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Amazon Prime’s “Utopia”: Evil’s pursuit of perfection

Written By | Sep 30, 2020

Jessica Hyde (Sasha Lane) and her followers try to decipher the comic’s code.

WASHINGTON. Cosplaying Comic-Con attendees needn’t be so self-conscious. Someday, they might actually be called upon to save the world. At least that’s the plot to Amazon Prime’s new original series “Utopia.”

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Comic book convention attendees. “Utopia” screen capture.

The story centers around a group of nerdy comic book enthusiasts anxious to get their hands on the follow-up graphic novel to, you guessed it, “Dystopia.”  The sequel, though, was never published. Instead, Utopia’s original panels (magnificently illustrated by Brazilian artist João Ruas) are discovered by a pair of clueless millennials while cleaning the home of a deceased relative and extreme hoarder.

Amazon, Prime, Utopia, Comic Book

“Utopia” illustrations by Brazilian artist João Ruas. “Utopia” screen capture.

Realizing what they have, the pair announce the discovery over social media before attending a comic book convention and offering the unpublished work to the highest bidder. But it turns out the book is more than an imaginative instrument of mindless escapism.

Instead, this codex reveals a sinister plot to destroy much of humanity by use of a bioengineered pandemic. Its illustrations are laced with complex symbols containing clues of things – very bad things – to come.

The convention’s celebratory vibe soon dissipates when cold-blooded killers come to collect the comic book. And their relentless pursuit displays a life-long dedication to serving a specific “purpose” in life. One in service to the twisted designs of a fanatical father figure with a dream to save our world.

Jessica Jones, Marvel’s flawed comic book superhero

It’s at this point in most reviews that the discussion turns to the character Jessica Hyde (Sasha Lane) and her reluctant band of adventurers. Innocents on a heroic quest to save humanity.

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Jessica Hyde. “Utopia” screen capture.

They are certainly entertaining, but not as interesting as the tale’s evil genius, Dr. Kevin Christie (John Cusack). His environmental musings are as apocalyptic as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Both embody a twisted self-hatred masquerading as global altruism.

For example, Christie says:

“Global warming. Mass extinctions. Food, water shortages. All these problems can be boiled down to one thing: over population… If we don’t do something now, right now, in a decade our world will experience extraordinary privations. A war of all against all.”

When you put it that way, there is nothing so precious it can’t be annihilated. Especially humans, who are…

“… a species that is replicated like a contagion across the planet, killing all other species in its wake. Except things that are cute, like puppies or koalas… I love this planet. So, I decided to take care of the problem.”

Christie is fond of asking those he encounters,

“Tell me this, what have you done today to earn your place in this crowded world?”
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Dr. Kevin Christie (John Cusack) is out to save the world. “Utopia” screen capture.

And you’d better have a convincing answer to that question. Dr. Christie doesn’t believe our over-populated planet has space to accommodate those he considers rudderless and devoid of purpose.

He also asks, mostly of himself,

“How much evil do you have to do to do good?”

An excellent question for those do-gooders who never stop and consider the unintended consequences that follow their fanatical actions in pursuit of utopia.

“Utopia” is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.

Amazon, Prime, Utopia, Comic Book

Illustration from the comic book “Utopia.” Amazon Prime screen capture.


Top Image: Jessica Hyde (Sasha Lane) and her followers try to decipher the comic’s code. “Utopia” screen capture.

Steven M. Lopez

Steven M. Lopez

Originally from Los Angeles, Steven M. Lopez has been in the news business for more than thirty years. He made his way around the country: Arizona, the Bay Area and now resides in South Florida.