Dec 9, 2012

Real Humans–A Swedish Speculative Fiction Drama on SBS

Real Humans or Äkta människor in Swedish is a science fiction drama that premiered in Sweden in January and from memory started screening here in November on SBS, straight after Hunted starring Melissa George.


It’s three episodes in and it’s holding my interest.  In some ways its a bit old school science fiction with the concept of human robots (Hubots) or Androids - just cast your mind back to how old Blade Runner or I Robot are. 

Indeed it draws on this tradition more than the current Zombie craze as some misguided Entertainment Hack reported.

Indeed you’d be far better served checking out IMDB than relying on the only Australian review of the show.

This :

In a parallel present the artificial human has come into its own. Robots no longer have anything robot-like about them. New technology and advancements in the field of science have made it possible to manufacture a product - a kind of mechanized servant - that is so similar to a real human that it can often be considered a perfectly good substitute.

The Human Robot (HUBOT) have also given rise to new problems and dilemmas. Thorny legal questions have increasingly started to occupy people's minds and are still waiting to be answered: Who is responsible for the actions of a hubot? Do hubots have some form of "hubot rights"? Should they be paid for their work? As an ever growing number of people form relationships with hubots, the boundaries between human and machine become blurred. When humans make copies of themselves, which are so close to the real thing they form emotional bonds, the questions arises - What does it really mean to be 'human'? [Source IMDB]

contrasted with this:

You know you're getting a bit ropy when you find yourself watching a new Swedish series about hubots (human-looking robots) and wondering why - when they can get perfect eyes, skin and teeth (only marginally more credible than an eastern suburbs facelift) - they still opt for the stilted movements that year 3 students assume when they act like store dummies that have come to life.

Yes the comment on our consumer society, the concept that there where various versions of Hubot, from cheaper basic models to the high end product escaped you.  The possibility that manufacturers/society might not want to produce Hubots indistinguishable from Humans for a number of reasons.

My problem is not that the Swedes didn't shoot for more naturalism and more subtlety, but that I'm watching another stupid show about undead - never living - people without souls who are never given good dialogue.

No. Just no.  You are talking out of your backside.  If you were selling a product you’d be done for false advertising. Poor dialogue?  FFS its in Swedish, the subtitles are an indication of the dialogue. 

This is a booming genre - that I loathe. As somebody who would prefer to watch Dora The Explorer than a Twilight movie, I realise that I'm in the minority in my horror at the faux-horror fashion.

Might be helpful if you did a little research on what genre you are talking about.  I presume you get paid for basically saying I don’t understand it, I don’t want to understand it and I don’t like it.

Let's be quite clear. Zombies, vampires, ghosts, werewolves and hubots don't exist. So they make poor protagonists because they can't engage with humans. Dogs have a better crack at empathy than a fictional undead invention - especially if it originates in Sweden. [Ms Snarky McSnarkster]

And yet these fantastical creatures of our imaginations are almost timeless.  Humans engage with them repeatedly.

And we sometimes wonder why science fiction shows die in the arse when they get here(Australia). Thank goodness the gatekeepers of msm are dying a slow cranky death (figuratively speaking). 

I don’t expect an entertainment reporter to like everything they have to watch but reporting something akin to reality would be nice.

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