Why is Sense8 a good series

"Sense8" series: Soul communism in high end


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When you hear voices, feel baseless waves of emotion, suddenly find yourself in strange places and the halves of your brain grow together, you should think about getting treatment.

Unless you're one of the heroes of Sense8: The Netflix production released on Friday is a series about eight people whose perception suddenly goes crazy. They live all over the world; they had never heard of each other before. Now suddenly they can hear and see each other. Suddenly they leave their bodies and travel to each other's hometowns. They learn that a mutation in their brain makes them a member of a different species: the sensates. Even if it feels like this: A sensate doesn't lose its mind. But, as it says in the series: "The mind expands."

The Wachowski siblings came up with this when they created it in the late 1990s The Matrix have set narrative and design standards. With their current production Sense8 Above all, they prove that absolute creative freedom of television authors does not always lead to the best result. In that case, it would have taken less freedom and more convention to work with Sense8 Writing television history. Apparently the experienced producer J. Michael Straczynski (Babylon 5) as co-author does not stop the two siblings in their exuberant sense of mission.

For some time now, interviews with the Wachowskis have shown that they have cobbled together a kind of private religion: they use motifs of reincarnation and belief in spiritual union as building blocks. Andy Wachowski, for example, said quite unironically about the premiere of the penultimate film Cloud Atlas In an interview about co-director Tom Tykwer, they had "met on the astral plane" before. Also on Sense8 Tykwer is involved again, quite real as a co-director.



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"Everything is connected", at Cloud Atlas this message became an enervating mantra. Sometimes more and sometimes less successfully, the film bridged the gap between the various characters from different ages. At Sense8 everything stays in the here and now. That doesn't make it any less complicated.

Where is the story

Each representative of the Sensates is connected to seven others in a so-called cluster via a kind of telepathic dedicated line. So they form an unusual group of superheroes. Their superpower is the limitless empathy that they feel for one another. Across continents, they can participate in the life of others, empathize with them, and slip into their bodies.

The characters never actually meet until the end of season one. They only come into contact telepathically. There are always the same questions that have to be answered when, for example, Riley from London suddenly finds himself next to the policeman Will in Chicago: Where am I? Who are you? By the time all eight sensates have met, half of the season is over.

Even if the sensates obviously can't get enough of this speed dating on the astral level, it is terribly tiring for the viewer. As it always is when, while following the plot, you have long since grasped something that the characters have yet to understand. When jumping around on the globe, one wonders whether something elementary has not been forgotten here: an exciting story.

In episode eight, the friend of the transsexual Nomi (Jamie Clayton) sums up the weakness of the series herself when her partner once again made telepathic contact with a sensate. She says, "Cool, it's like Facetime without a phone!" You can't get rid of the feeling that you might just be watching a twelve-hour commercial for a new mobile phone network provider.