Raised by Wolves Review: “Mass” and “Umbilical”

“I’m a doctor, I’m not a mechanic!”

Raised by Wolves serves up two of its strongest episodes this week, though they are not for all tastes. The conflict between and within factions grows as Marcus becomes increasingly unhinged, Mother makes some significant discoveries, and we’re reminded again that all the advanced tech in the universe can be foiled by a weak password.

And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Kepler-22B to be born?

Titles: “Mass,” “Umbilical”

Cast and Crew

Directors: Alex Gabassi, James Hawes
Writers: Sinead Daley, Aaron Guzikowski

Amanda Collin as Mother
Abubakar Salim as Father
Travis Fimmel as Marcus
Sienna Guillory as Mary
Niamh Algar as Sue
Jordan Loughran as Tempest
Felix Jamieson as Paul
Carel Nel as Karl
Aasiya Shah as Holly
Ethan Hazzard as Hunter
Winta McGrath as Campion
Matias Varela as Lucius
Ivy Wong as Vita
Litha Bam as Bartok
Clayton Evertson as Dorian
Loulou Taylor as Cassia
Fadzai Simango as Leash
Brendan Sean Murray, Adrian Schiller, and Danie Janse Van Rensburg as Otho

Premise

The factions who oppose Marcus rally, Mother discovers emotions—and other growing concerns. Hunter restores Father, and a character believed dead returns.

We learn that the Kepler creatures are compatible with earth life-forms, while the Necromancer technology came from an unknown source. These solutions to established mysteries raise other questions, and I suspect the answers will not be very comforting.

High Points

These episodes feature many, including the terrific flashback to a terrorist attack on the crowd boarding the space-ark. What impressed me the most was the disturbingly real portrayal of Paul and Mary as they realize their parent and partner has changed. The man who was once their rock has moved from survivor to con-man to deranged true believer. The episodes also capture the horrors of those who realize they’re now involved in a twisted cult, predicated less on their religious views than the personality of the demagogue who now runs things.

Who goes there?

Low Points

Shoving the eye, which possesses tech that might as well be magical, into your apparently dead enemy’s mouth seems a very stupid thing to do, and one which, I suspect, stems from developments that have to occur next week, rather than any credible motivation.

The Scores:

Originality: 4/6

Acting: 5/6 The episode features strong acting from the established principals (Travis Fimmel is terrifying), reasonably good performances from the other regulars, and a memorable turn by Carel Nel as Karl, a surviving medical droid.

Story: 6/6 The plot keeps the pressure on the characters. This episode earns its score for giving so many characters important moments of development. Hunter even redeems himself.

I’ll ignore, for now, a couple of forced developments.

Production: 6/6

Effects: 6/6 These episodes feature impressive effects, including more body horror than we’ve seen previously.

Emotional Response: 6/6

Overall: 5/6 The show has been revived for a second season, beyond next week’s finale.

In total, Raised by Wolves, Episodes 8-9, receive 38/42

2 replies on “Raised by Wolves Review: “Mass” and “Umbilical””

  1. lost says:

    I thought I had some idea who the teams were. And then these two episodes happened. This whole thing seems to be leaning into grimdark territory, which I suppose shouldn’t be terribly surprising.

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