Maniac is a limited series based on the Norwegian series of the same name (though many things have been changed as far as I’m aware). Its a Psychological Sci-fi drama with an awful lot of dark humour thrown in. There is also a whole lot of bizarre quirkiness…which leads me to the 5 reasons why you will become obsessed with Maniac
THE RETRO FUTURE AESTHETIC
If you put Maniac side by side with Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, the obvious comparison to be made is the Retro Future setting. I love this aesthetic, it’s clear that Maniac is a weird mixture of 60’s, 80’s and the present time albeit in an alternative universe to our own. The attention to detail in creating the world of Maniac is impeccable and the experience is fully immersive and the fact that no real world issues are explored there isn’t a hint of preachiness in the storyline at all which is also rather refreshing.
Okay, Annie and Owen are awesome, beautifully realised complex characters but Azumi, one of the central scientists on the drug trial, is personally for me the best character in the series. I don’t know what it is…it could be the similar haircut and glasses, the apparent lack of emotions, the cool fashion sense, her overall juxtapositions in characterisation. Either way she’s an awesome character and I’m kinda obsessed.
Monday mornings got me like…
DREAMS VS REALITY
I love how this show deals with Dreams vs Reality. Annie abuses a drug so that she can see her dead sister in a hallucinatory state. It’s totally messed up and dark, but it makes sense, its rather painfully beautiful. Owen himself is stuck in a family dilemma and struggles with the possibility that he may be suffering from schizophrenia.
Maniac raises the question, would you rather be stuck in a dream than face the reality of the situation?
I love Science Fiction, it’s one of my favourite genres in film, tv and literature. I also am extremely interested in Robotics and AI, I think it’s so fascinating. GRTA is a quirky computer that was the brainchild of the equally quirky characters Dr Azumi Fujita and Dr James Mantleray. I’m not going to spoil anything but a self aware computer is never a good thing in fiction is it?
This is a series that you have to pay attention to, it’s full of recurring details, connections and faces. But your attention will be rewarded with one of the most thought provoking and emotionally rich tv series I’ve watched in quite a while. And once you finish the series you’re going to want to restart the journey all over again.
So what are you waiting for…