The review embargo for Hulu's Helstrom lifted Friday morning and just over a day later, the show's initial Rotten Tomatoes score has surfaced. As of now, just six reviews have been submitted to the review aggregator and they're split right down the middle — three positive and three negative. That means using some simple calculus, one can figure out the Tomatometer is sitting at a divisive 50-percent.
It's far too early in the process for the site to provide its critic's consensus, but judging by the reviews submitted — those with a favorable view on the show praised it for its dark tone and character-driven plot while those with a dismissive review critiqued the show for its disconnection from the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Though more reviews are sure to come in, a 50-percent "Rotten" rating would put Helstrom just above Iron Fist (37-percent) and Inhumans (11-percent) towards the bottom of reviewed Marvel Television properties. Even with those properties, the TomatoMeter — a metric determined by professional critics — and the Audience Scores still don't quite match up. With Inhumans, the audience-given score hovers at a paltry 44-percent while Iron Fist's Audience Score is much better, sitting at 72-percent.
"In another universe, the show's focus on shadowy magics and ugly family drama might make it one of Marvel's standouts, but here the series barely manages to make a strong argument in defense of its own existence," io9's Charles Pulliam-Moore writes in his "Rotten" review.
Geeks of Color's Ferdosa Abdi was much more positive, suggesting the episodes available for review (the first five of ten) provide potential for Marvle's spookiest show yet. "The first five episodes are promising, laying the foundation of an interesting battle yet to take place between the siblings and their father. Hopefully, the final five episodes deliver on its promises," Abdi writes.
Written by Paul Zbyszewski, Helstrom stars Tom Austen (Daimon Helstrom), Sydney Lemmon (Ana Helstrom), Elizabeth Marvel (Victoria Helstrom), Robert Wisdom (Caretaker), Ariana Guerra (Grabriella Rossetti), June Carryl (Dr. Louise Hastings), and Alain Uy (Chris Yen).1comments
After some corporate restructuring earlier this year, Helstrom is the last live-action series produced by Marvel Television. From here on out, all shows will be developed and produced by Kevin Feige and his outfit at Marvel Studios. The first ten minutes of the horror show can be seen here.
Helstrom hits Hulu on October 16th.