Raised by Wolves (HBO)

COVID binge watch # 6.

Following a war between atheists and other people, the planet Earth has become uninhabitable. In order to give humanity a second chance, an atheist scientist (you’d think they all were, but this isn’t the case) launches a probe to Keppler 4b. The probe contains two androids and boxes packed with frozen embryos.

The planet proves unsurprisingly hostile, and after twelve years, the androids (called Mother and Father) have lost all the children except one.

And to make matters worse, a ship from the religious sect arrives …

You can tell Ridley Scott was involved: Raised by Wolves is what you get if someone decided to do a spin-off series for the androids from the Alien franchise. It’s dark, dystopian, and a bit … gooey. Like Alien, there are a lot of skeletal monsters … and mucus. My god, there’s a lot of mucus …

Don’t let that put you off though. Raised by Wolves is an extraordinary and compelling watch. The acting, especially from Amanda Collin and Abubakar Salim playing Mother and Father, both turning in very human and often amusing performances. (Father has a memory core full of really bad knock knock jokes). The script is great: tightly written with the right amount of sentiment, and the storyline doesn’t take much effort to follow, even while exploring elements such as the sentience of machines, the futility of war, and the insanity of religious fundamentalism.

But at its heart, this series is about the fractious relationship between Mother (an advanced high-tech engine of mass destruction) and Father (a rather basic service android). The problem mainly seems to stem from Father’s feelings of inadequacy, though I wonder if the caste system making it all the way to the end of human civilization also has something to do with it.

It’s only ten episodes, so you can probably whizz through them over a couple of nights, and it’s a pretty gory in places, so don’t say I didn’t warn you. I enjoyed the whole season, but I think I was a little disappointed with the last episode. It seemed a little but disjointed to me. Still, that’s a small thing; certainly not enough to stop me looking forward to the next season.

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