I finally got around to watching Ridley Scott’s Raised by Wolves on HBO Max last week and I ended up binge-watching the entire season. It was that good. The show felt like the Ridley Scott of Alien (1979) and Bladerunner (1982) was back in full-force.
Raised by Wolves follows two androids, Father (Amanda Collin) and Mother (Abubakar Salim), responsible for raising human children on an unsettled planet named Kepler-22b. The androids’ programming requires they raise the children as atheists and to establish the first colony on the planet.
There’s a deep, violent backstory to the setting of the show. Earth was essentially destroyed from a major war between the religious Mithraic and the atheists. Since Earth becomes inhospitable, the Mithraic board their space ship Ark while the atheists, somehow less technologically advanced than the Mithraic, have but one small ship.
Mother/Lamia is a reprogrammed “Necromancer” android, originally built by the religious Mithraic followers to kill the atheists. A brilliant atheist leader and hacker captures Lamia and slowly reprogram her to care for the few human embryos. Mother, along with a standard reprogrammed male android named Father.
Mother, Father, and the embryos leave Earth on a small ship and crash land on Kelper 22b. They start a small homestead and bring six of the embryos to life.
Soon after, the drama picks up right along with the pace in the fight between religion and atheism and survival of the human species. There’s so many twists and turns shifting the plot that it makes for an exciting series worth binge-watching.
Episode 1: Raised by Wolves
After Earth is rendered uninhabitable, Androids start a settlement and a new family with human embryos on the planet Kepler-22b.
Episode 2: Pentagram
Mother receives unexpected guests with sinister plans. Are humans and androids the only inhabitants of Kepler-22b?
Episode 3: Virtual Faith
After the Mithraic kids fall sick, Campion believes Mother is poisoning them and plans an escape. As Mother and Father attempt to prove otherwise, Marcus and Sue work to convince the other surviving Mithraic to mount a rescue of the children, desperate to get their son Paul back.
Episode 4: Nature’s Course
Father tries to teach the children how to hunt some of Kepler-22b’s mysterious creatures for food. Meanwhile, the Mithraic make a stunning discovery that potentially fulfills a Mithraic prophecy, and a debate about how to proceed ignites a conflict between Marcus and the Mithraic leader, Ambrose.
Episode 5: Infected Memory
Marcus moves forward with a plan to rescue the Mithraic children, but first he has to find them. Back at the settlement, Campion and Paul bond while on a hunting expedition with Father, and Mother attempts to learn more about her origins.
Episode 6: Lost Paradise
After rekindling her connection to her creator, Mother finds herself distracted by intense feelings she didn’t know she was capable of having, unaware that Marcus, Sue and the Mithraic are closing in on the settlement.
Episode 7: Faces
Marcus’ decisions stress his relationship to his family as he struggles to maintain his clout as leader of the Mithraic. Mother is able to see Marcus for who he truly is, which threatens his power and puts Mother in a precarious situation she might not recover from. Meanwhile, Campion is faced with a choice that could result in dire consequences.
Episode 8: Mass
As Marcus continues to embrace his Mithraic devotion, Sue worries he may no longer have her and Paul’s best interests at heart. Mother experiences what she believes to be malfunctions, and Hunter works on a secret project with Father.
Episode 9: Umbilical
Sue is determined to keep the children safe, and in doing so, struggles with whether or not she can trust Mother. Meanwhile, a new threat arises and an increasingly erratic Marcus causes the Mithraic to question their leader.
Episode 10: The Beginning
Paul displays troubling behavior that leads to a revelation; Sue confides in Mother, while Father battles human-like emotions; as Campion questions his place in his new family, Mother and Father uncover a secret about the native creatures.