For All Mankind is amazingly good tv

The Americans were the first to put a man on the Moon. What would’ve happened if the Soviets had beaten them to it? The makers of For All Mankind think it would’ve encouraged the US government to make space its number one priority.

For All Mankind is an alternative history drama about the astronauts and ground control workers at NASA. It follows their mission from their first lunar landing through to building a settlement on the Moon and making plans to visit Mars.

In our timeline Pathfinder is a Mars rover, an unmanned robotic spacecraft. In the tv show it’s a next generation space shuttle designed to take people to Mars.

The world of For All Mankind is like ours, but just a little bit different. Laptops, electric cars and digital mail appear earlier because of technology developed for space travel. Ronald Reagan is still president, but he’s preceded by Ted Kennedy. Prince Charles marries Camilla in 1981, avoiding Diana entirely. And women’s rights are given a much needed boost thanks to NASA’s use of female astronauts.

I love this show for several reasons. It works as a historical drama set in the late 1960s to early 1980s. The makers have done a great job recreating the fashions, interiors and attitudes of the era.

The scenes in space and on the Moon are brilliant. Someone on the show’s design team has put real effort into creating a lunar landscape that is both stark and beautiful.

I love the show’s sense of adventure. The astronauts get into all kinds of trouble in space and on Earth. If you enjoy edge of your seat drama you’ll love For All Mankind.

Most of all, I love the characters and the way they develop over the two seasons. Look out for astronaut Molly Cobb. She’s the best!

For All Mankind seasons one and two were made by Sony Pictures Television for Apple TV.

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