Monday, 3 August 2015

Non spoiler, final dissection of HUMANS !

The finale of this series of Humans was everything I hoped it would be. Suffice to say you should watch it as soon as you are able, if you haven't already.

The problem I have is that I do not want to spoil it for others or signpost the Cliffhanger ...  I am thus not going to review it in my normal way. I have this decided to just speak to what I got from the series beyond a great story

I loved this show because it was not afraid to ask some of the hard questions...

Are we too reliant on technology?

As I sit here writing on my iPad, about to share my random musings;not on paper but through the mediums of Facebook and Twitter, to be read by people all over the world (one hopes), it would be churlish to rail against technology as a help meet.  However I do find it very interesting that people do not wear wristwatches anymore. We use phones to tell us what the time is, we feel stressed if we forget our chargers. Nine times out of ten, we only use them so much because of habit. would we actually die if we did not have access to a phone for the day? Highly unlikely. Life would not be as immediate, we might have to employ some patience when travelling, but at least we would not feel on duty, ready for the next information injection. Notification tones can control us.

Why do we want to stop doing things for ourselves?

The Synths  on the show are the furthest progression of what is already in play in today's society. They do the boring or irritating  things we find irksome , so we don't have to. The  argument being that when menial tasks are done by disinterested but efficient things, it frees us up to be more human by allowing us to do the things that give us joy, fulfilment and enrichment. We may not have such sophisticated slaves. Gadgets are our lives, the sheer number of items in the kitchen alone, that are designed to do things faster or with less effort is mind boggling. Rice cookers, bread makers, microwaves, soup makers... ( a blender that heats... This one really troubles me... Just boil that stuff and blend it for heaven's sake!!)

What do we do with all that extra free time that these gadgets create, spend it with family or improving our health by getting exercise and fresh air? If we are honest , we spend it with other gadgets, watching TV on our catch up services for instance. Whereas  before, we might  have decided that programme A is more likely to give the most enjoyment so we forgo programme B in it's favour, we are more likely to watch both and programme C which might be mediocre, but because we can, we watch it anyway!

On our computers, we spend more  time creating memes or retweeting positive messages than actually being present for each other and being a positive influence. The fracturing in Laura's family was in place before Mia ever arrived. Mattie seeking solace for her dysfunctional relationship with her mum in the chat rooms and notice board of nerdy sites.

Can a machine teach us anything about ourselves?

Leo, Niska, Max, Mia, Fred and "Karen" actually embody the  desire we  each have to be able to engage and be part of a mutually enriching group. They are the most inhuman things physically, but their sentient ability makes them the purest examples of Humanity,  they protect each other, the love without condition and (clever casting means ) they are as different in appearance as can possibly be and yet they exist in perfect harmony and synchronicity. As indicated in the show, they all have very human traits, compassion, loyal, passionate,seeking knowledge. They are what we are in essence before we become distracted by the repetitive patterns of daily life.

It is the humans who are selfish, greedy and lack the ability to communicate, thus adding to their own disassociation from each other. The Synth Odi who provided both company and a source of memory for George was the most robotic and artificial of all the synths in his degraded state, but he provided a link to George's own humanity, thus making him more son and friend than any of the human healthcare professionals who sought to rob him of free will and dignity in his declining years.

The series, whilst being a lovely onion of unraveling mystery and Science Fiction, acted by some very talented people, on looking deeper, it is also quite a telling commentary on us and has made me question a lot about who we, the real Humans are becoming that man made machines can be so very human in comparison. 

Until Season two hits our shores, I will be trying to be more like Leo and the others.

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