The Gifted: 2.04 outMatched
After three weeks of establishing the status quo following the events of season one, The Gifted finally pitted the Inner Circle against the Mutant Underground, leading to a violent standoff between the Strucker siblings.
What was really interesting about this latest episode was how blurred the lines between good and bad has become. While ruthless in their actions, the actions of the Inner Circle resulted in a number of mutants freed from their prison of a supposed psychiatric facility. This attack saw the persecution of mutants revealed to the world, leading to a media uproar about their rights.
At the other end, the 'good guys' captured and tortured a mutant hacker for information, drugging him to near death. Even Jace, who sees the dangers of the Mutant population took action that lost him his wife and saw him take one step closer to joining a militant hate group. If there's one weak link this season it is Jace's story; Coby Bell is still a decent actor but the character's story feels so disconnected from the rest of the events, it's hard to care.
Amy Acker is finally getting something decent to do, Kate's determination to find her son Andy forcing her to go to extreme measures, even if it killed the drug-addicted mutant hacker by forcing a severe withdrawal to torture answers and then loading him up to make him compliant. Acker is still managing to make Kate a somewhat sympathetic character but the almost ruthless acts she is commuting does question that.
Marcos, Lauren, John and Clarice stumbling upon the attack on the facility was well directed with atmospheric tension as they wandered through the empty corridors and into the mass of violent, disturbed inmates Lorna released to make their escape. The showdown between Andy and Lauren saw the Strucker daughter badly injured, something that will be hard for Andy to come back from. There was also plenty of mystery behind the hooded mutant the Inner Circle broke out.
outMatched was the best episode of the season yet, bringing some well needed action and mutant against mutant conflict while continuing to deliver some emotional drama to the characters too. It still feels as if The Gifted needs to up things another level to deliver a satisfying pay off on everything that has been built to date. But the potential is very much there.