Jupiter’s Legacy has several heroic casualties in its first season, so let’s take a look at the course of each character’s life (and death).
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Jupiter’s Legacy Season 1, which is now streaming on Netflix.
One of the most prominent themes of season 1 of Jupiter’s Legacy is whether or not to follow “The Code,” a set of guiding principles created by Sheldon to govern the behavior of his fellow superheroes. The most particular point of discussion is about his first principle, “We do not kill.” The abstract point of whether the death sentence is an ethical punishment is not really in doubt, and the show focuses more on whether deadly force is justified as a means of self-defense. Sheldon’s restriction against lethal force is a good way to prevent heroes from acting as judges, jurors, and executioners, but it also results in a lot of hits thrown.
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Those blows lead to disaster multiple times throughout the season, as the heroes find themselves battling villains who don’t share their scruples. Let’s analyze each superhero death in Jupiter’s legacy in more detail and shed light on characters who might otherwise be forgotten.
Flaming fist, outdated and tectonic
Flaming Fist (Briggs), Phase Out (Vera), and Tectonic (Barry) are three different heroes who join the fight against Blackstar early in the show, but are quickly dropped by the muscular titan. Briggs’ introductions are very similar to his comic book appearance, as he stays out of the fight with the intention of appearing only at the end to share in the glory. But unlike in the comics, his plan is ruined when Blackstar’s comet form crashes into him and the fight begins in earnest. Various Union members assault Blackstar from all angles, but he beheads Vera and kills Barry with the same blast of energy.
It’s unclear what Vera is like outside of that fight, but a brief flashback at the trio’s funeral shows her and Barry laughing with Brandon. Barry himself is given a lot more depth, mainly because he has a scene with Brandon the night before the fight. He tries to convince Brandon to get drunk with him, but clarifies that he just wants his friend not to put his life on hold for his role as the successor to the utopian. Brandon seems to appreciate the gesture and the two share a heartfelt moment. This leads to a gloomy backdrop for Brandon’s funeral speech, which ends with him comforting Barry’s widow.
Ghostbeam (Janna) gets a much more developed bow than her deceased teammates, as she manages to stick around for most of the season. She interacts with Chloe several times, first at a nightclub where she is the only Union member who refuses to drink alcoholic beverages. Her other teammates give her a hard time for this, referring to her as “the hall supervisor” and “Sugar and Spice”. His intentions stem from a desire to act as a role model for the rest of the world, but his pleas for others to do the same fall on deaf ears. She shows up at Chloe’s apartment later to help her avoid the aftermath of that bender, but is expelled when Chloe refuses her help.
She dies in the sixth episode of the show, as the ongoing events precipitated by Brandon killing Blackstar reach a boiling point. A villain tries to kill one of her teammates, and she has to stop another hero from attacking in retaliation. She only succeeds with Grace’s help, and the two discuss The Code’s merits later in the episode. Even with everything that has happened, Janna remains in favor of The Code and reiterates that no matter how bad things get, superheroes must serve as role models for good behavior. However, this comes back to bite her later in the episode when she is killed by the villain Baryon. His last words as he bled to death in Grace’s arms are about how he stuck to the Code, while dying in defense of his principles.
Raikou is the odd woman in terms of overall connection to the season’s themes, as her more heroic counterparts die in service of the question of whether heroes should kill. Rather, she is killed by her own father, Brainwave. She is introduced when Brainwave declares his intentions to unearth memories from the subconscious of the dead clone of Blackstar, as Grace demands that he obtain reinforcements to reduce the danger. However, the danger itself is unjustified, as all Brainwave encounters is a fabrication of his own hand, intended to incriminate Skyfox and amplify tensions between other members of the Union.
His character is largely true to the general idea of his comic book predecessor: a psychic assassin whose services are available to the highest bidder. But in the comics, she is killed by the copycat villain Repro, while in the show, she is too close to the truth and only manages to reveal what she discovered to Brainwave himself while trying to blackmail him. While he shares his psychic powers, he soon discovers that he is no match for them, and the entirety of their conversation is one of his mental constructs. Brainwave kills Raikou inside that construction and slits his throat in the real world as he vanishes.
Netflix’s Jupiter’s Legacy stars Josh Duhamel as The Utopian, Ben Daniels as Brainwave, Leslie Bibb as Lady Liberty, Elena Kampouris as Chloe Sampson, Andrew Horton as Brandon Sampson, Mike Wade as The Flare, Anna Akana as Raikou and Matt Lanter as Skyfox. Season 1 is now available on Netflix.
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