9.5/10 “Devs” was my #1 most anticipated new television show of 2020 and after having finally watched it, it seems I made the right call. Coming from the brilliant mind of writer/director Alex Garland (“Ex Machina”, “Annihilation”), I’ve been a fan of his screenwriting since before he started directing but once he switched into pulling double duty, he has been putting out consistently fantastic work. I used to prefer my favorite writers and/or directors to stick to films but now that we are in the Golden Age of TV, when film makers are able to direct an entire series, we get many more hours of content than we would get from a two-hour film. I have to give a lot of credit to FX for greenlighting this limited series and letting Garland have creative control over his vision. This is a show that isn’t for everyone since it deals with heavy, philosophical issues dealing with God, technology, free will, determinism, life/death, etc. but for those of us who are interested in these topics, you will be greatly rewarded. To start, the concept/plot of the show is original, creative, thought provoking, challenging and enticing. Garland’s scripts for these episodes contain well developed, fleshed out characters with clear and distinct motivations and intelligent conversations all while remaining entertaining and not becoming pretentious. To be fair, I have heard some people complain that they found this show to be slow, boring and pretentious but I couldn’t disagree more. Perhaps if you don’t care about the issues surrounding the show, you might zone out and find it boring but I was glued to my screen from start to finish and never found the show to slow down or bore me. If you like Garland’s other work you will enjoy this but I guess if you hated his past work (you monster), then you probably wouldn’t enjoy this either. I love how the first few episodes misdirect you in regards to what you think the series will be about and then halfway through the series, switches to what it is really about. I really enjoy each actor’s work and even though most of these characters lack joy and there are about as many smiles cracked as there are episodes of this series, the serious, somber mood reflected the subject matter, so I didn’t mind it at all. This is a diverse, well casted group of actors firing on all cylinders with no weak link in the chain. Sonoya Mizuno continues to be Garland’s good luck charm as she blew me away with how she could go from calm and collected to high intensity anger to painful grief with ease. Nick Offerman, primarily known for comedic performances like “Parks and Recreation” handles his transition to this serious role very well and was extremely convincing. The biggest surprise to me was the character of Lyndon, who I thought was played by a male actor the entire time, only to find out Lyndon was played by a woman named Cailee Spaeny. Between Spaeny and Mizuno, Garland sure loves giving his leading ladies short, boyish haircuts for some reason. The visuals are fantastic with creative production design that look futuristic and realistic. Even Garland’s use of color is masterful and visually pleasing. The score and soundtrack impressed me for the entire duration of the series and was perfectly fitting for the material. The only very minor issues I took with the show were one plot point that I was very easily able to see coming (and I am not someone who ever tries to guess what will happen next; I prefer to just let the plot unfold) and some slightly mixed thoughts on the show’s ending. That being said, I cannot think of any other writer/director who is doing more for the science fiction genre in all of television/film making today than Alex Garland and as he continues to make masterpiece after masterpiece, I am 100% DEVoted to whatever he decides to do next.
#TheDevsIsInTheDetails / #ForestFires / #LyndonHasFallen / #SeizeTheDeus / #SimCity / #AlisonBlackPilled