Another Life: Across the Universe
July 25, 2019 7:33 PM - Season 1, Episode 1 - Subscribe

I had to give this a shot, but, pretty much agree with the negative reviews. I'll probably keep watching just to see how it ends, but I'm not going to be posting individual episode threads for it. Maybe a full-season thread once I get to the finale, but I don't plan on speed-binging my way through, so, if anyone else feels like posting, have at it.
posted by oh yeah! at 7:44 PM on July 25, 2019

I tried to watch this but I found the crew to be completely awful right out of the gate and noped out halfway through the first episode.
posted by selenized at 8:26 PM on July 25, 2019

If Netflix or Amazon had anything else on that I was interested in seeing, I'd be done with this after the first two episodes. But they don't, so apparently I'm screaming goddamnit people stop talking and do your fucking jobs, have any of you ever even been in a spaceship before? for another eight hours.
posted by Spathe Cadet at 9:52 PM on July 25, 2019 [2 favorites]

Oddly these comments make me want to watch the show more, not less.
posted by Literaryhero at 12:03 AM on July 26, 2019 [5 favorites]

Hey, low expectations can often make for an entertaining experience. Judging by only this first episode, the show is just kind of mid-level bad, not that kind of train-wreck 'how did this get made? what am I watching' level of spectacularly-bad that loops back on itself to be 'good'. Just decent production value visual effects and lots of pretty people being shitty to each other because DRAMA.
posted by oh yeah! at 5:48 AM on July 26, 2019

I will usually watch any show in space. After one episode, I'm out. Sackhoff is the only actor who was capable of doing anything with the awful writing. The CGI is great, though.
posted by General Malaise at 7:46 AM on July 26, 2019 [1 favorite]

This was bad. For some reason every single relationship between all these strangers to us is strained to the point of snapping in advance. For whatever reason we are supposed to worry that the thing that's been sitting there for month(s?) is going to suddenly destroy the earth. If we do accept that as a worry, we've assembled a crew made up of a manic rage-monster and a bunch of slackers they found hanging out in a coffee shop for this crucial mission. If that's the best we can send the shiny antenna really ought to go ahead and destroy everything.
posted by Babblesort at 8:29 AM on July 26, 2019 [2 favorites]

The writing also includes a painful amount of "as you know Bob" clunky exposition.
posted by Babblesort at 8:34 AM on July 26, 2019

Yeah, I found it unwatchable, even with a bunch of fast-forwarding.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 9:32 AM on July 26, 2019

Middling Sci-Fi Show That Films in Vancouver has rebooted once again.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:22 PM on July 26, 2019 [7 favorites]

I like this show I don't care what anybody says.
posted by yonega at 3:31 AM on July 27, 2019 [3 favorites]

I came in with low expectations and it suuuuucks. Like Starbuck has been asleep for a month or whatever, and wakes up crying about how much she misses her daughter, but she has only been away for like a day in her perception. Wouldn't the daughter and husband (is he going for It's Always Sunny cosplay?) be the ones who actually felt bad? They actually felt the month apart.

And like who designed the space ship? There is all this turbulence and no seats? Ugh. And like they have FTL travel but apparently need to slingshot around a star (how close were they anyway, and do they understand how orbiting works?) because of a cloud being in the way?

Oh and wouldn't the radio transmissions be coming from the cloud anyway? Like if the star they were looking for changed position, why would that affect the signal direction? Woo boy.
posted by Literaryhero at 5:20 AM on July 27, 2019 [3 favorites]

Ok one more little thing that bothered me. The husband asks the daughter to go get him milk for his coffee when they are IN A RESTAURANT. Come on, everyone knows you don't go back there.
posted by Literaryhero at 7:56 AM on July 27, 2019

I came in with low expectations and it suuuuucks.

We tried to warn you.
posted by Spathe Cadet at 8:16 AM on July 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

These are probably the dumbest astronauts I've ever seen on TV, and the ship's interior is head-poundingly badly designed. Maybe The Expanse has raised the bar for me in terms of how ships made for interplanetary travel would look, but apart from the complete lack of chairs, you wouldn't have a bunch of mugs just lying around in the kitchen and stuff. Plus, yeah, this is the most important mission in human history, and this the crew you've selected?
posted by whir at 9:59 AM on July 27, 2019 [4 favorites]

"Middling Sci-Fi Show That Films in Vancouver"

If only it were that good.

It's shooting fish in a barrel, but if you start complaining about the science, you'll never stop. My standard (which I've argued for here often in the past) is that a show establishes some level of realism and it should stick to it. This is the kind of show that uses gravitational lensing from a huge local concentration of dark matter to explain the error calculating a star's position but then in numerous respects reveals that it utterly misunderstands what dark matter is. This is a show that has a ship with a habitation ring that isn't shown spinning and thus apparently they either have artificial gravity, making the ring superfluous and unnecessarily complicated, or they're constantly under 1g of acceleration in the same orientation, making the design completely unworkable, not to mention that they change their acceleration numerous times in the episode. They are somehow well within the corona of hot, young blue star. A slingshot exchange of momentum is unnecessary if they have artificial gravity or if they have the energy to undergo 1g of acceleration indefinitely but, regardless, for interstellar distances this still means travel times measures in decades and the closer to c, the more time-dilation will complicate matters. But they have FTL! Apparently, at FTL they can "run into" things, which means they're FTL in the normal universe definitely not possible and if you're going that way then just pretend Einsteinian physics don't exist, but, either way, you have the doppler effect of all the EM near, at, and beyond c which...okay, sorry. Culturally, they are advanced enough to have FTL and numerous interstellar ships, and Washington DC is under water, so this is in the late 21st or 22nd, but it sure looks just like 2019. The CGI department thought that a scene with a holographic representation of the Earth should have the cloud layer visibly parallax because it's "high" even though in real life we regularly see views of the Earth from that distance and it just all looks flat. It makes sense to fly an interstellar ship from a cockpit by one person and this will work better than their obviously super-advanced computing capabilities. They repair damage to pipes with wrenches.

This sounds like nitpicking but it's symptomatic of the overall problem: the show is incoherent in every respect. Nothing really fits together, very little seems well thought out.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 12:49 PM on July 27, 2019 [9 favorites]

(not gonna lie though, I watched 3 episodes last night and plan on watching more today)
posted by Literaryhero at 2:28 PM on July 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

They repair damage to pipes with wrenches.

It was either brewing or distilling equipment that they were fixing in the scene right before aggro-dude got zapped. I thought if their first priority was to repair the alcohol generators, it explained a lot about the behavior of the crew.
posted by peeedro at 5:18 PM on July 27, 2019 [4 favorites]

This show is bad. I kind of wonder if they were intentionally trying for camp but didn't quite get it right.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 7:29 PM on July 27, 2019

OK, not just me, then. I feel like I have to watch just about any random scene of Tyler Hoechlin as Superman on Supergirl to get the taste of CaptainFormer-Captain-First-Officer-or-who-the-fuck-cares-what-they-call-him Stubbly Angryman out of my mouth. I wasn't crazy about this plot device when it was used on Star Trek: The Motion Picture some forty (!) years ago, but the way that it played out between Kirk and Decker was a masterpiece of subtlety compared to this mess. I'd like to smack half of these assholes across the chops and take the rest in a shuttle to a better show. And, as already noted, the world building (if you even want to dignify it with that name, which I don't) is crap; they've got warp drive, FTL instantaneous holographic communications (I found myself wondering how the holographic FaceTime could know what their backs looked like), and strong AI, but they didn't spend a penny on even very modestly futurizing anything on Earth, not even something as minimal as the popped collars on formal business suits in Aliens.

...shit, I'm talking myself into hatewatching this, aren't I?
posted by Halloween Jack at 5:30 PM on July 28, 2019 [1 favorite]

I'm talking myself into hatewatching this, aren't I?

Don't worry, it starts to grow on you.
posted by Literaryhero at 10:26 PM on July 28, 2019 [2 favorites]

Yeah, I found it unwatchable, even with a bunch of fast-forwarding.

Got through episode one, was bored, then randomly jumped to a third of the way into episode 8. Not much of a spoiler to say there are some fun queer sexy scenes there. At least it's got that, if anyone's looking for a reason to keep going. (I'm not, fwiw.)
posted by mediareport at 3:10 AM on July 29, 2019

I found it hard to get past just the opening scene in ep1. The CGI was sooooooo bad. Like, “maybe just ok if it was 2009” bad.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:03 PM on August 9, 2019

Not a single one of these people would be allowed anywhere near a spaceship in the present day

They have instantaneous communication with Earth, but try to claim the legality of a mutiny without even attempting to check in with their superiors

In fact, we never see them using that instantaneous communication to talk to their support team back on Earth in any way!

It's really disappointing when you start with a premise as big as this, and can't find any way to make it interesting other than making your characters into very stupid assholes
posted by vibratory manner of working at 2:01 AM on June 28, 2020

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