In the second episode of The Umbrella Academy‘s third season, “World’s Biggest Ball of Twine,” we meet Viktor Hargreeves, Allison is met with devastating news, Luther is kidnapped by the Sparrows, and Klaus makes a disturbing discovery while in pursuit of his birth mother.
Worried after not hearing back from Claire, Allison goes home to see her. Unfortunately, the little girl that’s in her daughter’s bedroom isn’t Claire. Patrick and another woman run into the room. Defeated, Allison returns to Hotel Obsidian.
Vanya finds a book in the hotel and flips to a page that refers to the Umbrellas as the Kennedy Six, a group of communists. She sees that Sissy died on October 1, 1989. She reflects back on something that Sissy said to her, “You don’t even notice the box that you’re in until someone comes along and lets you out,” as she approaches the hotel barber.
In the lobby, Five, Klaus, and Diego are discussing Lila and Stanley when Vanya approaches with a new haircut. After casually correcting Diego when he refers to him as Vanya, he corrects him and says, “It’s Viktor, […] it’s who I’ve always been.” His brothers are all quick to accept the news supportively, and Viktor discusses his meeting with Marcus and his plans to get the briefcase back. However, Five isn’t interested in messing with time anymore. There’s finally no doomsday or apocalypse looming over them. He’s retired.
Despite what Five may believe, trouble is certainly brewing in the basement of the Academy. Another pulse ripples out from the ball of energy, and the lobsters in the tank in the hotel lobby disappear.
Five and Klaus are baffled to find out that Stan’s mother is Lila. Diego has a fresh haircut… and so does Vanya. Vanya corrects Diego and says, “It’s Viktor. It’s who I’ve always been.” Viktor explains that Marcus agreed to handover the briefcase, though his brothers aren’t convinced it’s actually going to happen that way. [Need to rewatch this scene]. Five makes a point that he’s retired. They’re done messing with time. Because there’s finally no doomsday, no apocalypse. Another pulse ripples out from the pulsating ball of energy in the Hargreeves mansion (name for the house).
Despite the fact that she’s still upset over Claire, Allison insists on joining Viktor when he goes to meet up with Marcus to get the briefcase. On the way, Viktor tells her how being with Sissy opened up something in him and showed him that he’d never be free by hiding from who he really is. After losing her, he realized he can’t live in that box anymore.
As they sit in the diner waiting for Marcus, Allison becomes overwhelmed by memories of her daughter. She steps outside for air and sees a man with a briefcase and headphones. When she notices that he’s staring at her, she begins to follow after him, but she eventually loses him.
Luther wakes up at the Academy after being kidnapped by Ben, Fei, Sloane, and Christopher, and though he’s initially on the defensive, he calms when he sits down to eat with the Sparrows. They all introduce themselves, and when Luther asks where Marcus is, he finds out why they took him. Marcus disappeared, and the Sparrows believe that the Umbrellas kidnapped him. Luther offers to go back to Hotel Obsidian to talk to his siblings and see what’s going on, but they won’t let him leave.
Despite the situation, Luther manages to settle in amongst the Sparrows quite comfortably. Given the difficult relationship between the Umbrellas, he enjoys how close the Sparrows are as a family. Sloane spends time with him and flirts with him, and while he likes the attention at first, he eventually becomes suspicious that she’s trying to honey trap him.
The Sparrows eventually agree to let Luther go home (with a tote bag full of goodies). However, after he walks out, Sloane calls out to him and floats him up to her bedroom window. She apologizes to him for earlier and explains that although they were being watched by her family, she meant everything she said. Luther kisses her.
Lila tries to jump to Berlin, but she’s furious to find that her briefcase won’t work. After spying on the Sparrows, Lila copies Fei’s powers and uses one of her birds to swipe the Umbrellas’ briefcase from the basement of the Academy.
An eventful trip for ear drops
Diego talks Stan to the store to get ear drops, and they run into Alphonso and Jayme. He learns how Alphonso’s powers work the hard way, getting injured himself for each blow that he deals against the other man. Stan tries to help him, but he gets hurt as well. Diego and Stan begin chucking random items at them in retaliation before they eventually retreat.
A road trip with Five and Klaus
Five eventually gives in and agrees to join Klaus on a road trip, but he’s not pleased when he discovers that Klaus has roped him into another scheme instead of a relaxing vacation full of odd and zany roadside attractions. They’re going to Pennsylvania to find Klaus’ birth mother, and he wants Five to be there for emotional support. Klaus found his mom’s information in Reginald’s office, and the address leads them to an Amish community.
Klaus asks a woman where he can find Rachel Herschberger, but a man approaches him and threatens him, forcing him to leave. He runs into the woman in the woods afterward, and she explains that Rachel died on October 1, 1989. The Amish end up finding Klaus again and chase after him. When he gets back to the car, he sees that Five has been drawing calculations all over the windows. The woman frantically finds Klaus again and shoves a book in his hands, telling him that his mother’s death was unusual. And there were others. As they’re driving away, Klaus is flipping through the book, and he finds disturbing news.
When they return to Hotel Obsidian, Five and Klaus share their findings with Diego, Viktor, and Allison. They explain that all of their mothers died on October 1, 1989 … before they were born. When they jumped back to the future, they created a time paradox. A grandfather paradox.