Certainly imaginative, but aren’t androids supposed to be like Data on Star Trek: Picard? As envisioned in Raised By Wolves on HBO Max, Mother is one creepy android. A fight between the atheists and the Mithraic worshipers, believers in Sol, destroys the Earth in 2145. The latter, “winners” of the war, have the ability to build great arks to transport 1000 people to a far-away world traveling in hibernation. The former only have faster vessels and androids which do not need life-support systems. For their “kind” to survive, they send embryos which arrive years before the Mithraists.
Except for the large holes, at first, the planet Kepler 22b appears to be a safe place to raise children. But, if you know anything about Ridley Scott (Alien), looks can be deceiving. Director of the first two episodes, he creates a wonderfully complex world that the first three episodes just begin to explore. Of course, this starkly beautiful landscape suggests that the battle between the believers and the pre-programmed atheist androids is about to continue. Two more episodes drop tomorrow as this is not a series you can immediately binge. Although well acted with great production values, this science fiction show is a little too far out for me. I give Raised By Wolves 3.5 Gavels. It receives a 69% Rotten Tomatoes rating with an excellent 90% Audience score.
Given twelve embryos, six initially survive birth. After four years, only Campion survives. An ordinary, generic android, Father believes it best for Campion to join the Mithraic humans, to be with his own kind. Mother, accused of being a necromancer android (built to cause mass extinction), will do anything to keep Campion from the the believers of Sol. Circumstances allow Mother to “abduct” five Mithraic children, one of them the “son” of Caleb and Mary. Their paths are about to violently intersect.
Unfamiliar with the work of Amanda Collins, spine-chilling is an apt description for her part as Mother. One could almost put her in the horror category. If you yearn to see Ragnar of Vikings again, Travis Fimmel is Caleb, just beginning to explore his role in Episodes 2 and 3. Winta McGrath, as young Campion, struggles under the strict atheistic teachings of Mother.
When I think of Raised By Wolves, my Latin teachings take me to Rome and Romulus and Remus. Remember the twins raised by a she-wolf. Here, mother seems sinister, although she, too, is building a new society. To give you a flavor of the show, Mother tells Campion that ” belief in the unknown comforts the human mind, but can also weaken it.”
Polygon notes “Raised by Wolves is intriguing because it feels so far away from the usual run of science-fiction TV. It’s uncanny, but at least it isn’t predictable.” The New York Times complains “if your appetite for portentous sci-fi action is robust, Raised by Wolves may go down easily enough. Though mine is considerable, I still found my attention wandering by the second or third episode.”
As I say, from here on, you are on your own.