In Gen V’s penultimate episode, a sickness is spreading across Godolkin University’s campus, but it might not be the one Dean Shetty intended.
Episode seven’s “Sick” answers season-lingering questions we’ve had about the purpose of The Woods, Marie’s mysterious benefactor, and Indira Shetty’s masterplan when it comes to controlling the suped-up student body. The truth behind all the lies, betrayals, and child torture is fairly terrifying for anyone with Compound V in their blood: Shetty wants to wipe the super-abled community off the map and she’s not afraid to use a genetically-engineered plague to do it. While the group tries to stop her, they run into some familiar faces from The Boys universe — both friend and foe — eventually coming to the inevitable conclusion that if the world’s going to be saved, they’ll have to be the ones to do it.
Here are the wildest moments from Gen V episode seven, “Sick.”
While Cate lounges in Shetty’s personal residence, waiting to spring their well-planned trap on her former mentor, Marie and Jordan break into her office at school. What they’re hoping to find is concrete proof related to the experiments Shetty has been carrying out in the bowels of campus. Instead, Marie stumbles upon the tragic reason why such a brilliant and capable woman has decided supe genocide is her life’s work. Apparently, Shetty’s husband and daughter were on the flight that Homelander and Maeve brought down all those seasons ago on The Boys, and, naturally, Shetty’s just not over it. In fact, her loss has convinced her that all supes are dangerous and in need of dealing with — specifically, by infecting them with a virus that leaves them covered in boils and spitting up blood. Homelander’s hubris strikes again.
Shetty’s past trauma might explain why she’s wary of supes, but her insistence on turning Cardosa’s plague airborne so that it can spread across the globe like wildfire is so extreme, that even Grace Mallory isn’t interested in her elevator pitch. When the lady whose favorite hobby just happens to be bird watching tells you you’re crazy, you might want to listen.
Even more shocking than the fact that Andre hasn’t hit his dad up with a text after learning what he knew about The Woods is what happens to Polarity on-air during an interview to promote Victoria Neuman’s upcoming town hall. Seizures are bad, but seizures that trigger your telekinesis, destroying buildings, crushing ambulances, and knocking out paramedics with their own oxygen tanks definitely qualify as a pre-existing condition.
Early in the season, Cardosa mentioned wanting to use Marie’s blood to help create his supe-killing virus, something Shetty denied, claiming the girl had a mysterious benefactor who made her future as a lab rat all but impossible. When Neuman finally reveals that she shares a similar power to Marie’s blood-wielding whips, just who sponsored her tuition becomes clear. Even more surprising? Neuman seems to bond with Marie over their shared past — both were orphans at Red River before Neuman was adopted and both have dealt with the stigma of their abilities. Neuman knowing so much about Marie is more than a bit concerning, especially because this woman has never met another human being she didn’t immediately want to manipulate for her own gain.
The Truth About Godolkin
After Cate holds Dean Shetty’s will hostage, she forces her pseudo-mom to come clean about a lot of things — the first being the real reason God U was created. Established by a behavioral scientist (Thomas Godolkin), the school was the perfect front for testing supes as they came into their powers. Instead of the students studying, Marie and her friends are the ones that have been studied — at least enough to where Vought knows their weaknesses and how to leverage them for its own gain.
Despite being a brilliant scientist, Cardosa was not a very bright man. Once he realizes Shetty’s plan could get him killed, he makes a deal with Neuman, delivering the virus to her in the hopes that she’ll provide protection for him and his family. Of course, anytime a high-powered politician wants to meet you in a dark carport to hand off a species-decimating plague, you might want to bring some insurance. His meeting with Neuman, like so many others, ended with his head blown off.
Weirdly, death by cranial explosion wasn’t the most shocking murder in this episode. That title went to Dean Shetty’s demise at the hands of her protege. After realizing Shetty wanted her to push one last time in order to kill the rest of the kids in The Woods, Cate had a mental breakdown. She waited until the group arrived at the Dean’s home, forced her to confess her sins, and then watched as she carried out orders Cate had planted in her head. Making your caretaker slit their own throat is one thing, preventing your friend from saving her life is another, but staging a campus rebellion and unleashing infectious, damaged supes on the greater population is just nuts — even for this show.