‘The Umbrella Academy’: What Does the Sparrow Academy Mean?

Season 2 of The Umbrella Academy was riddled with meaning. From the significance of the number “743” to the 43 sparrows that were hidden throughout the season, many fans are curious to know what the appearance of the Sparrow Academy means for the Hargreeves siblings.

[Spoiler Alert: This article contains spoilers for The Umbrella Academy Season 2.]

Robert Sheehan as Klaus, Justin H. Min as Ben, Aidan Gallagher as Number Five, Ellen Page as Vanya, Tom Hopper as Luther, David Castañeda as Diego, Emmy Raver-Lampman as Allison of 'The Umbrella Academy' Season 2 cast
Robert Sheehan as Klaus, Justin H. Min as Ben, Aidan Gallagher as Number Five, Ellen Page as Vanya, Tom Hopper as Luther, David Castañeda as Diego, Emmy Raver-Lampman as Allison on ‘The Umbrella Academy’ | Christos Kalohoridis/Netflix

The Umbrella Academy becomes the Sparrow Academy

At the end of season 2, it was revealed that the Hargreeves made it back to 2019, but something wasn’t quite right. It wasn’t the 2019 they had left behind. 

Both Sir Reginald (Colm Feore) and Ben (Justin H. Min) were alive in this alternate universe. Sir Reginald appeared to be the same, but Ben had an edgier vibe. Plus, he seemed to be the new Sparrow Academy leader — a group of superheroes, including the likes of a mysterious green cube. 

Sparrows played a major role in season 2 

As a precursor to the Sparrow Academy, sparrow symbols and imagery were used throughout season 2. 

Eagle-eyes fans found hidden sparrows on: 

  1. The letterhead on a piece of paper found on Sir Reginald’s desk. 
  2. The towels at the Handler’s (Kate Walsh) hotel. 
  3. A dumpster in the alley outside of Elliot’s (Kevin Rankin) apartment. 
  4. A shoebox in the store Allison (Emmy Raver-Lampman) and Raymond Chestnut (Yusuf Gatewood) went suit shopping. 
  5. A pamphlet Lila (Ritu Arya) was holding at the Handler’s hotel. 
  6. A folder on Elliot’s desk. 
  7. A bathroom tile. 
  8. The note the Handler gave Five (Aidan Gallagher) with the location of the Commission’s board meeting. 
  9. A note on Harlan’s (Justin Paul Kelly) desk. 
  10. The Commission’s order to kill Lila’s parents. 
  11. The tractor on the Cooper’s farm. 
  12. A safety sign in the paint warehouse Lila and Five fought in. 
  13. The banner on the Bingo table.
  14. The dairy truck the Swedes drove around. 
  15. A Kennedy poster. 
  16. A tap handle at the bar Klaus (Robert Sheehan) stopped at. 
  17. The Nu-Shol paint cans inside Dave’s (Calem MacDonald) hardware store. 
  18. Documents on Sir Reginald’s desk (next to Pogo’s drawing). 
  19. Sir Reginald’s blueprints. 
  20. A trash bag Klaus passed on his way to Five to get back to 2019. 
  21. A September 1961 calendar page in the hair salon Allison worked at. 
  22. The logo of a beer bottle. 
  23. The bridge Luther (Tom Hopper) and Old Five walked across. 
  24. Papers in Old Five’s (Sean Sullivan) briefcase. 
  25. The logo on a bottle of alcohol at Allison’s house.  
  26. The refrigerator at the cat lady’s home the Swedes took over. 
  27. The door of the liquor store Klaus visited. 
  28. Harlan’s suitcase. 
  29. The sign Five took the fire ax from to kill the Commission’s board. 
  30. A box on the Handler’s desk. 
  31. Products in the pet store. 
  32. A wall in the kitchen of the Mexican Consulate. 
  33. A mailbox outside of Carousel Burlesque. 
  34. One of Harlan’s records. 
  35. The cat lady’s vacuum. 
  36. Paper’s near Elliot’s desk radio. 
  37. The Marine bus Dave got on. 
  38. A candy box next to the Fudge Nutter in a vending machine. 
  39. The back of Jack Ruby’s (John Kapelos) television. 
  40. The Nu-Shol paints sign outside of the manufacturing plant. 
  41. Papers next to the typewriter at the police station. 
  42. The door of the Handler’s hotel room. 
  43. The payphone in the FBI building. 

What does the Sparrow Academy in ‘The Umbrella Academy’ mean? 

While fans were able to find the hidden sparrows in season 2, many haven’t been able to piece together what the Sparrow Academy means for the Hargreeves siblings. 

In an interview with Inverse, showrunner Steve Blackman didn’t give much of an explanation.

RELATED: ‘The Umbrella Academy’: Here’s Why Number Five Doesn’t Have a Name

“I will only say this given the fact that some of this is in the graphic novel, but they are new people,” Blackman said of the Sparrow Academy. “They’re not our characters. They are different people, and that’s all I can really say.”

Will the Hargreeves have an evil twin situation on their hands? Will Ben and his shadowy siblings become the villains in season 3? Fans will have to wait to find out.