In the days before streaming, science fiction was a neglected market, considered far too costly to be put on screen. Networks did invest in a handful of series, but it wasn't until the demand for original streaming grew that they were willing to put down the money necessary for quality content. Now we have a vast, impressive library of titles to choose from with more being created all the time. 2022 is no different. This year's lineup is mindblowing. It's one of the best we've seen in years. There are some amazing titles on this list, and the year still isn't over.
Raised By Wolves - Season 2
We began our 'Raised By Wolves' journey with a pair of androids, dubbed Mother and Father. They have been tasked with raising a group of human embryos on a planet named Keppler 22-b after a religious war made Earth uninhabitable. The style is stark, gritty, at times absurd, and always intriguing. The show asks big questions dealing with society, religion, and human nature. It goes beyond human conflicts, leading into a cosmic struggle that was just beginning to unfold itself when season one ended. The second season was just as cryptic, though it did provide us with a glimpse of the answers that viewers were craving. Unfortunately, the show was canceled during the massive budget cuts at HBOMax. It's a serious shame, but the show worked hard to earn its place at the top of this list. There are rumors that it will be continued in another format, likely a graphic novel. It's worth a watch regardless. There's nothing else like it.
Every once in a while, a work of science fiction comes along that is so relevant, so well-written and so profound that it glues audiences to their seats and pulls them into a discourse about their daily lives. That is how a dystopian classic comes about, and Severance definitely falls into that category. The show is centered around a group of office workers who have the memories of their work lives surgically separated from those of their personal lives. After that, they're effectively trapped, unable to perceive anything other than their time slaving away for a dubious corporation. It's an existential allegory with a hint of suspense and some of the best cliffhangers we've encountered this year.
The Man Who Fell to Earth
Once upon a time in 1976, David Bowie starred in a low-budget film about an alien who came to Earth to bring water to his home world. The movie, based on a novel with the same name, was stylized and abstract. It had strange outfits and an indecipherable plot. It was supposed to be about the effects of alcoholism and human nature, but it was hopelessly tainted by the bad production quality and constant sex scenes. It was terrible. This new show, which also shares the same name, was meant to be a sequel to the film, detailing the journey of another alien who came to finish the job that Bowie couldn't. With its stunning CGI and first-rate acting, it more than makes up for the sins of the original. It even manages to mix in some of the trippy plot devices used in Bowie's film without sacrificing quality.
SEE Season 3
Apple seems to have a penchant for creating some of the best original series online, starting with SEE. The show, which was one of their first to debut, is set in a world where a virus blinded the human race, forcing them back into the stone age. It follows the lives of two sighted children and their blind families as they make their way across this macabre world and try to build a life for themselves. This isn't a low-budget epic with shoddy acting and a poorly written plot. This is one of the internet's best shows hand-down, and it's partially due to the unrivaled performance put on by Sylvia Hoeks, who plays Queen Sibeth Kane. The absurd monarch represents all of the anti-technological sentiment found in Old Europe before science took hold. The entire show is centered around this theme, giving audiences a view of what it must've been like to exist in a time before reason.
Westworld Season 4
It would be impossible to make a list of science fiction streaming originals without mentioning Westworld, especially now that fans are finally getting their coveted fourth season. The show seemed to usher in a new era of science fiction with amazing CGI, a macabre sense of humor, and a plot that simply would not stop bringing us closer to the edge of our seats. It's been years since the show first premiered, and while it might have had its ups and downs, we still cannot get enough of those sentient robots and all of the mayhem they cause.
Star Trek: Strange New Worlds | Official Trailer | Paramount+
Star Trek: Strange New Worlds
It's hard to imagine the Star Trek franchise reviving itself after the epic slap in the face that was Discovery, and definitely not after the disjointed attempt they're calling Picard. Viewers had had enough of the poorly thought-out plots and sappy music. They were fuming and ready to give up altogether, and who could blame them? So the current powers that be decided to try something different, so to speak. They modeled Strange New Worlds after the old 90s format, using old lines and old characters while making use of modern CGI. The result was something that everyone could get behind.
Best Upcoming Premiere
Handmaid's Tale Season 5
Blessed be the fruit! That's right. At the time of writing this, we are only 3 days away from the season 5 premiere of 'The Handmaid's Tale.' It's like a holiday. Fans of the show are eagerly awaiting to see what happens to their favorite character, June Osborne, who started her journey as a sex slave in the totalitarian theocracy, Gilead. That journey is almost over. It was announced that season 6 would be the final season, but there's more where that came from. Hulu is already producing a new spin-off based on Ann Dowd's character, Aunt Lydia. Season 5 is reported to be one of the series most exciting yet. Much of the show was based in Gilead, and now we're finally getting a glimpse of what it's like for Canadian refugees.