Last week, Our Chris reviewed sci-fi noir, Altered Carbon, on Netflix (see his review here). The good-looking series, based on the novel trilogy by Richard K. Morgan, did well for the streaming service and provided plenty of Bladerunner-type thrills.
Now we hear that it has been renewed for a second, eight-episode series. Not only that, but Anthony Mackie will take the lead role from Joel Kinnerman, playing Takeshi Kovacs. You may be thinking, why? Morgan’s cyberpunk novels are set centuries in the future, in a world where humanity has overcome mortality via a technology that allows human consciousness to be transferred from one body. So sort of like Doctor Who.
Netflix hasn’t indicated what path season 2 will take, but the recasting suggests that the show might tackle the next book in the trilogy, Broken Angels, to some extent. That novel is set three decades later, with Kovacs as a member of a mercenary outfit fighting in a corporate war on a planet called Sanction IV. He’s recruited to secure a buried alien artifact, a plot point teased in the first season.
If that’s the case, viewers should expect some big changes for the show. Where Altered Carbon was a neo-noir cyberpunk story that focused on the consequences of wealth inequality, Broken Angels is a very different book that moves toward military science fiction and space opera.
We might have to take a pass on the next series if it goes strictly sci-fi.