Season 2 of Sense 8 came upon us with barely a murmur. Unlike many other Netflix originals there seemed to be little promotion for the second season. No major announcements, no TV adverts. Maybe I just missed them, but it seems unlikely, I was looking out – I have an interest.
Netflix “treated” us to a Christmas / New Year special in December which almost acted like a pilot for Season 2, but in reality it was a pilot we didn’t need. Very little happened in “Happy Fucking New Year” despite it being 2 hours long. Nothing really drove the plot forward and we didn’t learn a great deal about what was coming up in season 2 so it seemed like a place holder. A “Hey, remember us, we’ll be back soon.”
Season 1 had been full of promise and interest
Season 1 had been full of promise and interest, teasing and suggesting without giving the game away or telling us too much about the nature of the Sensates’ powers, or why someone is so keen to capture them.
To me the Christmas Special did more to put me off season 2 that get me excited for it. I may be alone in this though because the IMDB ratings show that it was an episode that was overwhelmingly loved by the Netflix viewership, getting an 8.8 rating. Strangely many of the comments seem to express the same concerns as mine, while still giving the episode 8 or 9 stars.
Anyway, for me by the time the rest of Season 2 was imminent I wasn’t that interested.
Consequently it took me nearly 2 weeks to get round to watching any of more of it. But I’m glad I did…
…now I’m hooked.
[Beware of spoilers below]
Throughout the first few episodes of this series there have been multiple and regular scenes of action, emotion, intellect and revelation. The characters are all well acted and well-rounded in their quest for understanding. As a viewer you feel a sympathy for them because you’re learning along with them. Plus they’re generally interesting people you’d like to spend time with.
The film-makers have created a cogent and coherent theory about how this fits into the the evolution of the Homo Sapiens / Homo Sensate species. Of course it’s made up and silly, but it’s internally consistent, and pretty (kind of) scientifically sound in giving a reason for these fictional symptoms/powers. It taps into the current scientific frontiers that show there were multiple species of advanced apes at the same time, only one of which survived. It doesn’t really explain how members of a cluster are linked to each other at such a distance, but maybe that will come in time.
You have to admire the sheer brilliance of the logistics
It’s also incredibly well planned and put together. The level of organisation and discipline for the script writing and filming of this show must have been incredible. To me it’s like your worst logistical nightmare. You have locations all over the world, but you need all of the main characters available in all of the locations, sometimes only for a tiny bit of one scene. You also need to film the same scenes multiple times from different perspectives in different countries. Whether you love the show or not you have to admire the sheer brilliance of the logistics.
So now, 5 episodes in, I am writing this to heartily recommend Sense8 to you. Just don’t watch it with your kids.
I seem to spend to much of my life thinking what I just watched is the best thing ever. It often takes a moment (or a week or two) of reflection to really work out whether what I’ve just watched is really brilliant. During season 1 I didn’t think Sense 8 was. During Season 2 I think it just might have a chance.