Just a few days ago, we were given a slither of photos and an almost Weyland-Yutoni-meets-Westworld style commercial for Psychasec, the company that can enable you to “live forever, in the body you deserve”.
Altered Carbon is based on Richard K. Morgan’s cyberpunk noir novel and set some 300 years in the future. The 10-part series takes place in a dystopian world where human consciousnesses is digitized and stored in cortical stacks implanted in the spine, allowing humans to survive physical death by having their memories and consciousness “re-sleeved” into new bodies.
The story follows specially trained “Envoy” soldier Takeshi Kovacs – played by both Will Yun Lee (The Wolverine) and Joel Kinnaman (Robocop) – who is downloaded from an off-world prison and into the body of a disgraced cop at the behest of Laurens Bancroft (James Purefoy), a highly influential aristocrat. Bancroft was killed and the last automatic backup of his stack was made hours before his death, leaving him with no memory of who killed him and why. While police ruled it a suicide, Bancroft is convinced he was murdered and wants Kovacs to find out the truth.
Now, on the Altered Carbon Facebook page is a brand new teaser that offers a few more tantalizing glimpses of what this show has to offer…and frankly, it looks like it has the best production design since The Expanse.
In addition to quick frames that show off the characters and give a better look at Bay City circa 2384, we also get a better look at Kovacs, in his original body. Lee plays the character in flashbacks, but the series takes place after he’s been “resleeved” into Kinnaman’s body. Naturally – and quite rightly – there have been concerns about another instance where an Asian person is placed into a white body, like Ghost in the Shell (2017), but it seems like Netflix has opted for a very sensible full disclosure approach early on. Hopefully it will be handled in a professional and appropriate manner.
The pilot is being directed by Miguel Sapochnik who also directed the episode “Battle of the Bastards” in Game of Thrones.
Altered Carbon launches on Netflix on Friday, 2 February 2018.
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