The 'Runaways' Cast on Their Characters' Evolutions Across Entire Series
Watch the third and final season exclusively on Hulu now!
Marvel's Runaways first debuted on Hulu back in November 2017. Over these past three years, we've watched six Brentwood teens come to terms that their parents may be slightly evil, understand their own gifted abilities, live on the mean streets of Los Angeles, and juggle complicated relationship statuses, all while saving the world from their parents, an alien royal family, and a sinister sorceress.
As the series wrapped recently with the third and final season, Marvel.com sat down with the cast to talk about how the Runaways have grown and changed from the very first episode to the series finale. Let's celebrate these super-powered teens — Alex Wilder, Nico Minoru, Karolina Dean, Chase Stein, Gert Yorkes and Molly Hernandez!
"The arc that Alex has gone on from Season One to Season Three is so drastic," shared Rhenzy Feliz. "It's such a different place from point A to point Z. He goes from being this sort of sweet, good intentioned kid to now that he's back from the Dark Dimension, he is cutthroat. There's a lot going on with him and I think so many more stories to be told.""He's so different from the beginning; he's had to go to the sacrifice," reflected Feliz. "He's had to go through the loss of so many things. The people he's let in close to him have either abandoned him, he's put in danger or they've lost their lives so it's tough for him to let people in at this point. It's tough for him to go out of his way to care for someone when he's had to go through so many things where the person he's arguably cared about the most being his mother and his parents, as weird of a relationship as they have."
On the topic of Alex's relationship with his parents, Feliz shared, "At the end of the day, there's still a lot of love between them. They share an incredible relationship. I remember Season One, Episode One when we were talking about characters and Alex and his family and his parents, there was so much talk about how much he really does love them. They could be talking his ear off on the make friends thing, but at the end of the day he loves his parents very very much and so when he finds out the news that he finds out, I think it's him deciding right over wrong and knowing that this is right and now what they're doing is wrong. Besides the fact that he loves that he knows he has to do something right for justice. And so there's still love there, and that it's tough for him to do what he has to do in the Dark Dimension and doing that to someone that he loves, having to do that having lost what he's lost, and then having to do those action against someone that he has loved, I think that sort of throws him off the end."
"For me personally, I have a lot of similarities with Nico," revealed Lyrica Okano. "One being that I can’t express my feelings well and the other being I’m just 'all or nothing.' Nico has gone through that all three seasons. It’s all or nothing. It’s either 'I love this person completely and will do anything to protect this person,' or 'I will destroy this person to protect the person I love.'"
"In Episode 10, we see Nico, she’s no longer leaning on her goth look and she’s no longer leaning on the Staff of One," remarked Okano. "She’s very confident and self assured. She’s kind of figured out, by the time that she does reunite with Karolina, in the future, three years on, she’s figured out that it’s possible to find a balance in it all. You don’t have to sacrifice everything to keep both in your world. For me, I learned personally a lot through Nico's journey in that way as well."
As for the arrival of Morgan le Fay and being drawn to another person like you, Okano shared, "Meeting another witch was very interesting for Nico because she’s had to figure out the Staff of One’s powers by herself throughout this journey, maybe a little coaching from Tina before, but other than that it’s always been on her own. Meeting Morgan is a huge door opening for her to the world of magic. Also, Morgan is just so enticing. The way she kind of manipulates Nico into trusting her will be very interesting to watch. Because Nico loves Karolina deeply and cares deeply for everyone else in the Runaways, there’s a lot at stake for her. So for Morgan to come in and be like 'you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do. These are your choices: take it or leave it. But I’m the only one who can help you and I’m the only one who can guide you through. What are you going to do?' It's tempting."
Nico also made peace with her complicated relationship with her parents. "This season is so real for Nico because she’s kind of finally coming to terms with what her family and all the Runaways’ parents had to go through in terms of sacrificing for the ones they love," reflected Okano. "Nico had to do a lot of that this season, and it really reconnects her to her parents in terms of what they had to go through to protect Nico and now for Nico to go through the same thing."
"This season for Karolina, a lot of it has to do with Nico," commented Virginia Gardner. "Nico is fighting this battle between dark and light, and what direction she's going to want to go in. Karolina's so afraid that she's lost her girlfriend to the dark side, so a lot of this season, Karolina is really just trying to figure out whether or not she actually can be with Nico. This season, there's a kind of push-pull with the woman that she's fallen in love with, and she has to see if it actually is going to work out for her."
"Karolina in the pilot was just putting a fake smile on all the time and she's very innocent and pure," continued Gardner. "When you find her years down the line , she's just like they lost their best friend. They've experienced death, they realized their parents are evil, they've battled in the Dark Dimension. So much has happened over the last few years for Runaways, it's great to just find her in like a stable place as like a mature woman who has a home and is going to school and is just trying to figure out what that next step in her life is going to be."
Another bright spot for Karolina Dean is coming to terms with who she is. "Things were really tough for Karolina, but good news is that kind of towards the end of the season, we reconnect with the parents a bit and they start to become allies again. And Karolina's mom, Karolina and Leslie reconnect which is great. Even though she's losing everyone alien around her, she's like, deepening that connection with her mother which is really important to her."
Over the three seasons, Gert is tested in ways that rocked her very secure relationships with her family and pushed her to her limits living on the run without her medication. "Gert's at a point where she doesn't really trust a lot of people," exclaimed Ariela Barer. "She's kind of on her own. She's got like, Molly. She's just kind of about getting out of the situation on her own, not calling for help. That's kind of a recurring thing this season where she's discovering her own independence and not being tied to anybody. Figuring out herself in her progression through that, but then also maybe realizing that there's a middle ground and you can trust people and be with someone and not have your identity tied to them."
Following her death, and the time travel to bring her back, Gert evaluates her relationship with Chase, reflected Barer. "There's just kind of this bigger thing happening that she has to surrender to for a second that maybe this guy and her are like linked in a bigger way. Maybe soulmates are real and they are kind of really just meant to be in a big kind of almost higher power kind of way. They are just meant to work in whatever timeline it happens."
For Chase Stein, at the end of Season 2, he was tired of being on the run and seeing the woman he love suffer. "We've got lucky once, we're not going to get lucky twice," said Gregg Sulkin. "Obviously, Chase has to deal with his relationship with Gert and the consequences of what's happened in Season Two and how it affected his relationship. Chase loves Gert so much and he's determined to do everything in his power to protect her and save her and save the Runaways. This season, we have a new love interest potentially for Gert, and Chase isn't too happy about that."
At the start of the series, we got two witness completely opposite individuals fall for each other. However, devastatingly, Gert dies during the final showdown with Morgan le Fay, and Chase can't deal with that loss. "Chase is in a very devastated place when Gert dies," reflected Sulkin. "What happens to Chase is, he's very determined to get her back. He knows that he's capable, more he believes he's capable of getting her back. Instead of moving on, he tries to move back. He loves Gert so much that he's willing to do everything in his power to do that."
The loss of Gert wasn't the only loss Chase experienced this season. "
"My favorite scenes of shooting the show have always been with James [Marsters] and Ever [Carradine] because I just have a very special connection to them," shared Sulkin. "The relationship between Chase and Victor is so complex, and the relationship between Chase and Janet is also so complex. Even when she dies, there's some emotions there, but at the same time he wants the best for his mom. He knows what she's gone through."
As for our youngest Runaway, Allegra Acosta exclaimed, "Seeing Molly's growth through these seasons is crazy because I'm the only one who is going through puberty on the show, like the first chunk of puberty. That's me." In Season 3, Molly is separated from her sister Gert, which forces her to lean on others but importantly trust in herself.
"Molly's just learning from Xavin," said Acosta, "to become this warrior and be self-sufficient. She has her own journey, and she's deciding that she doesn't have to rely on the group to do her own things. She's also exchanging her own ideas on to Xavin that changes her mind. Molly goes out and ventures out to see what would happen if she continued off being a normal. She's a 15 year old girl with these powers; can she manage being a part-time Super Hero and part-time herself. She's building strength within her; she's had a lot of abandonment issues throughout the beginning of time. So to create those relationships and now be studying herself to become like this warrior-esque powerful princess. To become Bruiser, that's her new journey. "
"I love it because you get to see how I grew up on playing this character," continued Acosta. "That's what makes it really real because you see Molly actually growing up. The contrast is so different. In Episode One, everyone was shielding her again, protecting her from never seeing anything bad. Then she learns that she has a power, learns about her parents. She also really, really is yearning for company and to be part of something by the end of Season Three. You see that she's still herself and she's still Molly. She's just older in age and she's taking on the sense of leadership and just letting her light shine, because she's so positive. As she grew up, she got even more mature and wiser than she's ever been. And to see that dynamic of when she's a cheerleader back in school. She knows that she can take on the world, and she's affirmative in her decisions. She is the strongest one, and she comes into fruition of what she's always wanted to be. It's really satisfying. I've it's been very humbling to work on this show, and I've learned a lot so it's been great."
All 10 episodes of Marvel’s Runaways Season 3 is exclusively available to stream on Hulu now!
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