Alexa, play “Run Away with Me” by Carly Rae Jepsen because Marvel’s Runaways is back. The show’s third and final season is now available to stream on Hulu. And you know what that means? More adventures with our favorite teenaged lesbian super couple. If you don’t want to trudge through the heterosexual drama for some Karolina Dean/Nico Minoru content, have no fear because we did all the hard work for you. Here’s the first part of a lesbian recap of Marvel’s Runaways: Season Three.
Warning! There will be spoilers ahead.
Here’s What you Missed
First, let’s catch you up on the previous two seasons. A group of teens found out their parents are part of an evil cult that was responsible for the deaths of 17 teenagers. Those teenagers were used to feed an alien in a pod, oh and that alien also happens to be Karolina’s birth father. Our rainbow warrior, Karolina finally realizes she’s a lesbian and begins her relationship with goth witch Nico. Everything was going smoothly until an alien, Xavin, arrives claiming it was her destiny to marry Karolina. Uh oh. Meanwhile, Nico had to kill Karolina’s evil alien father while the others blew up an alien spaceship. In doing so, the aliens jumped into the bodies of their parents. Chase, his mother, and Karolina were captured and held in tubes under Chase’s old home. And that’s what you missed on
Episode One: “Smoke and Mirrors”
The episode starts with Chase having an action hero moment. So, we can skip that and get right to the important part. Karolina and Nico at their wedding.
Or is it? Next next thing we know, Nico is standing in a creepy meadow shouting for Karolina. She has a conversation with a sexy witch about her powers. It was all just a dream. So, Nico, the remaining runaways, and Xavin plan a rescue.
As it turns out, the KaroNico wedding was not real, but simply the algorithm showing her what she’s always wanted. And all the lesbians let out a collective “aww.” Nico manages to enter the algorithm to speak with Karolina and we’re treated to a sweet reunion. Nico assures her she’s the real deal and that she will come back to get her out.
Episode Two: “The Great Escape”
Our little power goth, Nico struggles with self doubt. She fears she’ll lose control and hurt others. Despite this, she and fellow runaway, Alex, find the alien book, the abstract they need to free Karolina and the others.
Meanwhile, Karolina is still stuck in her dream world, but it’s become more of a nightmare. She finds dream-Nico huddled by a tree, in serious pain. Karolina knows her alien father, now in the body of Chase’s father, is doing this to punish her for defying him. He demands she come with him when he and the other aliens leave Earth. She refuses. He forces her to watch Nico die.
The real Nico has another conversation with the sexy witch. How she’s able to concentrate when she’s eye level with her cleavage, we just don’t know. But the sexy witch has other plans. She’s goading Nico to do exactly what she’s afraid of — lose control. Nico wakes up from her dream just in time for her and Alex to snatch the abstract, but she loses her staff in the process.
Back to Karolina’s dream-turned-nightmare, Chase and his mother have figured out that they need to stop thinking about the events in their dreams in order to find a way out of the algorithm. Karolina just can’t forget having to watch Nico die. But she manages enough to bypass the algorithm and interact with computers in the waking world. How was she able to do that? I’m assuming the power of lesbianism. Nico finds herself in a fight with Jonah, Karolina’s alien dad. But without her staff, this is an old-fashioned brawl. Nico may be tiny, but she packs a punch. Jonah’s down and out. And KaroNico are reunited for real this time.
When they get back to their hideout, Xavin accuses Nico of being possessed by the alien. Nico actually agrees with her.
Episode Three: “Lord of Lies”
The episode begins with a gloomy flashback of Nico’s sister, Amy’s, funeral. Nico has never forgotten about her sister. And neither should we…
In the waking world, suspicion builds tension within the group over who is possessed by the alien. There’s some heterosexual drama. But more importantly, Karolina and Nico finally get a moment alone to rest. They talk about what’s been going on. Nico mentions Karolina’s dream in the algorithm. She says she’s not the girl in her fantasy. Karolina is quick to reassure her that she doesn’t need to be, that she wants the real Nico. Is there anything more reassuring than your girlfriend telling you she loves you exactly as you are? Perhaps not. Our heroes seem to think so, too. But just before their make-out session gets too intense, some magical nonsense cuts it short.
It’s enough to spook Nico. She takes the staff and leaves Karolina in a huff. She wants to burn it, but sexy witch woman is back at it again, trying to convince her not to. Nico doesn’t listen and burns it anyway. After this, Nico and the runaways head to her old home. She eyes the witch woman in a photo. Or did she…
Her father catches her just as she’s leaving to ask him about this woman. He mentions she was a friend of her mother’s. Nico abruptly leaves her father. Or was he… He was the sexy witch woman all along!
Following this, all the runaways except Alex decide to see who is possessed by the alien once and for all. Nico isn’t the alien. It was Alex all along.
Episode Four: “Rite of Thunder”
Alien-Alex kidnaps Karolina’s mom, Leslie, and that’s just homophobic. While Karolina is obviously distraught, Nico steps up and comes with a plan to save her mom. We love to see supportive girlfriends. Lets not forget about Xavin, who is still convinced it’s her destiny to marry Karolina. Molly takes the time to explain love to her. Because of this, Xavin realizes she doesn’t love Karolina at all. The thought that the prophecy might not be true makes her cry, which is huge for someone who has no understanding of human emotions.
Elsewhere, sexy witch lady pulls a Bloody Mary and talk to Nico through a mirror. She tells their fates are intertwined whether or not she likes it. And that despite burning the staff, its power isn’t gone. Nico doesn’t have time for this. Her girlfriend’s mom is in trouble.
They find Leslie… and Alien Alex. Nico and Karolina tag team to go after him. They split up to flank him. Nico finds him just as he’s about to escape, but he talks her out of killing him by using Karolina as leverage. He escapes… When the runaways return to Leslie, she’s given birth to Karolin’s little sister. It’s then that Xavin realizes perhaps the prophecy didn’t speak of romantic love, but maternal love instead. Leslie asks her to care for the baby and get her off planet.
In other news, Nico gets a broadsword. All lesbians deserve swords, but that’s for another time. While Karolina watches her practice with it, she makes a comment about hot it is. It’s true and she should say it. Unfortunately, hetero drama interrupts their kiss.
After all that, the runaways decide to finally confront the aliens. Nico gets into a sword fight with her alien possessed mother. But eventually, she needs to resort to magic to save all her friends. Nico then pulls the staff, which if you recall she burned, out of her chest. And with one spell, she makes the aliens disappear.
Episode Five: “Enter the Dreamland”
Well, it turns out Nico’s spell sent all of them into an alternate reality. Considering the title of this episode, that takes total sense. In this reality, we find out that sexy witch lady is actually Morgan Le Fay. They’re separated and don’t have any of their powers. Nico’s grandmother and aunts confront her. Meanwhile, Karolina sees the 17 teenagers killed by her mother and the alien death cult. Nico’s grandmother nearly kills her, but she’s rescued by a mysterious masked stranger. That stranger turns out to be her sister… or something resembling her sister. But Amy doesn’t remember Nico at all. As it turns out, this alternate reality is something of a nightmare realm where all the runaways are trapped in their own nightmarish hellscape.
Meanwhile, the 17 sacrificed teenagers keep Karolina captive. Today, she’s the sacrifice. The teens won’t tell her who she is being sacrificed to. But she soon finds out. A Baba Yaga looking character appears from the darkness. She’s chained to a corpse she drags behind her. And when the figure reveals her face, Karolina is shocked to find that it’s Nico.
It seems Nico still harbors guilt over having to kill Karolina’s father, thus the corpse she chained to her back. But remember, this is Karolina’s nightmare realm. When Karolina frees her from the chains, she finds out the real burden was never over killing her father. It was the idea that Nico’s darkness would subject her to a lifetime if solitude. Karolina’s worst nightmare is Nico being consumed by her darkness and being overcome by loneliness.
A dyke needs a minute after this one, okay? Karolina’s brightest hopes and darkest nightmare both involve Nico.
After escaping their nightmare realms, we get a KaroNico reunion. But, Karolina doesn’t mention her nightmare. Nico opens another portal to get them home. What felt like a few hours to them was actually 6 months in the real world.
Stay tuned for the second part of our Runaways recap!