In the staggering line-up of several new series and movies to hit the streaming platform, Lost in Space stands out as being a family orientated drama, with genuine heart and enough twists hook you relentlessly till the end.
A fear that plagued many was the target audience unlike most of Netflix’s show’s, fret not, as once settled into the story a surprising amount of mature themes and complex questions are present to stimulate adult audiences alike. And perhaps another worry was whether the budget could properly draw onto the expanse of the sci-fi world being proposed, however again, this proved to be false as the amount of shots and set pieces that one can marvel at, to netlix’s expense, is far beyond that of many movies today.
The pilot was rare in that unlike most shows that rely on you to drag through a couple episodes, I found that I was already enthralled in the mystery. With each episode my interest accumulated rather consistently, binge watching the show does blur the intricacies home to each episode, although certain decisions in the episodes running up to the finale proved infuriating though likely intentional.
‘Dr. Smith’ portrayed by Parker Posey was a standout villain that blurred the line between conventional and unconventional. The character ‘Don,’ provided much needed comic relief, Ignacio Serricchio did not fail and neither to create an interest in his character. As for the Robinson’s themselves, as a whole it did take time to fully fall in love with them, the children were great and did not make as bad decisions as kids often do in the genre, with Taylor Russell portraying ‘Judy’ exceptionally. Molly Parker as ‘Maureen’ was fantastic and her love for science transcended beyond superficiality and gave way for further thinking into every problem she found herself in. ‘John’ played by Toby Stephens had the longest journey to being fully realized, initially groomed as the basic joe, strong father, though his development did take the character to a deepened state by the end.
The true soul of the series, did indeed lie within the connection formed between ‘Will’ played by Maxwell Jenkins, and the iconic one-lined Robot. Jenkins’ performance was integral to the show and he came through, the explanation of the robot forming to a more humanoid stature was a nice touch, as was his childish behavior contrasting with the lights in his head indicating unparalleled thoughts.
The entire tone of the overall project was family-friendly sci-fi entertainment, I myself, found shocking to have loved so much. The ending twist leaves room to spare for creative space fueled adventure, and if played right, ‘Lost in Space’ could see itself as the next big thing.
Not everything was perfect, a blatant repeated criticism would be the over-the-top convenient disaster that followed the family albeit to extreme lengths, if felt gimmicky and was a lazy way to push the plot forward. However this is the center of most movies in the genre, and here, took me out of immersion more than often.
‘Lost in Space’ is an excellent show where fans of the genre will more than appreciate it, and viewers elsewhere too will find heart in this series. With compact episodes, nothing really felt like filler and by the end you will indeed be left craving more, the family dynamic being dysfunctional aided the series’ rendition in the modern world and the characterization, though stale at times, worked more than not in immersion into the hearty space adventure. Production design far beyond what is expected of television, actors exceptional, dialogue and sound design fantastic, the series has real potential in a rather dry market.