Written by Melissa Henson | Published August 3, 2021
Surely one of the most iconic shows in TV history is “Lost in Space.” Even those who never watched the 1965 original have probably heard the catch phrase, “Danger, Will Robinson!”
Like the original CBS series, Netflix’s new “Lost in Space” is about a family stranded in space, a series of adventures based around young Will Robinson who forms a special relationship with a robot, and a devious doctor. The similarities end there. The new “Lost in Space” has vastly improved upon the original, from the high-budget graphics and special effects, to the sophisticated plotlines, and messaging.
The Earth is threatened (in part because of a mysterious asteroid that crashed on Earth) and on the verge of collapse, and an attempt is made to create a new Earth colony in the distant Alpha Centauri solar system. Colonists are selected on the basis of merit to populate this new colony. Maureen Robinson, an engineer, has been preparing her children Judy, Penny, and Will to qualify for the journey and the difficult life they will face as some of the first settlers on this new planet. When the series begins, she is estranged from her Navy Seal husband John, and in the process of divorce.
A number of successful trips have been made with the transport ship RESOLUTE, taking colonists to Alpha Centauri. On the latest voyage, the RESOLUTE is attacked by an alien space craft whose sophisticated robots board the RESOLUTE and wreak havoc. Colonists flee in their various Jupiter space crafts (each one acts as a single family dwelling) attached to the RESOLUTE; including the Robinsons, who land on an Earth-like planet where young Will rescues one of the robots from the attacking Alien Space Ship and forms a bond with it. The grateful robot guards and protects Will and the rest of the Robinson family. The Robinsons also rescue Dr. Smith, who alternately works to help with Robinsons (when it is in her own best interest to do so), or to undermine them, if it is to her advantage.
In the course of their adventures, they face peril and contend with issues of loyalty and trust, empathy and forgiveness, family, character, purpose, and duty that are not often seriously addressed in modern television shows, and the issues they confront and resolve provide life-lessons that that set it apart from most series targeted to this age group.
This PG-rated series is available on Netflix’s kids profile, and is well suited to viewers ages 12 and up; but the production values make it a program even adult viewers will enjoy. There are scenes of intense action, violence and peril – but nothing graphic or gratuitous. There is no nudity or sexual content. The only problem with the series – and the only thing that marred my family’s total enjoyment of it -- is the somewhat frequent profanity, which includes damn, bitch, bastard, ass, hell, pissed, sh*t and one partial f-word. This issue would be easily resolved with the use of content filters through a service like Vid Angel, or by simply not including that language in the first place.