and Luther have a rivalry, which complicates matters somewhat when the Hargreeves siblings reunite.
Emmy Raver-Lampman – Allison Hargreeves (Rumor)
Whilst Umbrella Academy will serve as Raver-Lampman’s first television appearance, she will be no stranger to the pop-culture initiated. Raver-Lampman has served as part of the cast of both Wicked and Hamilton, and was recently promoted to the role of Angelica Schuyler for the latter’s West Coast run. As for Allison? Well, her power is the ability to alter reality by lying. She sometimes resorts to using paper in order to communicate, rather than risk using her abilities.
Robert Sheehan – Klaus Hargreeves (The Séance)
Next up is Robert Sheehan, of Misfits fame. That Sheehan is stepping into another off-beat, superpowered series will be exciting for any fan of the former series – as Umbrella Academy will be right up their street in terms of interest. Sheehan will be playing Klaus and, as his name suggests, he has the ability to communicate with the dead. He also has the power of telekinesis, and is known to be a particularly heavy drinker and drug user.
Aidan Gallagher – Number Five
Finally, rounding out the main cast, is Aidan Gallagher (Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn) as Number Five. Unlike his siblings, Number Five has no name – though Reginald Hargreeves, his adoptive father, sometimes called him The Boy. Number Five has the ability to travel through time and, due to a temporal condition, also does not age. In the comics he is frozen at 13-years-old, but is actually the eldest of all the siblings. Number Five is also one of the world’s deadliest assassins.
‘Umbrella Academy’ is due to premiere on Netflix in 2018