DISCLAIMER: This recap of Gen V Season 1 Episode 3, “#ThinkBrink,” contains spoilers. Proceed at your peril.
Welcome back, supes! If you’re gonna think, #ThinkBrink. Am I right? Episode three of Gen V ups the ante on the stakes front as Emma has her badass moment in the sun. She also takes an unexpected blood bath! We meet the parents of a few God U. students and flesh out some much-needed character backstories. While the narrative gets a jolt of propulsive energy near the end, most of this outing lets us breathe a bit. We take more time to get to know our core cast and watch their dynamics flourish. It’s nice.
Considering that gory cliffhanger, it’s safe to assume it’s balls-to-the-wall from here on out. Well, at least I hope so.
Ready to delve into “#ThinkBrink”? Let’s get to it.
We open with a flashback from three years ago. Luke (Patrick Schwarzenegger) and Cate (Maddie Phillips) visit Sage Grove Center. While walking to Sam’s room, we glimpse Love Sausage’s, uh, sausage as it slithers about in his room. Love a good nod to a parent show. Luke finds Sam (Asa Germann) punching the wall in his room. This was around when the world learned that supes have their powers because of Compound V. Luke tries to pacify his baby brother; unfortunately, it doesn’t work. Sam punches a guard so hard that his fist pokes through said guard’s mouth. It’s pretty gnarly.
Next, Cate wakes up in bed after collapsing at the end of episode two. Andre (Chance Perdomo) is relieved. He scolds her for using her powers too much. One of these days, she might give herself an aneurysm. Cate insists she’s feeling much better. Andre shows Cate what he found on Brink’s laptop — Sam is alive and imprisoned in The Woods. Andre wants to break him out. The conversation culminates in grief-fueled sex. I had a feeling these two would hook up.
Later, Marie (Jaz Sinclair) hears a voice while lying in bed that night. It’s Emma (Lizze Broadway), and she’s smaller than ever. After eating enough food to return to normal size, Emma finally tells Marie how she shrinks. Marie is understandably worried. She believes Emma has an eating disorder. Emma points out that Marie slits her palms to access her powers. Both of their abilities are narrative avenues to explore disordered eating and self-harm. Anyway, Emma doesn’t want to talk about it anymore.
The following morning, preparations are in full swing for a fundraiser gala in Brink’s honor. Dean Shetty (Shelley Conn) has breakfast with Marie. She compliments Marie on conducting herself in a professional manner during her interview with Hailey Miller. Shetty asks Marie if she would accompany her to the gala that night. Initially, Marie is hesitant, but she eventually accepts the invitation. Meanwhile, Polarity (Sean Patrick Thomas) orders Andre to attend the gala with him so the latter can schmooze with God U.’s generous donors.
Next, Justine (Maia Jae Bastidas) approaches Emma to apologize again. She admits that Emma’s story isn’t hers to tell. Emma notices Justine’s friend with the tail is filming them. Justine simply wants to ensure the world knows how sorry she is. Ew. Then, Emma’s mom, Tiffany (Rayisa Kondracki), runs toward her. Oh, hey, Constance Clootie from Wynonna Earp. Tiffany is there to attend the Brink fundraiser with her daughter. She starts obsessing over Emma’s weight. Ugh. She’s one of those moms. Marie apologizes to Cate regarding what she said about Luke — how Marie claimed on-air that Luke was dangerous. Cate doesn’t seem open to accepting Marie’s apology.
We flash back to three years ago when Luke was told that Sam committed suicide. Cate comforts him. He begs Cate to manipulate his mind so he can no longer feel this pain. However, she embraces him, gently reminding him he’s supposed to work through his grief.
Later, Jordan (London Thor) has sex with one of their classmates. Things are going swell until Jordan’s parents knock on their door. Their sex pal, who can walk through walls, exits their room and enters the next in his birthday suit. Jordan clears their space of “girly” things and transforms into their male form (Derek Luh) before opening the door. Paul (Peter Kim) and Kayla (Laura Kai Chen) are on the other side with Voughtaburger. Jordan only presents as a man to their parents due to their lack of understanding regarding their bi-gender identity.
Marie boasts a stunning red gown that evening as she enters the gala with Shetty. Marie’s the talk of the town. She butters up the donors, who tell her that her parents must be proud. Marie talks about her late parents in the present tense. She’s not a fan of lying, but Shetty claims those rich fuddy-duddies don’t care about the truth. Meanwhile, Courtenay Fortney (Jackie Tohn) talks to Emma and Tiffany about a potential series for “Little Cricket.” Tiffany is on board regarding riding her daughter’s coattails, while Emma’s unsure about this career move. It would be a reality show that mines the depths of Emma’s truth. Ugh.
I love how Courtenay is a parody of those PR/studio execs who claim they want “emotion” and “authenticity,” but only if it’s manufactured/curated to what’s “trending” with the public. Elsewhere, Jordan tries to persuade a school board member to support a ranking boost for them. The new rankings will be released the following day. Said school board member claims he likes Jordan, but their “numbers” aren’t high enough. Everyone’s a commodity.
Then, Emma and Marie mend fences in the bathroom. Yay for being besties again. On the gala floor, Jordan’s fed up with their father treating them like they’re only a man. They shift back into a woman, reminding their dad about their true identity. Being bi-gender is who they are. Unfortunately, their father struggles to accept that. In other screwed-up parent news, Emma returns from the bathroom to poo-poo on Courtenay’s pitch and tell her mother to f*ck off. Tiffany taught Emma to purge to tap into her powers. That’s repugnant behavior on Tiffany’s part.
Meanwhile, Andre runs into Cate. He wants to put a plan into action that night while everyone’s distracted by the gala. She seems unsure about forging ahead into such dangerous territory. Andre heads outside, where he encounters Emma. They chat. He broaches the subject of enlisting her aid in conducting reconnaissance. Andre asks Emma if she’d shrink herself to gather intel on Sam’s location. She enthusiastically obliges.
Later, Andre arms Emma with a tracker to track her movements. He urges her not to do anything heroic; this is solely to find Sam. Little Emma walks through a crack in the wall. Emma hops onto one worker’s cart as she delivers food to The Woods captives. She winds up in Sam’s room. Sam spots Emma and traps her in a plastic cup. Uh-oh. At the gala, Marie helps Shetty present a slideshow dedicated to Brink. Andre confronts his dad regarding The Woods. Unfortunately, Polarity knows about it, and he urges Andre to keep quiet to save himself.
Next, Sam asks Emma a series of questions to prove she’s not a figment of his imagination. Well, she doesn’t guess that his favorite movie is Waterworld, which is evidence of how real she is. Elsewhere, Jordan and Cate drink the nicest vodka they can get their hands on. Jordan taunts Marie, who’s not in the mood for anyone’s sh*t. In a fit of rage, Marie discloses to them that she inadvertently killed her parents with her burgeoning powers. Jordan softens their edges while Cate empathizes with her. Cate shares that she told her brother to go away and never return when they were little, unaware that she, too, had powers. Her brother was never found. Ouch.
Cate advises Marie not to spend another minute mourning her parents. All of their parents were paid handsomely to let strangers inject them with Compound V. We see a turning point where these three truly start to bond. Aw. Meanwhile, Sam and Emma also bond over Waterworld. Emma reveals she’s there to help Sam escape. Initially, Sam claims he won’t try to leave again because there are consequences. However, he changes his tune when Emma states that Luke sent her. Of course, Sam doesn’t know his brother is dead.
Andre tells Marie, Jordan and Cate that he sent Emma into The Woods to search for Sam. They scold Andre for making such a reckless decision. Emma could be in danger. Speaking of, armed security is alerted to an intruder in the facility. They barge into Sam’s room and shock him repeatedly. Sam urges Emma to run. Instead, she leaps into the air, landing on one security officer’s shoulder. She climbs into his eardrum and kills him. We see blood spilling out of his ears as he dies. When Sam wakes, he spots Emma as she emerges from the dead man’s ear, covered head to toe in blood. Unfortunately, a few more soldiers burst through the doorway, guns raised. Emma mutters an understandable “F*ck.”
How will Emma and Sam escape this sticky (and bloody) situation? Can Marie, Andre, Jordan and Cate save them? Is Rufus still whacking his jewels with a Louisville slugger and intermittently yelling, “Jumanji”? Only time (and more episodes) will tell.
Gen V drops new episodes every Friday on Prime Video.
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