‘The Umbrella Academy’: How is Luther Different in the TV Series Versus the Graphic Novels?

The Umbrella Academy on Netflix is based on the graphic novels of the same name by Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba. While the show kept a lot of the characteristics of each Hargreeves siblings, there are a few things the series changed. 

Luther, played by Tom Hopper, has some of the most notable differences. Here are some of the things the show changed about the character.

Luther (Tom Hopper) in a production still from 'The Umbrella Academy' Season 2.
Luther | Christos Kalohoridis/Netflix

Luther gets the body of a martian gorilla differently in the comics

In The Umbrella Academy Season 1, we see most of Luther’s origin story. When the series opens, he’s living on the moon and is really muscular. He towers over most people, but some could just chalk that up to a growth spurt in his teenage years. We later find out that Luther was injured on a mission, and Reginald, his adoptive father, uses some sort of ape serum to save him. The serum caused him to grow and also covered his body in hair. His body becomes more ape-like.

The graphic novel’s version of Luther’s transformation is a bit different. Luther’s head is physically attached to the body of a martian gorilla. This gives him all of the same powers the alien gorilla had. Plus, the gorilla’s body is blue.

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Luther has a twin in the comics

We know all of the Hargreeves siblings were born on October 1st. However, one woman birthed two of the children. In the graphic novels, Luther and Five are twins. Considering their sizes, it’s giving us major Danny Devito and Arnold Schwarzenegger Twins vibes. The television series hasn’t addressed the potential of the two being twins yet. Of course, there’s still time. 

Fans got a glimpse of how a power struggle could work between Luther and Five in The Umbrella Academy Season 2. In season 2 Luther keeps Five in line so Five can talk to another version of himself. We’re interested in seeing more of that dynamic and doubt we’re alone.

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Luther’s hair is white in ‘The Umbrella Academy’ graphic novels, and he isn’t shy about his body

We’ve already discussed how the graphic novels have Luther’s head physically attached to a martian gorilla’s body. While the tv version of the character keeps his body covered up, and he’s larger than his siblings, it isn’t enough for the siblings to suspect something weird is going on beneath the trench coat. 

Luther’s character in the graphic novels walks around bare-chested. He’s proud of his body and the strength it gives him. Plus, he’s enormous. Not something someone could explain away by saying they’d just been working out more.

A mechanical contraption is what attaches Luther’s head to the gorilla’s body. This is what keeps him alive. Minor differences include that in The Umbrella Academy comics, Luther is clean-shaven and sports some white hair. 

The Umbrella Academy Season 2 left viewers with a pretty serious cliffhanger. After saving the world from yet another apocalypse, the siblings return home to a timeline where they don’t even exist. In their place is The Sparrow Academy. 

Season 3 of the show recently finished filming, which means fans don’t have too much longer to wait. We’ll hopefully get to reunite with the Hargreeves again sometime in 2022.