Devs (miniseries)

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Devs
Devs Title Card.png
Genre
Created byAlex Garland
Written byAlex Garland
Directed byAlex Garland
Starring
Composer(s)
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of episodes5 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
CinematographyRob Hardy
Editor(s)Jake Roberts
Running time43–57 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor20th Television
Release
Original networkHulu
Original releaseMarch 5, 2020 (2020-03-05) –
present (present)
External links
Website

Devs is an American drama thriller television miniseries created, written, and directed by Alex Garland that premiered on March 5, 2020, on Hulu, as part of FX on Hulu.[2][3]

Premise[edit]

Devs is centered on Lily Chan (Sonoya Mizuno), a computer engineer investigating a quantum computing company called Amaya, run by Forest (Nick Offerman). She believes this company is responsible for the disappearance of her boyfriend.[2][4][5]

Cast and characters[edit]

Main[edit]

Recurring[edit]

Episodes[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal release date
1"Episode 1"Alex GarlandAlex GarlandMarch 5, 2020 (2020-03-05)
Sergei, an employee of the tech company Amaya, is offered a position on Amaya's secretive quantum computing 'Devs' team by Forest, the CEO. Sergei is shown to the division's futuristic vacuum-sealed lab inside a Faraday cage by Forest, who is elusive when Sergei asks questions about his role there and simply tells him that what he should do will become clear. The code Sergei sees shocks him, and he later surreptitiously records the code using his wristwatch. When Sergei leaves that night, Forest confronts him about stealing the code and has Kenton, the head of Amaya security, kill him as he attempts to run. Sergei's girlfriend Lily, who also works at Amaya (in encryption), worries that he has not come home and reports his disappearance to Kenton and Forest. They show Lily footage appearing to show Sergei walking out of the building and off the company grounds. Unconvinced, Lily downloads a backup of Sergei's phone from the cloud and discovers a suspicious password-protected program disguised as Sudoku, a game Sergei disliked. She contacts her ex-boyfriend Jamie to help her crack the password. Jamie, upset over Lily's total disregard of him after their breakup, refuses to help. Later Lily is shown additional footage of Sergei apparently committing suicide by setting himself on fire.
2"Episode 2"Alex GarlandAlex GarlandMarch 5, 2020 (2020-03-05)
Forest attempts to console Lily and tells her about the death of his own young daughter, Amaya, and the impossibility dealing with such incomprehensible reality. Lily convinces Jamie to crack the program on Sergei's phone and finds it is a Russian government messaging app that Sergei, a suspected industrial spy, was using to contact his handler. Kenton meets Forest at home and advises him to let go of the past. Forest assures him he is, but later uses an interface in the Devs lab, on which the team has achieved a projection of the Crucifixion 2000 years in the past, to view a projection of his daughter. Lily uses the app to arrange a meeting with Sergei's handler, Anton, who tells her Sergei was sent to infiltrate Devs and that he suspects Sergei's death was murder. He offers to bring her onboard in Sergei's place. Kenton watches their meeting. Jamie tries to convince Lily not to contact anyone through the Russian app, not knowing she already has, and offers his support. Lily decides to refuse to cooperate with Anton. Kenton follows Anton into a parking garage and tells him he will kill Lily if she starts working for Russia. Anton derides him over Amaya's secrecy and attacks Kenton, stabbing him, and in the ensuing struggle Kenton breaks Anton's neck.
3"Episode 3"Alex GarlandAlex GarlandMarch 12, 2020 (2020-03-12)
Senator Laine, who wants to use the Devs technology for the US government, visits Amaya and questions Forest about his work. Katie admonishes the Devs team for using the projection system for their own amusement. Lily shares her suspicions with co-workers that Sergei was murdered, who suggest she tell Kenton. Jen mentions that Lily has struggled with schizophrenia in the past, which Kenton reports back to Forest. Lily seems to suffer a breakdown while in a meeting with Kenton and climbs out onto a high-up window ledge, in front of Forest and the senator. When Kenton goes to her rescue, Jen copies data from his computer onto a flash drive — Lily, with Jen's help, had pretended to have the breakdown episode to get the security camera footage from the night of Sergei's death. Lily watches the footage with Jamie, who notices that the flames on the screen are not real, but digital effects. In a flashback, Kenton is shown staging Sergei's suicide.
4"Episode 4"Alex GarlandAlex GarlandMarch 19, 2020 (2020-03-19)
While viewing a future projection with Katie, Forest reveals that Lily will die in two days. Lily and Jamie argue the morning after she stays the night at Jamie's apartment over whether to contact the police. Kenton waits for Lily outside her apartment, where the homeless man treats him with suspicion and offers Lily his support. Kenton pressures Lily into seeing a psychiatrist, with whom she discusses her past drug use and her distant relationship with her mother, who remarried and moved to Hong Kong after Lily's father died. Lyndon develops a new algorithm based on the many-worlds interpretation, rather than the deterministic De Broglie–Bohm theory favored by Forest, that enables clear sound to be heard on the Devs projections, but Forest rejects his work and fires him. The psychiatrist reports back to Kenton that Lily is faking her schizophrenia, but as they drive away, Kenton lies to Lily that the doctor said she was psychotic and at high risk of suicide. When Lily realizes that Kenton is driving her somewhere unknown, she crashes the car by grabbing the wheel, escaping after the impact knocks Kenton unconscious. Katie applies Lyndon's algorithm to light waves, resulting in clear color images, and calls up a projection of Forest's daughter Amaya, causing him to weep. Lily runs to Jamie's apartment, where she calls the police to report Sergei's death as a murder. The police arrive, accompanied by the psychiatrist and Kenton. Lily is arrested for causing the crash and taken away for psychiatric commitment, while Kenton brutally forces Jamie back inside his apartment.
5"Episode 5"Alex GarlandAlex GarlandMarch 26, 2020 (2020-03-26)
Katie views projections of events from various points in time in the Devs lab, including Kenton torturing Jamie, Lily at age ten playing Go with her father and talking to him on his deathbed, Sergei and Lily's first meeting at work and admitting their love for each other for the first time, Forest recruiting Katie at a lecture on the superposition of quantum particles after she argues with the professor for disregarding the many-worlds interpretation, the Devs team working on an early projection trial, Forest witnessing the car accident that killed his wife and daughter (superimposed with one reality in which they arrive home safely), Katie talking to Forest about his reasons for starting Devs, Kenton telling Forest and Katie that he will give them up to the authorities rather than go to jail himself, Lily falling to her death inside the Devs lab, and finally, Jamie telling his family to go into hiding before sneaking a heavily sedated Lily out of the psychiatric ward, which Katie watches with a smile.
6"Episode 6"[6]Alex GarlandAlex GarlandApril 2, 2020 (2020-04-02)
7"Episode 7"[7]Alex GarlandAlex GarlandApril 9, 2020 (2020-04-09)
8"Episode 8"[8]Alex GarlandAlex GarlandApril 16, 2020 (2020-04-16)

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

Alex Garland is the creator, writer, and director of the miniseries.

On March 13, 2018, it was announced that FX had given the production a pilot order. The pilot was written by Alex Garland who also directed and executive produced the episode as well.[9] On July 23, 2018, Rob Hardy mentioned in an interview that he would serve as the cinematographer for the series.[10]

On August 3, 2018, it was announced the during the Television Critics Association's annual summer press tour that FX had decided to bypass the pilot process and instead were giving the production a straight-to-series order consisting of eight episodes. Additional executive producers include Andrew Macdonald, Allon Reich, Eli Bush, and Scott Rudin.[4]

Garland appeared at the New York Comic Con and explained his reasoning behind the creation of the series: "I read more about science than anything else, and it started with two things. One was getting my head around this principle of determinism, which basically says that everything that happens in the world is based on cause and effect...That has all sorts of implications for us. One is that it takes away free will, but the other is that if you are at a computer powerful enough, you could use determinism to predict the future and understand the past. If you unravel everything about you, about the specifics of you why you prefer a cup of coffee to tea...then five seconds before you said you'd like to have a cup of coffee one would be able to predict you'd ask for it."[11] In November 2019, it was announced the show would premiere on Hulu instead of FX, as part of "FX on Hulu".[12] On January 9, 2020, it was announced that the series would premiere on March 5, 2020.[3]

Casting[edit]

Alongside the series order announcement, it was confirmed that Sonoya Mizuno, Nick Offerman, Jin Ha, Zach Grenier, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Cailee Spaeny, and Alison Pill had been cast in the series' main roles.[4]

Filming[edit]

Filming on the series had begun by August 2018, with scenes shot at UC Santa Cruz.[13]

Release[edit]

The first teaser for the series was released October 5, 2019.[14] The first two episodes of the series were released on March 5, 2020, with the rest debuting weekly on Hulu under the label "FX on Hulu".[3] In India, the series premiered on Hotstar on March 6, 2020.[15]

Reception[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, the series has an 82% rating with an average score of 7.76 out of 10 based on 62 reviews. The site's critical consensus reads: "A hauntingly beautiful meditation on humanity, Devs' slow unfurling may test some viewers [sic] patience, but fans of Alex Garland's singular talents will find much to chew on."[16] On Metacritic, it has a score of 70 out of 100 based on 31 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Naudus, Kris (February 18, 2020). "Alex Garland's new show wants you to be scared of tech again". Engadget. Archived from the original on February 19, 2020. Retrieved February 19, 2020.
  2. ^ a b Travers, Ben (October 5, 2019). "'Devs': After 'Annihilation,' Alex Garland Got Sick of Battling with Film Distributors and Turned to TV". IndieWire. Retrieved October 6, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c Petski, Denise (January 9, 2020). "FX Sets Premiere Dates For 'Fargo', 'Mrs. America', 'Better Things', 'Devs', 'Archer' & More – TCA". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 9, 2020.
  4. ^ a b c Petski, Denise (August 3, 2018). "FX Picks Up Tech Thriller 'Devs' to Series; Sonoya Mizuno & Nick Offerman to Lead Cast – TCA". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  5. ^ "FX Releases First Teaser and Exclusive Images For New Limited Series Devs". FX Networks. December 3, 2019. Retrieved January 8, 2020.
  6. ^ "(#106) "Episode 6"". The Futon Critic. Retrieved March 4, 2020.
  7. ^ "(#107) "Episode 7"". The Futon Critic. Retrieved March 10, 2020.
  8. ^ "(#108) "Episode 8"". The Futon Critic. Retrieved March 17, 2020.
  9. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (March 13, 2018). "FX Orders Tech Thriller Pilot 'Devs' From Alex Garland, DNA TV & Scott Rudin". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  10. ^ Collins, James (July 23, 2018). "'Work Hard and listen' Mission: Impossible – Fallout DP Rob Hardy on shooting action movies and more". Mandy. Retrieved December 25, 2018.
  11. ^ Bell, Amanda (October 5, 2019). "Mysterious First Footage from Alex Garland's Devs Finally Revealed". TV Guide. Retrieved October 6, 2019.
  12. ^ Jarvey, Natalie; Goldberg, Lesley (November 7, 2019). "FX to Produce Programming for Hulu". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 7, 2019.
  13. ^ Lee, Shinae (October 5, 2018). "Santa Cruz on the Big Screen". City on a Hill Press. Retrieved January 9, 2020.
  14. ^ Boucher, Geoff (October 5, 2019). "Alex Garland's 'Devs': FX Releases New Images And Teaser – New York Comic Con". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 9, 2020.
  15. ^ Arora, Akhil (February 27, 2020). "Star Wars, Westworld, Ozark, and More: March 2020 TV Guide to Netflix, Hotstar, and Amazon". NDTV Gadgets 360. Retrieved February 28, 2020.
  16. ^ "Devs: Season 1 (2020)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved March 20, 2020.
  17. ^ "Devs". Metacritic. Retrieved March 20, 2020.

External links[edit]