🚨 There are SPOILERS ahead for The Umbrella Academy Season 3! 🚨
After waiting what felt like forever, The Umbrella Academy finally returned with Season 3 on Netflix, and it was just as wild, wacky, and wholesome as ever before.
The new season picked up with the Hargreeves kids — Luther (Tom Hopper), Viktor (Elliot Page), Allison (Emmy Raver-Lampman), Diego (David Castañeda), Five (Aidan Gallagher), and Klaus (Robert Sheehan) — arriving back at their home in their own time period only to discover that a lot has changed. Namely, The Umbrella Academy has been replaced with The Sparrow Academy.
Now, our favorite unlikely heroes are trying to piece together what happened after they stopped the apocalypse and how the world they once knew could be so different. It's an emotional and, honestly, chaotic ride from start to finish this season, and it's all I want to talk about.
While the season overall had a lot going on — like, Allison, what were we THINKING?! And also, I would simply die for Diego and Lila (Ritu Arya) — I'm here today to discuss the first few minutes of Season 3, Episode 1, aka the "Footloose" dance-off.
The Umbrella Academy season 3 beginning with a footloose dance battle just really captures the essence of the show
Literally eight minutes into Episode 1 this season, The Umbrella Academy and The Sparrow Academy come face-to-face, with Marcus (Justin Cornwell), aka Sparrow Number One, suggesting that the two families settle their argument "the old-fashioned way."
Then, the iconic Kenny Loggins song "Footloose" from, you know, Footloose, begins with Marcus and Luther starting the dance-off.
From here, it's a nearly four-minute-long dance number with everyone dancing through the house to "Footloose," until we find out that it was all in Diego's head after Jayme (Cazzie David), aka Sparrow Number Six, used her spitting superpower to make him hallucinate. I can't even do the scene justice, so just watch it below:
This isn't the first time The Umbrella Academy has pulled off a flawless dance sequence. In Season 1, the Hargreeves danced to "I Think We're Alone Now," and in Season 2, Klaus, Viktor, and Allison had a little dance party to "Twistin' the Night Away."
Basically, I hope this is how it actually happened behind the scenes:
imagine being the cast of the umbrella academy and it’s the first day of filming season 3 and you’re like “so are we gonna have a huge fight with the sparrow academy” and they’re like “…you guys ever heard of footloose”
So, how did the cast and crew pull off the Season 3 "Footloose" moment? Creator Steve Blackman told TVLine that the dance-off stemmed from thinking about what Diego would hallucinate. "He's a bit of a dancer, that character, so I thought, 'Maybe he would just go crazy,'" Steve said. "'Footloose! He would go to Footloose!' It just felt right to me."
Production on Season 3 began during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, so a lot of the early "Footloose" rehearsals actually occurred over Zoom before the cast jumped into a dance studio.
"We didn't use any dance doubles and we're in the height of COVID and those actors worked through Zoom [during] the first rehearsals. They had their laptops open, they're standing 10 feet away," Steve Blackman told Comicbook.com.
"Then they went into a studio with a mask and shield; and we finally got onto set and it was wonderful because we're all in a bit of a dark place with COVID and then doing that dance. The laughter was there. It was just five amazing days of just joy on set."
Throughout quarantine, the cast had rehearsals "every other day," and then they came together for two weeks of pre-production for Season 3, which consisted of dance and stunt rehearsals every single day.
The dance number was choreographed by John Heginbotham, who the cast called a "patient choreographer" when it came to teaching them the dance routine.
Speaking about the training on set, Elliot Page said, "Everybody's worked really hard and I think it looks awesome. Dance training for 'Footloose' was so fun, and it felt so special learning to do it. Next thing you knew, we're just breaking it down together."
Meanwhile, Robert Sheehan said, "All of us working together and doing it at the same time was just...very bonding. So if you're at home and you're bored with your family members, you should choreograph a dance together. It's very unifying."
Emmy Raver-Lampman, who notably appeared on Broadway in Hamilton and Hair, told TVLine that she was "so proud of everyone" for all of the hard work they put into the dance number, considering a majority of them had no professional dance training.
Emmy continued, saying, "The majority of the actors in this cast have never danced like that, or had to learn a dance like that. Honestly, it was beautiful to watch everyone take this on and hunker down and learn the dance and take all the curveballs that were thrown at them. It was really, really fun and entertaining."