TV

Thoughts on Channel 4’s ‘Humans’

Throughout this article, I have explored how synths and robots can help to define human nature, but has Humans cleverly explained the complexity of human nature in full, in its first series? Whilst I feel as though humanity can never be completely defined – nor can there be one definition which everyone agrees upon – I think the show does outline the main aspects which explain what it means to be human: free will, suffering, feelings and memories.

Finally, I thought I’d conclude by sharing my thoughts on Humans as a whole, as well as predictions for the second series.

Overall, Humans is one of the most unique and thought-provoking dramas I have ever watched. It’s similar in style to one of my favourite shows, Utopia, with deep topical discussions hidden underneath the drama. The show contains great acting all round, but Neil Maskell (Pete), Colin Morgan (Leo), Katherine Parkinson (Laura) and Gemma Chan (Anita/Mia) deserve praise for their roles in particular.

As for what I think will happen in series two, the finale of the first series definitely raises a few questions. First of all, with Niska having a strong dislike towards humans, it’s likely that she will put her copy of the ‘consciousness simulation’ online. With the We Are People protests happening in the series one finale, I really hope we see the clash between protestors and conscious synthetics in the second series.

Then we also have the character of Hobb, which I think still poses a threat for the conscious synths. For instance, in the last episode, we hear one of the scientists saying that Hobb has a ‘failsafe’ after the synths escape for the first time. I don’t know whether this ‘failsafe’ actually took place in the final episode, but if it didn’t, it’s likely that it will present a big threat in the second series.

Additionally, with Detective Pete Strummond wanting answers, it’s likely that he will want to track Hobb down to confront him about everything. However, I can’t help but feel as though he won’t give Pete the answers he’s looking for. Instead, I think Hobb’s confusing relationship with Karen/Beatrice will get in the way and maybe lead to him blackmailing Strummond in some way. Nevertheless, I look forward to seeing how the show develops.

What did you think of the series and where do you think they will go with the show next? What do you think about artificial intelligence – do they pose a threat? Comment below!

Liam

17 comments

  1. this is a great insight into the programme. i was unsure about it at first, it seemed too focussed on the family/synth relationship but i loved the uncovering of the david elster narrative. the most interesting thing i found about the show was the varying reactions from people, particularly those who are scared of something that ultimately, we have created. definitely looking forward to another series!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to admit I feared that it would be the same – too focussed on the family! But like you say I loved the Elster narrative (if anything though, it would have been great for him to have still been alive – that could have been *really* interesting)!

      Absolutely! There’s a mixture between curiosity and fear towards the synths and I think that’s what makes it a great series! I can’t wait for series two either!

      Thanks for commenting!

      Like

  2. Fantastic recap of Humans – what can I say, I loved the series. I came to know about it 1 am early hours one Saturday, it was portrayed as an advert, advertising people to order their synths now. Myself and my group of friends were shocked, our mouths dropped open and then we got into a heated debate about how human rights and robotic right were set to blur. Meanwhile, I was checking how I could order one and then realised it was actually a TV series…

    I’ve been following robotics for some time and it’s quite remarkable how Japan and other countries have began the production and investment of robots in the work place. There’s a well known robot who’s a stand in actress over in Japan too and although you can tell (for now) she or it, is a robot, it brings home how quick technology is advancing. Of course in my opinion, this has been happening for years yet the general public are last to know …

    What do I think about AI? Well let’s face it, we’re run by AI already – everything from cash machines to automated phone messaging. We’re just not frighted of it because it doesn’t look human and it has a human behind it. I guess the only thing that separates us and AI is consciousness, which some humans don’t even have, so perhaps we’ve robots among us already… Programming consciousness however, some would say because it’s programmed, it’s not consciousness according to free will therefore it’s not the same as human consciousness. It could be argued however especially if you believe in a higher power, that it was it who programmed us to have consciousness. Even if you don’t believe in a higher power, it’s no shocker that out brain and body responds to nature and in a way, nature programs us. How are body and brain function is down to out DNA, chemical and neurological coding… So actually we’re not that different to A.I really.

    I do think it would pose a huge amount of issues if A.I lived among us as humans – if they can feel, think, make decisions, care, love and everything else then would it be human of us to hurt them – love them etc. Human rights would have a field day – we find it hard to accept other colours and religions never mind another race made out of Science.

    But then again, evolution is why we’re here so maybe this is the next step for us only time will tell.

    I am really looking forward to see where the writers takes this though!

    Thanks Liam

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for such an interesting comment!

      Intriguing what you said about us already having AI what with cash machines etc… Perhaps we’re alright with technological advancements at this stage because there’s a mutual dependence on the technology (i.e. human needs technology for purpose, technology needs human to function). I think that’s where this fear of an uprising comes from (our authority, or this ‘mutual dependence’ is redundant when they have consciousness).

      So many interesting discussions to be had! Interesting what you said about the robot in Japan – I really must have a look into all this. Thank you!

      Like

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