There’s a moment here where Grace, in the present, privately calls out Sheldon about how he is using the Code to take free will away, ironically since the Union developed the Code to do the opposite. That’s a good point there. We’ve seen Sheldon publicly talk back, claim certain things about what people should see as right and wrong, and ignore it when people, including his wife, say how life is more complicated now and they may need to rethink things, something he adamantly refuses to do.
You know what, though, the more I hear people say “things are more complicated now,” the more I think that may not be the case because life was always complicated and we just like to pretend to ourselves otherwise.
That may be something the comic version of this story got right that this series may not, at least not yet. There are plenty of hints here and there, and that’s not counting whenever Fitz says something about how he’s discriminated against due to his race or the way the series is hinting the new guy Richard is gay, but the past sequences are more interested in showing how these people gained superpowers in the first place and not so much how complex the world is. Sheldon certainly has a very black-and-white world view, but no one else really does, especially Walter.
And the funny thing about Walter is he never quite fit in with the others, like, at all. Not in the past or the present. It’s more obvious in the past. He brings more luggage to the mysterious island than the others, and he may be the only one with a weapon (Sheldon’s machete doesn’t quite count since it’s for clearing brush). Likewise, Walter is the only one who won’t reminisce on the past, and he was never going to be that guy anyway. If anything, he’s still a bit bitter.
Heck, he’s the one who points out that he noticed the economic problems brewing that could have saved the family company before the stock market crash. Walter and Sheldon aren’t close, and George seems to despise him. Heck, even Fitz and Richard don’t seem overly fond of Walter.
Small problem: the island is a test (Grace figures it out) where trees sprout up behind the group to keep them from turning back and stone walls can only be breached if everyone touching them has gotten past any and all resentments that they have for each other before a portal opens to a moon of Jupiter and some weird alien tree gives everyone superpowers.
And I mean everyone since the energy backwash hits the ship they came in, somewhere off-shore, and some members of the crew seem to get the runes and such that came from the island flash across their skin.
So, yes, Walter does not fit in in the past, and knowing where this story eventually goes, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see how Walter doesn’t fit in in the present, but it’s more subtle. He’s off threatening Blackstar by himself, but he’s also got something none of the others have: a supervillain daughter.
“Supervillain” might be the wrong way to describe Raikou, but she is an assassin, and between the island stuff and her fight scene when she went all ninja on a target’s bodyguards, I suspect I know why Netflix canceled this show despite its early viewing successes.
So, Walter…he’s different from the others. Sure, the narrative is more on Sheldon, but really, Walter is someone they all should be keeping an eye on…