Bestselling novelist Gillian Flynn (‘Sharp Objects’, ‘Gone Girl’) brings her usual flair of shock, suspense, blood, and violence to Prime Video’s ‘Utopia’, the US adaptation of the cult British series of the same name. it revolves around a group of comic book fans/conspiracy theorists as they draw the attention of a clandestine deep-state organization after they become aware of the existence of the highly sought-after sequel to a graphic novel that ominously but accurately has predicted various recent pandemics.
All five members of the group seem to be naturally gifted when it comes to noticing hidden patterns and clues, although they lead vastly different lives. Wilson Wilson (Desmin Borges), is a doomsday prepper whose father is also a conspiracy theorist. Becky (Ashleigh LaThrop) is a mellow but intelligent girl who is suffering from a mysterious illness that often causes her to have seizures. Ian (Dan Byrd) is an everyman who works for an insurance company in the day and speculates about different conspiracies with his friends at night. Samantha (Jessica Rothe) is the brilliant and uncontested leader of the group. Grant is the youngest member of the group and hails from a poor family, although neither of this information is known by his fellow conspiracy theorists. They all hope that as the recently-discovered manuscript, Utopia, is a sequel of Dystopia, it may have some clues about the next pandemic or, as in Becky’s case, solutions to existing diseases.
Utopia Season 1 Recap
The show begins with all five initial main characters traveling to Chicago where the manuscript for Utopia has just become available for purchase. This is the first time that the online friends are meeting each other in person. Later that evening, two mysterious men, Arby (Christopher Denham) and Rod, arrive and start murdering all the people who have seen even a page of the graphic novel. Grant somehow manages to run away with the manuscript. Jessica Hyde (Sasha Lane), the heroine of the two graphic novels, arrives and kills Rod while he and Arby are torturing Wilson. She later kills Samantha as well, realizing that her natural leadership qualities may pose a threat in the future to her own control over the group. Arby and Rod work for Dr. Kevin Christie (John Cusack), who is a powerful pharmaceuticals entrepreneur as well as the apparent head of the shadowy organization called the Harvest.
Jessica grew up in a place she calls the “Home”, and as the series progresses, it becomes evident that she has been experimented on during her time there, including by her own father, who seemingly used to work for the Harvest at one point. The organization gathers children from all over the world and brings them up for various purposes. As Christie says several times in the course of the series, “What have you done to earn your place in this crowded world?” Some of these children become lab rats like Jessica, while others turn into assassins like Arby. Some even are fated to become martyrs like Charlotte, whose deaths serve the organization’s overall agenda.
The Grand Plan
Michael Stearns (Rainn Wilson) is a virologist who discovers that the virus he had previously found in Peru has found its way into the US and has killed hundreds of school children. He joins forces with the conspiracy theorists after his wife of several years turns out to be a Harvest sleeper agent. They initially think that Christie and his organization are planning to cause a mass genocide and they destroy a petting zoo realizing that they are using the rabbits there to spread the virus. However, when Stearns runs some tests, he finds out that it is not his virus, making the vaccine that he has developed completely useless.
Arby, who has a change of heart after discovering that he and Jessica are siblings in one of the pages of Utopia, captures Christie and delivers him to the team. They interrogate him and are told that he intends to turn the entire humanity infertile for the next three generations with the vaccine for the virus. He believes that most of the world’s problems can be traced back to overpopulation.
The Raid at Christie Bio
Ian, Becky, Grant, and Stearns, along with the latest addition to the group, Alice (Farrah Mackenzie), go to Christie Bio, while Wilson stays back with Christie and Jessica leaves for the Home with Arby, who now goes by as John. Although initially daunted by the endless lines of crates of the vaccine, they manage to destroy most of them. Ian asks Becky to marry him, and she accepts. He then throws a Molotov cocktail, setting fire to the entire cache and leaving before the security finally gets into the warehouse. Stearns destroys all but the mother egg in the vaccine incubator and leaves Christie Bio with it. Later, Grant gets arrested as the police still suspect him of killing Christie’s protégé Cara and her family. Although Becky evades capture by the police, she gets in a car with Wilson and sees Christie and his son Thomas (Cory Michael Smith) in there, indicating that Wilson has betrayed his friends. As the ending of the season approaches, Ian and Alice remain free and continue to hide from both the authorities and agents of the Harvest
After she gets to the Home with Arby, she sees the yellow house from her childhood. The virus she had earlier contracted from the rabbit bite has started to take effect and she falls on her old bed. This is when Agent Katherine Milner (Sonja Sohn) appears. She tells Jessica that she is not part of Homeland Security as she has previously led her and her friends to believe, but she is the “Home”. The graphic novel depicts her as Jessica’s guardian angel. In reality, she is Mr. Rabbit, the villain of the story. When Jessica tries to attack her, she easily subdued. As Jessica loses consciousness, Milner begins talking about the work she has done with Jessica’s father. It is later revealed that the man in question, who is the creator of both graphic novels and long believed to be dead, is very much alive.
Read More: Will There be a Utopia Season 2?