Netflix's 'Lost in Space' Is a Dazzling Sci-Fi Adventure
While the 1960s television series Lost in Space aired before your time, you’ve probably seen it in reruns or you have heard someone use the show’s catchphrase: “Danger, Will Robinson. Danger!” The clunky yet so-groovy show followed the misadventures of the space age Robinsons family who struggled to survive in a strange and scary universe after their spaceship was sabotaged and thrown off course. There was a film version as well, which came out in the 90s and starred William Hurt, Mimi Rogers and Gary Oldman.
If you think that we’ve had all the Lost in Space we need… guess what? Everything old is new again! Netflix is helming a reboot and they’ve allowed us to preview the first five episodes of Season One—it’s a lot of fun, and it’s one of the few shows out there that can be enjoyed by the whole family.
Here’s what you can expect:
In the upgraded 2046 scenario, the Robinson family and the colony spaceship Jupiter 2 encounter a rip in spacetime. They dash into a small pod, but rather than being a refuge it’s a trap—they crash-land onto an unknown planet. Stranded light years from their intended destination, the family are forced to adapt to an alien environment as they plot and plan to somehow get back to the time and place where they belong. But it’s not going to be easy; though they can breathe the air, there are still a myriad of environmental dangers ranging in extremes from icy sinkholes to vast, inhospitable deserts. Not to mention other beings.
Stranded along with the Robinsons are two outsiders who have found themselves thrown together by circumstance. Both harbor secrets and each has a penchant for telling lies. The charismatic Dr. Smith (Parker Posey) is a master manipulator with an inscrutable endgame. And the wayward Don West (Ignacio Serricchio) is a highly-skilled contractor… they need each other—and The Robinsons—more than they care to admit. Oh, and yes: Robot is there too! (He’s more high-tech now… and not as cute.)
The Robinsons are a much more grounded, believable family than they were in the old series. John (Toby Stephens) and Maureen (Molly Parker) are not the perfect cookie-cutter sixties-style mom and dad; they make mistakes and they hide some surprises, but above all they really love their children. Will (Max Jenkins) is an adventurous and pragmatic youngster, while his bickering but bright sisters Judy (Taylor Russell) and Penny (Minda Sundwall) offer up lots of opportunity for adventure.
The series is very well-made; it has stellar special effects, plenty of action, and an edge to it I wasn’t expecting (it’s probably not a show for little kids to watch alone, but it is solid family entertainment). The first episode weaves a lot of backstory into the narrative, which is a great way to get to know the characters quickly without having to wait several episodes to see if you’re going to like them or not. If you enjoy the first episode, you’ll definitely like the whole series.
Look for it on Netflix on April 13, 2018.