College is often pitched as the time when a person really figures out who they are, a milestone handful of years where you’re no longer under the restrictions of childhood, but without the responsibilities of adulthood. Sure, it’s sometimes filled with experimentation, out-of-control partying, and plenty of new adventures, but it’s also incredibly difficult.
Young adulthood is also the time period when reality slaps us across the face harder than it ever has before, and we’re still trying to figure out how to navigate our rushing hormones — but now we have unchaperoned dorm rooms. Add superpowers that you’re still trying to make sense of to the mix, and you’ve got the heightened reality of college life in “Gen V.”
“Gen V” follows freshman blood-bender Marie Morea (Jaz Sinclair), popular metal manipulator Andre Anderson (Chance Perdomo), freshman shrink-supe Emma Meyer (Lizze Broadway), mind empath Cate Dunlap (Maddie Phillips), powerful gender-shifter Jordan Li (Derek Luh, London Thor), and the school’s star pupil, fire manipulator Luke “Golden Boy” Riordan (Patrick Schwarzenegger). Not only do they all have to contend with their star rankings as future heroes of major cities (or perhaps, even The Seven) and reckon with the fact some powers are viewed as more “valuable” than others, but they also still have to deal with garden variety “becoming an adult” drama.
Parents are still a pain in the ass and they don’t have the ability to go no-contact, many of them are only a few years out of even realizing they had powers, teachers are a hassle, making friends is hard, and social media clout chasers are even worse when the world at large is obsessed with the world of supes. Honestly, in that regard, “Gen V” shares a lot of spiritual energy with the dystopian landscape of “The Hunger Games.”