I've only seen the first few episodes, but I thought I'd toss out a quick early or initial review because I can't wait to say something about this streaming series.
The story is a fascinating one where we are in a world where people's minds are kept in chips or discs that are inserted at the base of the skull, and when that body dies, they get a new body, or what they call a sleeve. There are a few catches though... if you take a blunt hit to the base of the skull where your disk is, it can kill your personality/data in the disc, thus ending you. But it all depends on one's standing in the social structure of society, because rich people back themselves up constantly, where the poor don't have that kind of option or opportunity.
The series opens following a couple who are some form of criminal or terrorist, but they are confronted by some form of law-enforcement where the woman gets killed by an intentional kill shot to the neck, and the man is arrested.
His chip is imprisoned for over 250 years when a rich man named Bancroft (Purefoy) pays to have him resurrected and installed into a top-notch, well trained sleeve, Kinnaman.
Bancroft bought Kovacs (Kinnaman) out of sleep to help investigate his own murder. You would think that Bancroft would remember who killed him, but it was executed in such a fashion that they killed him within a window of time that was not backed up from his chip to a mainframe. It was done in such a way that it seems like an inside job.
But Kovacs is more angry and rough around the edges plus he would rather be asleep than awake, because as far as he's concerned, when his partner was killed, he has no real reason to live and doesn't want to be reminded of her in his waking days.
But something sways him to stay up and awake because almost as soon as he's awake, people are coming for him. If they're coming for him because of who he was/is, or because of what he's investigating.
What's raw about Kovacs is that he doesn't give his rich employer any space because he's rich or powerful. And he digs up some great dirt on Bancroft, none of which, he denies.
All the while, officer Higareda (Ortega) has the hots for Kovacs, meaning, she is seriously focused on him because she feels that since he was a criminal element the last time he was alive, that he'll slip up again and she'll be there to arrest him and put him back on ice.
The society they build in the story is fascinating, where we see rich people pick their own sleeves or even clone themselves to be in the same sleeve, while poor people can find 7-year-olds being slapped in 70-year-old bodies, just because it's what they had on hand.
I love his casting.
Purefoy plays the tough rich man perfectly, along with his wife of hundreds of years, the beautiful Miriam Bancroft (Kristen Lehman). We've seen Lehman before in Ghost Wars, Rogue, and the wonderfully spun detective series, called Motive.
Altered Carbon is a very entertaining story. It's a mix of detective story, personal journey, sex and naked bodies. Yes, I've distinguished between sex and naked. Some times I'm thinking, did we pull up an HBO or Cinemax show? There's sex, then sometimes, there's the sleeves, laying there, waiting to be inhabited, and they are naked clones, hence, the distinguished differences.
The show is peppered with tech, violence and sex. The sex is not too overdone, but it is there every episode so far. The show is not shy about that and if that was not a body double, Purefoy as something to be seriously proud of! Yes, we get male frontal swinging nudity!
Altered Carbon is a good, gritty series and I'm enjoying watching this look at our future world.
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