Season 1 of The Umbrella Academy ends on a shocking note as the White Violin/Vanya Hargreeves (Ellen Page) jump-starts the apocalypse by ripping out a chunk of the moon and sending it hurtling at Earth. The resulting carnage ends up vaporizing the time-traveling assassin Cha-Cha (Mary J. Blige), along with Earth’s population, even as other members of the cast jump back to different points in the time stream.
Of course, whether or not Cha-Cha stays dead remains to be seen. Comic book and television characters have a tendency to get resurrected on a regular basis, and it’s very possible that Blige may return to reprise her character in some form. Moreover, Cha-Cha’s television death differs greatly from her death in the comics, making her future even more ambiguous. Let’s take a look back at Cha-Cha’s life (and death) to see if we can spot any clues about the nature of her demise and possible return.
In the comics and in the Netflix TV series, Cha-Cha (along with her partner Hazel) are a couple of violent and psychotic assassins working for the Temps Aeternalis, a time-traveling organization designed to assassinate people who attempt to alter the timeline. Considered the most dangerous members of their group, the two are tasked with stopping Number 5 from preventing the apocalypse by altering Earth’s timeline.
In the comics, Cha-Cha is a male assassin who wears a blue and yellow bear mask, while his partner Hazel (also a man) wears a pink dog mask. While the two are incredibly strong and durable, they both meet their end in The Umbrella Academy Volume 2: Dallas. During the storyline, the two kidnap and torture the Séance, a member of The Umbrella Academy. However, the Séance possesses Cha-Cha’s body and uses him to kill Hazel. Séance then forces Cha-Cha to turn the gun on himself and kill the assassin.
By contrast, in the Netflix series, Hazel and Cha-Cha switch their masks, with Cha-Cha wearing the pink mask and Hazel wearing the blue mask. More significantly, Cha-Cha’s gender is switched to a woman, with singer/songwriter Mary J. Blige playing the part. The TV versions of Hazel. Blige’s performance was well-received, with some critics feeling her character was one of the best parts of the first season of The Umbrella Academy. Blige retains Cha-Cha’s psychotic attitude as well as her superhuman strength, stamina, and durability and is the more bloodthirsty member of her team, as her partner Hazel yearns for a simpler life and falls in love with a waitress.
Where Hazel manages to escape into the time stream with his girlfriend before the Apocalypse, Cha-Cha’s fate is much grimmer in the Netflix series. While Cha-Cha tries to make a phone call, the White Violin sends a chunk of the moon flying toward the Earth and unleashes an apocalypse of flames and destruction that seemingly overtakes Cha-Cha. However, whether or not this final scene truly killed Cha-Cha is unknown.
After all, given that The Umbrella Academy traveled back in time at the end of Season 1 to prevent the apocalypse from ever happening, it’s very possible that Cha-Cha’s death scene could be undone. Moreover, since Cha-Cha is a time traveler herself, it’s always possible that she could have escaped to a different era, unknown to the viewer. Even if Cha-Cha didn’t survive the apocalypse, it’s also possible that a different version of her (from a different point in her personal timeline) could encounter the characters at some point in the series (allowing Blige to reprise the character).
At this point, Cha-Cha’s fate remains something that viewers of The Umbrella Academy can only speculate on through fan theories. Characters certainly do come back to life regularly in comic books – and the world set up by the Netflix series offers many avenues for a resurrection. For now, however, fans can only hope their favorite psychotic time-traveling assassin will somehow cheat the Grim Reaper when the show begins its second season.
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