Binge Watch List: Lost in Space Is The Feel-Good Show That Proves Humans Aren't Bonkers
Netflix’s Lost in Space season two was released on Christmas Eve about a month ago, and if you haven’t binged on it yet, you might want to put it on your watch list. Netflix’s adaptation of the sci-fi classic, itself an adaptation of Swiss Family Robinson, is one of the best family shows on the streaming platform. Here are five reasons why you should binge on this series that might’ve flown under your radar:
1| Lost in Space is about family.
Lost in Space follows the adventures of the Robinsons, a spacefaring family consisting of father John, a soldier; mother Maureen, a scientist; eldest child Judy, an overachieving young doctor; middle child Penny, a free-spirited writer; and young Will, a courageous little boy.
Unlike some shows that use family dysfunction as plot devices, the Robinsons are a pretty well-adjusted family whose love and trust for one another is what drives the story forward. Sure, there’s occasional friction, sibling rivalries, and marital disagreements, but there are few families as solid as the Robinsons and it’s fun to watch.
This makes Lost in Space such an ideal show to binge on as a family. The Robinsons are relatable, and even though the setting is the far reaches of space, they have a wonderful dynamic that’s familiar and even ideal.
2| They overcome challenges together.
Space is a dangerous place. The Robinsons find themselves in an unknown part of the galaxy and they’re put through the wringer almost every single minute. From dealing with hostile alien environments to fighting off alien robots, the family figures out a way to solve problems together. Even though each member of the family is competent and an expert in several fields, they value teamwork and don’t hesitate to ask for help when dealing with things they can’t handle.
Too many television shows capitalize on the fact that people don’t communicate. Miscommunication is one of the main plot drivers for comedy and even drama, where characters hide their true intentions or keep their problems to themselves. The Robinsons have their share of secrets, but unlike other television shows, it’s never what drives the conflict. The Robinsons know when they’re in over their heads and they ask for help. Nobody plays the hero for the sake of being the hero. The Robinsons are a team, and they win as a team.
3| It’s about good parenting.
John Robinson isn’t Judy’s biological dad, but in one emotionally charged episode, their relationship is explored and we get to see how being a parent isn’t just about being related by blood. Parenting is all about being there for your children and Maureen and John are definitely there, from big moments like solving how to get off a dangerous planet to small ones like teaching Will how to drive.
Maureen and John are authoritative, strict, but never overbearing or disregard their children’s individual freedoms. Their children respect them, and even when they sometimes go against their parents’ wishes, they know they have to own up and face the consequences. Maureen and John’s concern for their children is always their priority, and one important part of the series is that it makes it clear that letting go of your children is part of raising them.
4| They make everyone around them better.
The best thing about this series is that the Robinsons beat their enemies by making them better versions of themselves. Because they rely on teamwork and other people to solve problems, the Robinsons lift everyone around them by bringing out their best. Lost In Space isn’t short on action or thrills but the Robinsons rarely resort to violence, even when it seems like the obvious solution. John gets to throw his fists, but for the most part, this family solves everything through dialogue and peace.
Will Robinson’s empathy is his most important trait followed by his courage, and it’s these traits that prove to be useful against impending doom. The Robinsons turn enemies into friends, or at least make them pause long enough to make their escape. As Penny tells Will, turning one enemy good might be a fluke, but two might be the start of something big. The way the Robinsons forge peace isn’t something you see on television often, not even in Star Trek.
5| The Robinsons represent the best of humanity.
If the human race were to send only one family out into space, it can’t go wrong with the Robinsons. Aside from their expertise in their respective fields, the Robinsons have the qualities of truly good human beings. They have the right values augmented by a great skill set, and that makes them ideal representatives of the species. If there’s any family that should make first contact with an alien race, it’s the one that wants what’s best for everyone, including the enemy.
Because the world we live in is surreally governed by the worst examples of the human race, we need more shows that show us at our best, with characters who display heroism in achievable, human ways. Lost in Space is a series that shows how we can solve problems with ingenuity, teamwork, and compassion. It values family and friendship without cheapening them or using them for melodrama.
Netflix’s Lost In Space is an underrated gem in the glut of streaming shows. Its high production values make each episode feel like an epic movie, but what really makes the show stand out are its characters. Even Parker Posey’s Dr. Smith (gender bent from the original series) is one of the most hateable characters on television but is complex and, ultimately, very human. The Robinsons show that making the right choices isn’t hard, and even if it’s just fiction, it’s cathartic and inspiring. There are plenty of shows that are grim and show the worst facets of humanity, so having an adventure drama like Lost in Space is a breath of fresh air. If you’re looking for a show to watch with the entire family, add it to the top of your binge list.