Ellen Page stars as Vanya Hargreeves in the Netflix original series The Umbrella Academy. The show’s second season recently premiered on the streaming platform, placing Vanya (and her siblings) up against an imminent apocalypse once more. While struggling to save humankind and keep history intact, they must also combat some sibling tensions and interpersonal turmoil.
The second season of The Umbrella Academy begins with the Hargreeves children spread out throughout Texas in the 1960s. Many of the plotlines that come forward as a result of the season’s origin point parallel today’s societal struggles and conflicts, in Page’s eyes.
Ellen Page on how ‘The Umbrella Academy’ reflects today’s world
During an interview with Cosmopolitan, Page was asked to comment on the somewhat ironic fact that the show focuses on an apocalypse during a time that many would consider apocalyptic. Page noted:
The show explores issues during the civil rights movement, horrific examples of police brutality, the way peaceful protesters and Black people are treated, and how that hasn’t changed. I think it will be evident for a wider range of people [who are] more directly seeing what’s going on and what our society really is, in terms of inequality: white supremacy, anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and laws.Cosmopolitan
Page explains that, because the show takes place in the 1960s — amid racial inequality, police brutality, social injustice, and more — it operates on two levels. The 1960s serves the show’s narrative arc and its characters, while also placing a mirror before contemporary society, asking viewers to analyze how far the world has truly come. Page continued on, noting:
Then with COVID-19 mixed in and the impacts of climate change already happening—this is all what’s in so many people’s consciousness right now. And this season really reflects a lot of those things.Cosmopolitan
The second season of The Umbrella Academy, whether intentionally or not, comments on the fact that the world is going through something unheard of at the moment. Something that leaves the future unpredictable. And, while, nuclear warfare may not be on the horizon (as is the case in The Umbrella Academy), the moment undoubtedly feels quite apocalyptic.
Not to mention, the social structures and laws currently coming under examination have come under examination before, all the way back in the 1960s. The season works to amplify today’s issues via a glimpse into the past.
How is Ellen Page handling the pandemic?
As for Page, though her life could definitely be better, she is handling the COVID-19 pandemic well. She explained:
I’m doing fine. At no point have I been like, “It’s hard to stay inside.” It’s totally fine. [I’m also] just wondering how people can even possibly be getting through this, in many ways—that’s what definitely weighs the heaviest. I try to do what I can in my own way, publicly using a platform and then [doing] other things privately.Cosmopolitan
Page is staying in, and she’s doing her best to use her platform for positive change. She’s also implementing certain life changes that she chooses to keep to herself.