ml lang="en-US"> My Current Viewing: Akta Manniskor (Real Humans) | vermicious

My Current Viewing: Akta Manniskor (Real Humans)

This Swedish show doesn’t seem to have any official English language distribution, so I’ll just leave its access to your imagination. At a time when foreign language shows have been getting the attention they deserve, I hope at some point, Real Humans does.

The premise is that the world has robot servents that are designed to be as close to human as possible. They’re called HuBots, and they are subservient, with a plastic look to them. There is a researcher who has figured out code that will allow them freedom, though, and his personal cluster of HuBots are now out in the world, trying to find their way.

But there is plenty of prejudice against the HuBots, and the series makes it quite plain that the human inclination to treat them as objects rather than actual beings is a regular action of ours, whether based in race or species. Humans, it seems, have a terrible time conceiving of themselves as being a part of something, rather than lording over everything.

Though there is some action, the series is, at heart, a drama about people, often about their relationships with their HuBots as much as each other. I’ve found it clever, surprising, touching, and as I get to the end of its second season, I have no clue if there will anymore, but I hope sos.

The show features some great little performances that draw you into the characters, particularly among the HuBots themselves — Marie Robinson as Bea, Alexander Stocks as Odi, and Johannes Bah Kuhnke as Rick — as well as the very affecting Kåre Hedebrant as Tobias and Sten Elfström as his grandfather Lennart, both part of the human family that is a major focus of the show. Also, Leif Andrée as Roger makes an awesome, everyman schlub.

John Seven

is a writer and journalist living in North Adams, MA, with his work appearing in a number of publications. His books for children include A Rule Is To Break: A Child’s Guide To Anarchy and Happy Punks 1-2-3, done in collaboration with his wife, illustrator Jana Christy, and the Time Tripping Faradays series. John and Jana’s upcoming picture book bio about Frank Sinatra, Frankie Liked To Sing, is being published by Abrams Books in the fall. In the 1990s, John and Jana self-published the comic book Very Vicky.

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