In the world of the series Extraordinary, out today on Hulu, having superpowers is the status quo. Women who never age, teenagers with Thor-like strength, and men who can make objects appear from their ass like a 3-D printer all live harmoniously in an English metropolis and presumably elsewhere across the globe.
They’re not all heroes or villains. Most behave like normal civilians, using their powers to impress partners, get jobs, and/or do bizarre favors. Meanwhile, adults who lack superabilities—like the show’s main protagonist—live lives of insecurity. They face frequent judgment, if not exactly marginalization. Compare it to being a grown-up in society who can’t drive, find employment, or is chronically single. The pilot even draws a parallel between powerless people and those who struggle with infertility, as we learn about superpower “discovery clinics.”
Being powerless is one of several dilemmas facing 24-year-old Irish native Jen Regan (Máiréad Tyers) in the series. We meet her during a corporate job interview, where a professional woman forces her to answer all of her questions truthfully via mind control. “I’m afraid I might be a bit racist,” Jen replies, before covering her mouth. After vomiting a slew of embarrassing answers—including that she has yet to receive a power—she’s hit with a big whammy. “What makes you special?” the woman asks, already unimpressed. Jen is left speechless.