Tonight's episode of The Gifted brought out the bad guys by introducing two major, longstanding X-Men villain groups.
SPOILERS for The Gifted Season One, Episode 11, "3 X 1" follow.
The episode "3 X 1" kicked off with a flashback to Blink's past. In this flashback, Blink is on a date to the movies when she encounters the Purifiers. The Purifiers spraypainted the mutant slur "
In the Marvel Comics universe, the Purifiers were started by the Reverend William Stryker. They are religious zealots who believe all mutants are the spawn of Satan. It is their mission to destroy mutants wherever and whenever they can.
The Purifiers in The Gifted where the same cross-themed outfits as their comic book counterparts, but appear more as a typical hate group like the KKK than the technologically-powered villains of the comics. Of course, that may change in time. Blink insinuates that a US Senator is a full-fledged Purifier and Roderick Campbell is bringing his Hound program to Washington very soon.
The episode also catches up with the Stepford Cuckoos after their debut in the midseason finale. They are reporting back to another major X-Men villain group, the Hellfire Club.
The Hellfire Club was previously mentioned in connection with Andy and Lauren's great-grandparents, the terrorists Fenris, who were members.
The Hellfire Club is an organization that has long opposed the X-Men. The group, in particular, their nefarious Inner Circle, was involved in "The Dark Phoenix Saga."
The Cuckoos, in the comics, are clones of Emma Frost, a former White Queen of the Hellfire Club. It makes sense then for The Gifted to use the sisters as agents of the Club even though they have never been in the comics.
The Cuckoos also revealed that Polaris' biological father was a member of the Hellfire Club's Inner Circle. Based on the comics, this is true. Polaris' father is Magneto and he was the White King fo the Hellfire Club.
The Hellfire Club's Inner Circle has traditionally been self-serving and included members who were not mutants and even built Sentinels. This version of the Hellfire Club seems to be a bit more of a mutant-centric group, considered mutant terrorists by many. We'll see how that holds up in the finale.
Interestingly, The Gifted was developed after a pitched television show centered on the Hellfire Club was scrapped.
The Gifted returns for its two-hour season finale Monday, January 15th on FOX.