So it all comes down to this! Wolfe has escaped and he’s on the hunt for the Power-ful kids who used his blood as a narcotic! The Powers division is at a loss on how to deal with the monster! And Walker is the only guy who can save the day… with a little help from each of his friends, of course. The first season of Powers comes to a close with a confident and satisfying finale that offers some decent action, a few solid character beats, some unexpected plot contortions, and a gut-punch finalé that I did not see coming. (Fans of the source material probably saw it coming.)
Yep, it’s time for a battle royale brawl between the seemingly unstoppable Wolfe and the Power-less but very crafty Walker, but much of the fun in the final episode lies in the logistics. We’ve seen countless superhero stories in which “the whole gang” gets together to do battle against a mega-powerful foe, but Powers peeks behind the scenes of these epic altercations and approaches its “crazier” moments with a cleverly procedural approach. Between the police, Powers Division, Triphammer and his endlessly helpful “drainer” devices, heroic moments from Zora, Retro Girl, Pilgrim, Calista, Walker, and even a great moment from the formerly disgraced Johnny Royalle, we get the idea that it takes a whole lot of work to track down (let alone destroy) a big-time super-villain.
And while our heroes are finally able to end Wolfe’s reign of Power-devouring mayhem, their victory comes at a pretty steep price: Zora ends up horribly injured, Walker is ultimately unable to reacquire his own Powers, Calista looks like a time-bomb ready to explode with unchecked super-skills; and, despite earning all of the credit for putting Wolfe down, Johnny Royalle is more miserable than ever.
The big battle is suitably entertaining, but as is often the case with this show, the aftermath moments in which “super” heroes have to deal with real-life issues like guilt, depression, and annoying things like due process are even more interesting. Plus it looks like a huge file full of Power Division secrets are about to hit the internet, and that’s simply not the sort of stuff you see Thor or Batman having to deal with.
Worst of all, Krispin’s “Kaotic Chic” anti-Power campaign has claimed the life of one of our coolest heroines… and we’ll just have to wait for Season 2 to see how that tragedy pans out. And given how Powers‘ first season has been a rather cool concoction of something old, something new, and something unexpectedly dark, cynical, and weird, I’ll be happy to tune in for another ten episodes. Although not without a few slow spots, plot holes, or budgetary constraints scattered across a few episodes, on the whole Powers proves to be a pretty nifty take on the endlessly interesting idea of superheroes living in the “real” world.