Humans and Mr Robot: The Synthetic Now on TV


I obsess a bit too much about robots, artificial intelligence and robots taking over the world.

I’ve just indulged in a handful of episodes of the show Humans, and it’s creepily promising. Humans coexist with a population of humanoid “synthetics”, who are basically slaves. A small group of these synths has been created and given consciousness – and this is the story unfolding alongside the intricacies of daily life in which humans rely on, feel humiliated by, feel inadequate next to, feel creeped out by, love and humanize their synths.

Mr Robot is not a show about robots except in the broadest sense, but instead is about a loner-hacker-morphine addict named Elliott. It’s suspenseful and often funny (love it in the first episode when Elliott, also the narrator, recounts for the audience all the ways in which his best friend Angela’s douchebag boyfriend is offensive – including the fact that he listens to Maroon 5 and Josh Groban).

Both shows drum up questions on ethics that are becoming more pervasive all the time, which is part of why I am excited about both shows.

Meanwhile, technology has already taken over.

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