Why I Fought to Save 'Raised By Wolves'

Why I Fought to Save 'Raised By Wolves'

Paul Hunter
September 16 2022 - 03:29am

Every once in a while, a piece of art comes along that is so expertly crafted, so beautiful, and so profound it touches everyone who sees it. There's the Mona Lisa, the Statue of David, the Sistine Chapel, and then there's 'Raised by Wolves,' the science fiction masterpiece created by Aaron Guzikowski. As soon as I saw it, I was obsessed. 

It took up every free second, from the moment I woke up to the moment I went to bed. I was incapable of thinking about anything else. I watched the show on a loop, examining all of the intricate details, the plot points, the character's expressions, cave paintings, and strange alphabets, gleaning new pieces of information as I did. There were so many layers that it would've been impossible for me to fully understand what I was watching, but I did it anyway.

To many people, this might sound strange. But I wasn't the only one who couldn't stop. There were thousands of fans trying to decode 'Ancient Mithraic,' arguing over canon and fan theories. They'd swarm social media, speculating about what would come next. We had found something special, and we shared a bond over it, creating more than just a fandom. Superhero movies and romcoms have fandoms. We were acolytes.

Scroll Down to Continue

We Never Expected What Would Happen Next

When season 2 premiered, there was a sense of celebration and an epic sigh of relief. We had been watching the same scenes again and again, and in many ways, it was satisfying. But the first season ended in a wicked cliffhanger. We couldn't just sit around waiting. We were desperate, and the show had been incredibly stingy when it came to shelling out answers. We were on a quest for knowledge. 

At the end of season 2, it was revealed that the show was an allegory for the Garden of Eden and that the familiar characters we had come to love were actually Lilith, Eve, and Adam. Nothing could possibly be more interesting than that. We had to see what came next. 

We waited and waited, certain that the announcement for season 3 would come, until Abu Salim, who played the android Father in the series, posted a call to action on Reddit

Abu said that they had been trying to negotiate with HBOMax for a third season, but they couldn't reach a deal. The network was canceling 'Raised by Wolves,' and he needed our help to find the series another home. 

It didn't seem possible that things could end that way. For almost a year, 'Raised by Wolves' was HBO's flagship series, ushering in the new streaming platform. The logo was constantly accompanied by scenes from the show. How could they possibly cancel it?

Mother covered in fuel-blood. Courtesy of HBOMax

The Fight Began

I was one of the first to help organize the fan campaign. I immediately approached the subreddit moderators, and with the help of one other person, created campaign headquarters on Discord. Abu followed shortly after, revealing himself to me in chat. To this day, I feel honored that I was the first person to speak with him. 

He was light-hearted and easygoing, almost approachable. He became the spiritual leader of the movement, popping up to encourage us and surprise visitors. It was amazing to see as the rest of the cast followed suit, either posting about our movement directly or expressing their sorrow, using our hashtag #RenewRaisedByWolves. 

We dubbed our campaign Save Raised By Wolves, and we took the internet by storm. Soon influential members of the community, like Hasan Abi, and Forbes columnist Erik Kain were talking about us. It was flattering, and there was a real sense of optimism. 

We reached out directly to streaming platforms, covering their posts with our hashtag, calling them, and filling out contact forms. We messaged members of the press, cataloging anyone that might be willing to cover the movement, while we promoted ourselves to the public in general. 

In the process, I made inroads with the journalist community. We interacted. They posted stories, and it gave me a renewed sense of purpose. Graphic designers and video editors came out of the woodwork, creating memes and works of art that we could spread on social media. Wherever we went, we found people who were willing to throw all of their time and energy behind the cause.

It seemed like the entire world was within reach. We just had to grab a megaphone and shout our message to the masses, and for a time, that was true. 

It wasn't because of who we were or anything to do with the movement itself. It was the show. We had discovered a once-in-a-lifetime masterpiece. We knew Aaron Guzikowski had poured years into creating it, and we weren't about to let HBO squash his dreams.

Scroll Down to Continue

What Made 'Raised By Wolves' So Special?

At first glance, 'Raised By Wolves' was about a conflict between two religious factions, the Atheists and the Mithraic, who seemed to be a group of Christian crusaders. The story began with two androids Mother (Amanda Collin) and Father (Abu Salim) landing on an interstellar planet called Keppler 22-b. 

The Earth had been made uninhabitable during the war, and the androids were tasked with raising a batch of embryos on their own. They formed their own family and built a small settlement where they survived off the land. One by one, their children died of a mysterious sickness until there was only Campion (Winta Mcgrath).

Infant Campion, Courtesy of HBOMax

When Campion was born, he was small and frail, and he looked as though he might die. Mother cradled him and started to sing a strange lullaby, bringing her infant son back from the brink of death. 

It was a beautiful moment, establishing her maternal instinct, which initially kept fans glued to the screen. Soon the Mithraic Ark arrived, carrying what was believed to be the last of the human race in stasis pods. They came to the settlement and tried to take Campion away. 

Mother transformed; her skin took on a metallic effect, and she flew into the air. The audience realized that she was more than an android. She was a necromancer, a weapon of mass destruction. Their design was inspired by blueprints that had been encoded in the Mithraic Bible, said to have been given to them by their deity, Sol.

Mother's Necromancer scream. Courtesy of HBOMax

As the plot unfolded, we became aware of outside forces, a planetary signal believed to be Sol embodied, humanoid androids from a time before men walked upright, and neanderthals that could live for hundreds of thousands of years. The show speculated that perhaps Keppler was the original home of humanity, but we were never told the answer to that question. 

Fans scoured ancient myths, obsessing over Viking legends, Hindu gods, and Greek deities--certain that they could find clues to what was going on. They were right. 

Intrigue turned into addiction, driven by the cosmic scale of the plot, the mystery, and the profound, daring themes. Nothing like 'Raised By Wolves' had ever been created before. It was surreal, dark, and enticing. It asked us to challenge our core understanding of what it meant to be human and what constituted life.

It seemed like the writers had no limit. They were heretical and absurd, and they pulled it all off flawlessly without ever giving us the answers we were so desperate for. To this day, we still have no idea what was going on, just that we needed to see it onscreen.

Scroll Down to Continue

Mother and Father, Courtesy of HBOMax

Efforts to Support the Show Have Given the Franchise Hope

Not long after the movement began, Abu Salim made another post on Reddit, which seemed to stop the movement in its tracks. For a moment, many believed that it was over, but we forgot to read the fine print:

'Your voices have been heard. Not only by networks but by

Scott Free themselves. It's inspired the creatives to look for new ways of

potentially telling and finishing this story. We will get answers... Just not

in the same way we hoped.'

Let me repeat that last part: 'We will get answers... Just not in the same way we hoped.'

Our movement inspired the powers that be to continue the franchise. In essence, we did save 'Raised by Wolves,' and according to the man we lovingly dubbed Father, we will get answers. That's why we continue to post, spread the word, and let the industry know we're not going anywhere. We know that if we do, we can continue to inspire Hollywood and that one day we will be reunited with the characters we loved.

Scroll Down for Comments and Reactions
Send Comment