The Umbrella Academy has been made more widely known by the Netflix series, allowing TV viewers to learn more about the incredibly dysfunctional family. However, as is typical with adaptations, not all character details have been carried over, and Diego’s sad original relationship appears to have been forgotten. The superhero team Sir Reginald Hargreeves assembled by adopting seven youngsters with superpowers from around the world is followed in the comic by its six surviving members. Due to the neglect of their adopted father, all but two of them—Luther and “Number Five”—share complicated relationships as adults.
Although Luther and Allison Hargreeves have a tentative romance in both the comics and the television series, they are not the only “siblings” with such potential. In the original comics, it is implied that Diego has sentiments for Vanya Hargreeves that are comparable to his own. These feelings, which have not yet been reciprocated, are a recurring theme in the comics. It should be noted that, unlike Viktor Hargreeves, who has come out as trans on the show along with actor Elliot Page who plays him, the character in the comics has not. As a result, discussions about the character in the comics will refer to her as “Vanya” and use female pronouns.
Diego’s affection for Vanya is subtly hinted at throughout the three most recent volumes of The Umbrella Academy by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá. It is revealed that the thing Luther and Diego have in common most is love — Luther’s for Allison and Diego’s for Vanya — during a scene in which they must concentrate on a shared experience in order to cross dimensions. This is unexpected given Diego’s rage toward Vanya in the first volume of the story, but the revelation reframes this rage as the result of feeling betrayed. In fact, it is revealed in the short novella “Anywhere But Here” that Diego and Vanya were bandmates in their youth and that he offered to leave the family with her, but Hargreeves’ schemes ultimately cause the two to fall out.
Relationship Between Diego and Vanya Redefined
Diego’s love for Vanya recontextualizes all of their past interactions, as well as his loathing of Sir Reginald and propensity to hold his feelings back, which is typical of the deep, intricately constructed story conveyed by the comics. Vanya may or may not reciprocate his affections, but if so, that would once again change both her decision to leave the family and her subsequent choice to publish a tell-all expose. These characteristics of the characters remain in the TV adaption, although there has been no indication that their connection does, as both characters now have other romantic interests. Although the content of the comics up to this point hasn’t given much cause for concern, some comic fans have expressed concern that since the comics are still ongoing, the show omitting this narrative line may mean that future comics forget to explore it in the interest of synergy.
Ignored Romance in Umbrella Academy Is Important
Although Luther and Allison had had a terrible “sibling” romance in the TV version, and Diego and Viktor’s new romantic partners have been crucial to several TV plot lines, the comics fascinatingly weave this tragic romance into the lives of numerous characters. Although not everything can or ought to be the same across various mediums, maybe The Umbrella Academy comics will stick to the plot they’ve established and resolve the conflict between Diego and Vanya’s love and rage in a satisfying way.