All posts tagged: banal seem epic

‘For All Mankind’ Transforms Our Understanding of History

‘For All Mankind’ Transforms Our Understanding of History

This article contains spoilers through Season 4, Episode 1 of  For All Mankind. For All Mankind treats the future as a matter of physics. The Apple TV+ series started its story with a national trauma: The United States loses to the U.S.S.R. in the race to put a man on the moon. That one change to the timeline bends the trajectory of everything that follows until, like a space capsule that has gone off course, the show’s version of history ends up far from the one we know. Some conflicts dissipate; new ones arise in their place. Some familiar technologies emerge; others never come. The superpowers, caught in a Cold War that never ends, establish separate colonies on the moon. Humans go to Mars. They bring Earth’s problems with them. The show’s universe is familiar and uncanny at once, and this is part of the joy of watching it: For All Mankind, as it merges the world-building powers of science fiction with the provocations of alternate history, turns time’s march into an endless cliff-hanger. What will …