In the vein of Black Mirror, Netflix decided to give another anthology series a go. Love, Death & Robots tells 18 stories in 18 episodes, none longer than 18 minutes and none shorter than six. The time frames are much more in accordance with online videos than mainstream television durations.
The show is rated TV-MA and it’s indisputably the hardest TV-MA rating in the history of television, apart from maybe late-night pornography or snuff films. Every episode is filled with copious violence, severe language, and extroverted nudity. Oh, by the way, (nearly) every episode is animated. Don’t let that fool you, though, these aren’t your familiar Saturday morning cartoons.
Tim Miller (director of Deadpool) and David Fincher (subjectively the greatest director of all time) produced the show while Miller also served as the creator. Directors of the episodes include Miller, as well as many art department, animation department, and visual effects veterans who have worked on major live-action and animated features.
Only a handful of the episodes are mediocre or less; nearly all are great with a few being damn-near perfect. The show already sits at #25 on IMDb’s Top TV Shows of all time, though expect it to fall once more casual viewers catch wind of it. Let’s sift through all the love, the death, and the robots and rank the 18 episodes from absolute worst to downright best. All synopses are pulled straight from the streaming provider. No spoilers or plot points that aren’t already mentioned.
18. Alternate History
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Alternate Histories is the only episode that just plainly doesn’t work. Going back in time to kill Adolf Hitler is a tired gag that has to run its course (regardless of how great it would be). The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy-esque form of narration was a fun way to elucidate but didn’t make up for the lack of humour or wit.
Randomness is an art-form and can be done to elevate comedy toward a high quality (as we will explore in one of the later episodes), but Alternate Histories does it the exact wrong way. It doesn’t make a joke from the randomness, it thinks the random references is the joke.
Needless nudity and the lack of humour make this episode the sole swing-and-a-miss in the series. Some may find this one amusing, but it’s not on par with what the rest of the series offers.