Apple TV Plus is now a sci-fi TV show utopia – here are 4 series you need to watch
Apple TV Plus has become the go-to streaming service for the best science fiction shows to watch today.
It’s unsurprising in some ways. Apple has always been a company focused on aspirational technology and that has carried over into its programming, with thoughtful, well-designed sci-fi series that take us into imaginative visions of what the world could one day be.
One of Apple TV’s latest sci-fi series, Silo, is currently releasing episodes weekly, making it a great time to explore the genre on the TV streaming service. Whether you’re after subversive workplace satires about brain implants, alternate histories of the space race, or big-budget adaptations of Isaac Asimov, Apple TV truly has it all.
Here are the four best sci-fi shows on Apple TV – though do check out our guide to the best sci-fi movies too.
First, Silo. This post-apocalyptic drama takes place in an underground bunker called the Silo, which seemingly hosts the last remnants of humanity after a cataclysmic event left the Earth’s surface entirely uninhabitable.
Starring Rashida Jones (Parks and Recreation) and Rebecca Ferguson (Dune, Mission: Impossible), and based on the Wool series of novels by Hugh Howey, Silo is a slow-burn mystery that gradually unfolds as inhabitants of the Silo begin to question whether everything they’ve been told by the authorities that oversee the bunker – and the world outside – is actually true.
The season consists of 10 episodes, releasing weekly, with only four having dropped at the time of writing – so there’s very much time to jump on this train as new twists and turns emerge.
In this unmissable workplace satire, the show's creator Dan Erikson offers a techno-dystopian take on the question of work-life balance: if you could use a brain implant to split your psyche between work and leisure, leaving your primary personality free from drudgery and condemning your work persona to a never ending office basement, would you do it?
In Severance, the employees at a shadowy corporation called Lumon Industries do just that. They severe their work personas to ensure they know nothing of the mysterious but presumably all-important work that goes on at Lumon’s lower levels. All that changes when one employee tries to reintegrate both sides of his psyche, setting off a chain of doubt and suspicion amongst the other members of staff.
Produced by comedy legend Ben Stiller, and starring the likes of Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation), John Turturro (The Big Lebowski), Britt Lower (Man Seeking Woman) and Christopher Walken (Seven Psychopaths), it’s an astonishing ensemble cast – each playing a key part as the story progresses. With an incredible finale cliffhanger, we really can’t wait until Severance season 2, but for those yet to dive in now is absolutely the time to do so.
When you cross the legendary sci-fi author Isaac Asimov with Apple TV, you get Foundation. This sprawling space epic is inspired by Asimov’s series of novels of the same name, taking place in a galaxy where a powerful interplanetary empire has sustained for thousands of years, ruled by the clones of an ancient emperor.
The action kicks off when a young girl, unusually adept at mathematics, solves a long-unsolvable paradox and is thrust into the empire’s political sphere – where a mathematician claims to be able to algorithmically predict the downfall of the empire itself.
With Lee Pace starring as Brother Day, the middle-aged clone of Emperor Cleon I, and a star-studded cast that includes Alfred Enoch (How To Get Away With Murder) and Jared Harris (Mad Men, Chernobyl), this big-budget TV show offers a truly epic story against its galactic backdrop. Expect space stations, clones, mysterious artifacts, interplanetary diplomacy and math-based oracles galore.
For All Mankind
This historical revisionist space race drama imagines what would happen if the Soviets had been the first to land on the moon, instead of the United States. This surprisingly deft drama starts with small disparities from our own timeline, which cascade into huge, world-changing events.
We’ve had three seasons released so far, with a fourth on the way – each of which take place in consecutive decades. Each season shows the development of space exploration in a world where the space race between two major nations never really slowed down, taking us to orbital space hotels and even a Mars landing before hitting the 2000s. Definitely one to watch.