HBO Max’s Raised by Wolves is something that all sci-fi fans should rejoice. This is probably the single most ambitious and engrossing sci-fi TV series ever made to date. A brainchild of Ridley Scott and Aaron Guzikowski, the series is based on original material created for the show and not based on any existing novels. Ridley Scott served not only as one of the Executive Producers but also directed the first two episodes! In fact, his son, Luke Scott directed three of the 8 episodes in the season. Ridley Scott’s trade mark vision of distant planets and the future is very much present with the landscape of the alien planets, and model of how Artificial Intelligent robots of the future would look like and behave. The greyish colour tone of the landscape, the helmet and space uniform used, unnatural child birthsequence, and the milky coloured “blood” oozing from injured androids. Think of his Aliens franchise and Blade Runner as forerunners to this world. The structure of a TV series here allows Ridley to present his world in much more detail than any of his movies could and we are all the better for it.
The story centres around two androids affectionately named simply “Mother” and “Father”, assigned by their creator to raise human children in a uninhabited planet. It’s set in a distant future where earth becomes no longer inhabitable and a new planet needs to be set upon for humanity to survive. The story is made interesting at multiple levels from the superb performances of its cast, to the creative details of a future where androids are widely used, the exploration of a new and sometimes hostile planet, and an exciting tale of cat and mouse between the human race which has been divided to atheists and “believers”. There is strong biblical undertones in the subtext but this does not get preachy in any way so no worries there. The special effects which plays an important role in any complex sci-fi, is also in excellent form here.
All in all, I liked Raised by the Wolves very much. It entertains and promotes thinking without giving away too much of the plot in too many ways. I liked how the androids were made to struggle with internal conflicts as they evolve to become more and more human. The only grudge is that the final episode doesn’t quite provide the closure for its complex story and instead ended up adding more questions to the mix. Its open ended cliff hanger ending and unanswered questions leaving more than enough reasons for a follow-up season.