Adapted from the homonym novel written by Nick Clark Windo and published in 2018, The Feed (2019) is the latest best visual experience that I’ve encountered. Broadcasted on Amazon Prime in France, The Feed is an unique production. In this article, I will analyze the aspects of the show, that makes it so special.
The theatrical and dynastic family
The Feed is first a visual experience about one of the richest family in the world : The Hatfield. In their Londoner mansion, the family and especially the father, Lawrence Hatfield (played by David Thewlis) has the world in his hands. Intelligent, authoritarian and self-centered, Lawrence is guided by his visions and his desires. His wife, Meredith (played by Michelle Fairley) is her feminine alter ego, with maybe more common sense and humanity. The couple has succeeded and built their career with verve and consistency but in terms of parenthood, they have failed. Their sons Tom and Ben are perfectly opposed and have nothing in common. Ben is the perfect figure of the « bastard » and illegitimate son, an insecure and total jerk. And with have Tom, the favorite one, which has built his career and life, far away from his crazy family.
The Hatfield are the perfect archetype of the multi-billionaire family where the siblings have nothing in common but blood. They incarnate a mogul family, that detain a power on politics and real leaders. Their creation, the Feed is controlling the lives of half of the planet and Hatfield lives. The continuity of the show will confirm that the family disunity is maybe the Feed limits.
the DANGEROUS PART of technology IN OUR LIVES
The Feed is more than a digital system, it’s a way of life, it’s life itself. Installed in everybody minds and eyes, the Feed is inseparable of ourselves. The Feed is intuitive, it connects people just by s simple thought and above all, it’s public. TV and screens are obsolete, our minds and eyes are the new computers. In the UK, the Feed is well perceived but a resistance is palpable. As an human construction, the Feed has its flaws and its resistants. The TV show is an another fiction about the hold of technology on our lives. As I have lately saw an another show called Brave New World ( that I recommend, also a Starz production). We can tell that a new generation of screen storytelling, apprehending the roles of AI and technology is flourishing in front of us. And by opposition of Black Mirror, in The Feed we know the villain. Humanity can no longer tolerate its passiveness about a minority of men directing our virtual and cognitive decisions.
The resistance in The Feed is incarnated by a virus causing some glitches in people minds during their sleeps. Those glitches are more than intercepting people sleeps, it’s a violation of people minds and intimacy. By intercepting the Feed, the resistants are calling out the world about the Feed and its immorality. And the major problem with those glitches, is that they occur to be mind replacements. You fall asleep and awake in someone else body. I’m not sure that in real life humans will accept to be driven by a wireless intelligence in their bodies. But seeing the advancement of new technologies, mass surveillance and social media transparency rights, the Feed is just a metaphor of what could happen, a thrilling and violent metaphor one.
HUMAN BODIES ARE STILL THE DOORS to TECHNOLOGY SUPREMACY
Finally, as in every dystopian fiction, we can conclude that technology is not the problem : Humans are. The Feed has awaken my attention more than any dystopian and futuristic show that I have ever seen, especially for the importance of biology and heredity. The case of Kate and Tom baby is the climax of narcissism, biological evolutionism and genetics. By influencing a pregnancy to wire the Feed to a foetus, the show is calling out the absurdity of technology advancements and digital continuity. And as in Black Mirror or Westworld, The Feed reminds us that technologies or AI and datas are maybe nothing without the human body. We can also see a biblical aspect in it, where procreation is vital for humanity survival and also, for sciences durability.
The Feed as Brave New World (2020), is choosing transhumance as a response to progress and at the same time, chaos. Human bodies seem to be the last barriers to our own destinies. The Feed is also a reminder of of the powers we have us, the people. We have to take care of our virtual and digital decisions, our data, our financial trackability or even the visibility of our social lives. Our lives wether they are digital or reel are the new currency. If we give access with such an ease to big companies and leaders, humanity will be under technologies moguls ubiquity quicker than we think. The show is about taking back the control our lives, bodies and mind.
In conclusion, The Feed is the perfect mix of polar, futuristic and philosophical issues. It’s not too scientific, the tv show tests our sensibilities and human boundaries about the power of own thoughts and selves. The best thing to me concerning the show is the intensification following the episodes and the final scene which is a spectacular worthy of science fiction and fantasy. I was already convinced by the talent of the British concerning dystopian stories, combining great storytelling and visual. The Feed has proven to me an umpteenth time the genius of British directors and writers concerning futurists stories.
The Feed is available on Amazon Prime. Don’t miss it.
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