The Aliens (TV series)

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The Aliens
Series title against a concrete wall
Genre Science fiction
Comedy
Drama
Created by Fintan Ryan
Directed by Jonathan van Tulleken
Lawrence Gough
Starring Michael Socha
Michaela Coel
Michael Smiley
Jim Howick
Holli Dempsey
Opening theme "Alive & Amplified" by The Mooney Suzuki
Composer(s) Vince Pope
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 1
No. of episodes 6
Production
Executive producer(s) Petra Fried
Matt Jarvis
Murray Ferguson
Producer(s) Charlie Leech
Running time 46 minutes
Production company(s) Clerkenwell Films
Release
Original network E4
Picture format 16:9 1080i
Audio format 5.1 Surround Sound
Original release 8 March (2016-03-08) – 12 April 2016
External links
Website

The Aliens is a British science fiction television series created by Fintan Ryan. It is set 40 years after aliens land in the Irish Sea and are reluctantly integrated into British society in the fictional city of Troy. Border guard Lewis Garvey, played by Michael Socha, is caught up in the criminal underbelly of Troy as he learns he is himself half-alien.[1][2]

The six-episode series also stars Michaela Coel, Michael Smiley and Jim Howick, and is produced by Clerkenwell Films for E4. The first episode was released on 8 March 2016.[3][4] Ryan had previously written BBC shows Never Better and In the Flesh.[1]

Overview[edit]

Coel told Radio Times that The Aliens addresses "urgent contemporary concerns" not limited to racism; during the filming of the series at Nu Boyana Film Studios in Bulgaria, she reported she experienced racist attacks.[5] Speaking to The Guardian's Gabriel Tate, Ryan acknowledged links with the show's narrative and the ongoing European migrant crisis: "With immigrants, there’s a colonial history that leaves you in debt to them. Here, we don’t owe them [the aliens] anything, but they’ve landed on our planet and we’ve got to do something with them."[3]

Viral marketing for The Aliens was organised by Channel 4's in-house creative agency 4Creative. Centred on the slogan "Fight Human Oppression", the faux-political campaign interrupted several Channel 4 shows throughout February 2016. It also appeared on radio and cinema, interrupting DCM's usual ident.[6] Shots featured a female member of the "Alien League" asking the viewer for help "fighting human oppression", before being wrestled away.[7]

Broadcast[edit]

Following its April conclusion, the show also aired on Space in Canada in May.[8] It concluded on 8 June 2016. In Germany, ZDFneo aired the show in October 2016.

Cast and characters[edit]

Episodes[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Episode 1"Jonathan van TullekenFintan Ryan8 March 2016 (2016-03-08)
2"Episode 2"Jonathan van TullekenFintan Ryan15 March 2016 (2016-03-15)
3"Episode 3"Jonathan van TullekenFintan Ryan22 March 2016 (2016-03-22)
4"Episode 4"Lawrence Gough[9]Fintan Ryan29 March 2016 (2016-03-29)
5"Episode 5"Lawrence Gough[9]Joe Brown and Fintan Ryan5 April 2016 (2016-04-05)
6"Episode 6"Lawrence Gough[9]Fintan Ryan12 April 2016 (2016-04-12)

Reception[edit]

The List's Brian Donaldson compared the show to the 2015 Humans, and wrote that "from almost its opening scene, The Aliens dives headlong into the issues it wants to tackle... politicians talking about building walls is barely off the news just now and The Aliens taps right into this."[2] Tim Dowling of The Guardian called "Tremendous fun."[10]

Channel 4 announced in May 2016 that The Aliens would not be renewed for a second series.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Aliens: Derby actor Michael Socha to star as half-human, half-alien, in new TV series". Derby Telegraph. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  2. ^ a b "TV review: The Aliens, E4". The List. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  3. ^ a b Tate, Gabriel (2016-03-02). "Dog whistles, dishwasher tablets and narcotic fur: behind the scenes of sci-fi drama The Aliens". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  4. ^ NME.COM. "E4's 'The Aliens': Sci-Fi Goes Gangster | NME.COM". NME.COM. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  5. ^ "Chewing Gum star Michaela Coel experienced 'racist attack' while filming The Aliens in Bulgaria". RadioTimes. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  6. ^ "DCM's cinema ad interrupted by The Aliens in Channel 4 takeover". www.campaignlive.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  7. ^ "'The Aliens' fight human oppression in anticipation of E4's new show". The Drum. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  8. ^ "U.K. hit The Aliens to premiere in Canada on May 4". 
  9. ^ a b c "Michael Socha and Michaela Coel star in E4's Aliens (w/t)". Channel 4. 2 September 2016. Retrieved 11 April 2016. 
  10. ^ Dowling, Tim (2016-03-09). "The Aliens review: otherworldly fun from the makers of Misfits". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2016-03-20. 
  11. ^ "Channel 4 axes Michaela Coel and Michael Socha drama The Aliens". RadioTimes. Retrieved 2017-05-03. 

External links[edit]