News

8 Things to Know About Marvel's Inhumans According to the King and Queen

Serinda Swan and Anson Mount explain their secret language, fighting poses and goofy canine sidekick Lockjaw.

by | August 28, 2017 | Comments

As Mel Brooks and Tom Petty said, “It’s good to be king.” Maybe they should update the saying, because it’s good to be king and queen. Anson Mount and Serinda Swan play Black Bolt and Medusa on Marvel’s Inhumans. They are king and queen of a colony of superhumans with powers thanks to genetic modification. Also, they live on the moon.

There’s trouble brewing in their moon kingdom though. Maximus (Iwan Rheon), Black Bolt’s brother, isn’t Inhuman. He thinks it’s wrong to force humans without the Inhuman gene to work in the moon mines and leads a rebellion. This battle takes the Inhumans to Earth, Hawaii specifically, along with their giant dog Lockjaw. Here, they’re going to run into a lot more humans.

Swan and Mount spoke to Rotten Tomatoes before the premiere of Marvel’s Inhumans. Here are eight things the king and queen of the Inhumans revealed about the eight episodes of Inhumans’s first season.


1. YOU WON’T ALWAYS KNOW WHO THE BAD GUYS ARE

At the beginning, it may seem like Medusa and Black Bolt are trying to stop a violent revolution. But then, it’s not very nice to make regular humans do all the hard work. Medusa even doubts herself.

“Both sides can be understood,” Swan said. “I think there’s no defined protagonist/antagonist. You see her kind of ebb and flow of what she thinks is right, her moral compass and conflict in the family.”

Even though there are some Inhumans on Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., these Inhumans come to a place that hasn’t seen Inhumans before. Let’s just say Hawaiians aren’t gonna greet them with “mahalo.”

“Inhumans see the humans as evil and the humans see the Inhumans as evil,” Swan said. “So you see this dynamic, this duality come together where it’s two misunderstandings. You start to bridge that gap over time and [learn] to be more open and compassionate to differences.”


2. BLACK BOLT ENJOYS HIS SILENCE

Black Bolt can’t speak. His voice can obliterate planets, so he keeps his mouth shut. Surprisingly, Mount had never been asked if Black Bolt enjoys staying mute or wishes he could speak more conventionally. Faced with the question for the first time, he decided.

“I’m embarrassed to say I’ve never thought of that question,” Mount said. “That’s a damn good question and something I’m going to spend time thinking about if we go to a second season. I would say where I’m starting, I think he’s kind of glad he doesn’t talk. I think it helps him be emotionally removed in a way that’s safe.”


3. BLACK BOLT’S SIGN LANGUAGE IS NOT READY TO TEACH IN SCHOOL

Black Bolt uses sign language to speak with Medusa, but it’s not American Sign Language, because that didn’t exist on the moon. Mount created his own set of signs. By the end of season one, he had a 50-page Google document listing them all.

Several fictional languages are spoken by fans, like Klingon and Dothraki. Black Bolt’s sign language could join them, eventually, but not in season one.

“I don’t think it’s a complete language yet,” Mount said. “If the show goes a few seasons, it will [be]. We’re not there yet. If you asked me to do a sentence for you right now, I wouldn’t be able to do it. I would have to go to my room, sit down, open up my glossary, translate it and then work for about an hour to get it into my body.”

Since the language is definitely not ASL, Mount had to check ASL to make sure he wasn’t crossing over any of the same words. One or two couldn’t help but be similar.

“There may be one or two crossovers that I haven’t thought about,” Mount said. “There are some things that are pretty obvious, like ‘me’ and ‘now’ or ‘here.’ When it was something that was in my head, I want to make sure this is not a crossover, I would Google it and see.”


4. MEDUSA ONLY TRANSLATES WHAT SHE WANTS

Medusa is the only other Inhuman who knows Black Bolt’s language. That doesn’t make her a reliable translator though. Sometimes she says whatever she wants and Black Bolt can’t speak up to correct her.

“[Writer] Scott [Buck] would intentionally have Medusa tweaking a line, and I didn’t realize that,” Mount said. “I would hear it and I would go, ‘Actually, that’s not the line.’ She’d go, ‘No, actually that is the line. You just didn’t read my part of the scene.’ So that was fun.”


5. FOUR POUNDS OF HAIR GETS HOT IN HAWAII

Swan said the Medusa wig weighs four pounds. That doesn’t sound like much, but when you have to balance it on your head all day, and it’s pulling your neck down from the floor, that can cause some serious whiplash. That’s not even the hardest part, Swan said.

“[They] would always put it in a braid at lunch time, and I’d throw it over my shoulder like a little hair baby or do like a hair scarf,” Swan said. “If we were shooting in maybe Canada or Antarctica, it would be amazing because it would be a source of warmth. But when you’re shooting in Hawaii, the last thing you want is a hair blanket wrapped around you at all times.”

She’s not complaining though. “Honestly, when your struggle is carrying a Medusa wig for Marvel while shooting in Hawaii, you live with it,” Swan said.


6. MEDUSA HAS MANY BATTLE POSES

When it’s not weighing her head down, Medusa’s hair comes to life and lashes out against attackers. The first time you get to see Medusa fight with her hair, Swan held perfectly still and let the hair do all the work.

“It’s not about her body anymore,” Swan said. “It’s more like her body becomes her spine and her hair becomes her arms. So when you fight, usually your spine goes quite rigid and it depends on where you go into a stance. For her, the stance is to support her hair because her hair is about to do magical spectacular things.”

That’s not Medusa’s only move though. You’ll see her spring into action too.

“There’s lots of other movements,” Swan continued. “She’s a trained fighter so it depends on what’s going on. In those specific scenes when she’s being attacked, she doesn’t see them as a complete threat. As you can tell, she just handles them one by one like this. If it were something that was an army or another race coming in, you would see a lot more movement from her. Whereas this was sort of like a joke to her.”


7. INHUMANS IS FOR KIDS

There’ve been many dark and gritty comic book movies, and the Marvel shows on Netflix, but this one is for kids. Tell a five-year-old that there are superheroes living on the moon, and that’s gonna make them happy.

“A lot of it is making the worlds of children just that much bigger and brighter,” Swan said. “It’s really incredible when you think about that. It’s a really unique opportunity to be able to bring that to them. It is magical hair that can fight people.”

But there are some scenes that require parental guidance. Medusa and Black Bolt have a love scene.

“Maybe skip the first five minutes if you’re a certain age and younger,” Swan said. “It’s done in a loving, playful way.”

Kids will love Lockjaw too. Mount says he provides the laughsk but is also pivotal in the story.

“The goofy sidekick is usually just there for comic relief,” Mount said. “What I love about this, is they found a way to make Lockjaw active in the plot because he’s so dim.”


8. IT’S NOT JUST THE COMIC BOOK

The comic books were a great source of inspiration for the cast and creators of Inhumans, but from there they had to embellish.

“You’ve got to figure out how to do it for a different medium,” Mount said. “In TV you can’t linger on those gorgeous cells. TV keeps moving and TV has to be a little more grounded in our world. It was interesting watching that process of conversion.”


Marvel’s Inhumans premieres in IMAX theaters September 1 and  begins its network run at 8 p.m. ET on September 29 on ABC.

Tag Cloud

Comedy TBS DirecTV Paramount LGBT Walt Disney Pictures San Diego Comic-Con composers MCU IFC game show toy story video period drama CMT Tarantino theme song SundanceTV cooking serial killer Britbox ABC Family Black History Month sequel miniseries Acorn TV zero dark thirty south america Television Academy First Reviews DC streaming service anthology Paramount Network romance indie Quiz Nickelodeon Mystery Infographic The Arrangement werewolf CBS Peacock cults latino Calendar harry potter Sundance GoT Amazon Prime robots RT21 adaptation blaxploitation Watching Series dc E! Apple TV Plus space renewed TV shows Tubi ABC The Witch spider-man Cartoon Network Travel Channel CNN MTV 2020 Pop Vudu WarnerMedia Avengers teaser series Superheroe psycho YouTube Fox News TCA 2017 golden globes USA Network Emmys movies Disney+ Disney Plus 2016 SXSW doctor who Trailer screenings 007 Red Carpet Holiday Amazon BBC America Mary Tyler Moore award winner 71st Emmy Awards name the review mutant Marvel Studios thriller Western GIFs justice league adventure Comic Book Sundance Now RT History cars supernatural cancelled TV shows richard e. Grant Sundance TV directors psychological thriller christmas movies Musicals Rock Brie Larson Apple TV+ Family American Society of Cinematographers documentary Anna Paquin Trivia HBO Max Superheroes CW Seed Endgame Sony Pictures Marvel Ghostbusters sports 2018 First Look Pirates Netflix Christmas movies OneApp USA The CW Teen Spring TV FX on Hulu Emmy Nominations PaleyFest X-Men Interview Funimation YouTube Premium Christmas Fall TV Valentine's Day hist hispanic Crackle Turner festivals reboot PBS animated Stephen King Countdown zombie FOX unscripted TIFF cops Polls and Games spy thriller Set visit historical drama Esquire spain Trophy Talk Schedule Pop TV ESPN Amazon Prime Video TV Land Winners New York Comic Con cinemax YouTube Red versus Marvel Television A&E Starz Mary Poppins Returns CBS All Access witnail Hallmark Turner Classic Movies Binge Guide Elton John Star Trek History halloween DC Comics Lifetime Christmas movies diversity slashers scary movies TCA Winter 2020 Dark Horse Comics Shudder Arrowverse Rom-Com game of thrones Horror TV renewals Cannes Lucasfilm natural history war Extras Awards Tour Black Mirror Martial Arts Tumblr Music casting SDCC DC Universe Opinion crime comiccon Baby Yoda 20th Century Fox mockumentary quibi Photos Biopics Hulu Nat Geo TruTV nature Lionsgate E3 jamie lee curtis children's TV aliens TCA Marathons TCM VH1 Drama elevated horror Character Guide Animation TLC ITV finale blockbuster Kids & Family dogs movie free movies boxoffice breaking bad Chilling Adventures of Sabrina sag awards Reality biography 21st Century Fox police drama medical drama batman Film Festival Disney Channel green book Epix Disney streaming service anime screen actors guild dceu National Geographic technology Universal Columbia Pictures what to watch Certified Fresh Masterpiece Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt DGA Chernobyl docudrama Year in Review dragons tv talk Creative Arts Emmys dramedy Spectrum Originals 2015 disaster NBC Pet Sematary Pride Month 45 Lifetime Country politics The Purge Star Wars comic Syfy Song of Ice and Fire AMC Academy Awards Hallmark Christmas movies crossover Box Office 2019 romantic comedy Mary poppins franchise Best and Worst 24 frames Grammys cancelled television Toys cancelled canceled Super Bowl FXX cancelled TV series kids Oscars spanish language strong female leads Sneak Peek HBO Discovery Channel Comedy Central Musical Mudbound political drama 2017 television OWN joker binge Disney ratings Rocketman canceled TV shows social media Adult Swim travel Tomatazos stand-up comedy A24 facebook Netflix FX Nominations Spike cartoon cats Showtime GLAAD talk show Shondaland sitcom true crime President streaming Classic Film transformers BET WGN See It Skip It Captain marvel Summer ghosts Premiere Dates Action vampires Winter TV Amazon Studios Freeform TV Crunchyroll comics zombies Sci-Fi Writers Guild of America Ovation Election Women's History Month singing competition Ellie Kemper TNT Cosplay Warner Bros. Fantasy independent crime thriller Holidays APB IFC Films Thanksgiving revenge Apple book Film Comics on TV Disney Plus Pixar crime drama based on movie NYCC Mindy Kaling MSNBC The Walking Dead universal monsters discovery El Rey Video Games foreign BBC Heroines Bravo science fiction spinoff Food Network Rocky VICE rotten movies we love Reality Competition YA Podcast reviews Logo LGBTQ Awards