Episodes: Ongoing (hour)
TV show dates: June 27, 2015 — present
Series status: Has not been cancelled
Performers include: Colin Morgan, Gemma Chan, Katherine Parkinson, Tom Goodman-Hill, William Hurt, Will Tudor, Rebecca Front, Neil Maskell, Danny Webb, Ivanno Jeremiah, Emily Berrington, Sope Dirisu, Lucy Carless, Theo Stevenson, Pixie Davis, and Ruth Bradley.
TV show description:
Set in suburban London, this science-fiction drama is set in a parallel present, where the latest must-have gadget for any busy family is a Synthetic (or Synth for short) –- a highly-developed robotic servant, eerily similar to its live counterpart. We see the world through multiple concurrent storylines.
In the hope of transforming the way his family lives, father Joe Hawkins (Tom Goodman-Hill) purchases a Synth named Anita (Gemma Chan) against the wishes of his wife; successful lawyer Laura Hawkins (Katharine Parkinson). Their children are rebellious Mattie (Lucy Carless); Toby (Theo Stevenson), a teen who’s on the brink of manhood; and innocent young Sophie (Pixie Davies). Most of the time, Anita is the pliant, servile automaton that all Synths are supposed to be — but every so often she does something inexplicable.
Dr. George Millican (William Hurt) was once a brilliant scientist — a mechanical engineer on the original Synth project. Since his wife Mary died, George has retreated from the world, save for his out of date caretaker Synth Odi (Will Tudor). George treats this particular Synth more like a son than a piece of machinery, due to Odi’s recall of George’s happiest memories. Unfortunately, the aging Odi’s body and mind have been failing, not unlike George’s.
Vera (Rebecca Front) is a Vidman VA-262 and has been designed as a live-in caretaker for elderly people. Vera has been assigned to George as a compulsory upgrade. She has a stern, domineering presence in his home, unlike Odi.
Leo (Colin Morgan) is a desperate man with a singular goal — he wants to be reunited with his beloved family. On the run and hunted by mysterious forces, Leo has little to lose and it shows. His tough exterior masks a dry intellect and humor, and a deep soft spot for his Synth companion Max.
Max (Ivanno Jeremiah) is wide-eyed, curious, and above all, loyal — unlike all of his millions of unthinking brothers and sisters in operation around the world. To Leo, he fulfills multiple roles — sidekick, confidant, little brother, protector and conscience. He sees no bad in anyone or anything, approaching everyone and everything with the trusting optimism of a child.
A gifted but deeply unambitious cop, Detective Sergeant Pete Drummond (Neil Maskell) transferred to the Special Technologies Task Force (the small police unit that deals with the tiny amount of Synth-related crime) for a quiet life, saner hours and to spend some time on his marriage. He thought he’d left the sordid world of human crime behind, but instead he found himself on the weird fringes of a changing society — witnessing first-hand the darkest aspects of how Synths are transforming our lives for the worse, in his eyes at least. He’s grown angry, bitter and cynical. It doesn’t help he a Synth at home helping his wife Jill recuperate from a car accident. He’s starting to think Jill likes her “Simon” more than him.
A natural detective, Detective Inspector Karen Voss (Ruth Bradley) is dedicated to the job at the expense of all else — relationships, friends and family. She’s a loner but is upbeat, enjoys the work and is always ready with a sardonic grin and a joke. She and Pete work well together and have grown close (she delights in teasing her grumpy partner), but they differ crucially on the “Synth question.” For her, it’s not about loving or hating them; it’s a simple matter of adapting.
Niska (Emily Berrington) works as a prostitute in a legal Synthetic brothel, just one of millions of registered Synthetic sex workers who do anything you want, don’t need payment, and never even need to leave their room. But Niska exhibits behaviors that mark her out as a little different to her empty-headed co-workers.
Professor Edwin Hobb (Danny Webb) was second only to David Elster (the creator of the Synths) in the field of artificial intelligence. The two worked together closely on the prototypes of the very first Synths – and Hobb was devoted to his brilliant, reclusive mentor. But something went wrong between them and they went their separate ways. Hobb has spent the intervening years building a formidable powerbase, all to prove his path was the right one.
This episode has not aired yet.
First aired: TBD
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