“All we can do is what feels right”
There’s been something really quite moving about the second series of Humans, the Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley Channel 4 drama which has just wound to a close. In a world that started off examining the diametrically opposed differences between humans and synths (series 1 review), the stark black and white palette of the show has moved markedly to a murky shade of grey on both sides, complicating the actions of both parties to make us really appreciate the difficulties in deciding right and wrong.
So where the renegade synth Niska (a brilliant Emily Berrington) has decided to subject herself to human justice in order to try and find some common ground, newly awakened Hester goes fully rogue in defining humans as the absolute enemy, to brutal effect in a chilling performance from Sonya Cassidy. And questions of identity are no less complex on the human side, as the show toys with ideas of humans opting to live life as a synth and experimenting even further with technology.
This latter aspect was perhaps a little underdeveloped, isolated a little too much from the main story for too long but in its own right, was still truly disturbing and upsetting. Marshall Allman’s Elon Musk-like figure pushing Carrie-Anne Moss’ Dr Athena Morrow to ever more innovative lengths in her work in transferring human consciousness into the digital realm made almost unbearably sad by the discovery of her true motivation and the subtly devastating way in which it came to an end.
And with the trusty band of original synths fractured, differently scarred by their attempts of establishing romantic relationships (including Niska’s same-sex Berlin love affair and Mia’s smoking hot Ed (Sam Palladio)), the build-up to the horrifically abortive rescue attempt and then subsequent uprising sets the scene, hopefully, for a fascinating direction for a third series to explore how the human race would cope when it can bury its head in the sand no longer. I really hope it gets the chance.