Some premises are cursed by their title. Sadly, there will probably never be a Star Wars movie that doesn’t involve fighting just as A Series of Unfortunate Events won’t have an episode that turns into a pony party. Lost In Space is the same way: just when you think the Robinson family (and Don) are about to rejoin civilization, they get lost all over again. Yes, there are spoilers ahead for the last episode of the new Lost In Space on Netflix, but broadly speaking, the title itself is a spoiler.
On Friday, Netflix released all ten episodes of Lost In Space. The new show splits the difference between honoring themes and situations from the classic Sixties show, while also changing the Robot significantly, and tackling the overall premise with realism and survivalist grit. Plus, the standout of the new show is the new Dr. Smith, played deliciously and diabolically by Parker Posey. The show has some lingering mysteries, too, including a weird government conspiracy suggesting that knowledge of these alien robots was something people on Earth knew about ahead of time. The final moments of the last episode find the Robinson family’s spaceship — the Jupiter2 — being hijacked by alien technology and zapped to an unknown star system. Basically, there’s plenty here for a second season. But, should there be?
Officially, Netflix has not confirmed if there will be a second season of the show, but for old and new fans alike the tease of the trippy binary star system at the very end seems to be enough to warrant more adventures from the Robinsons. Plus, this set-up mirrors the original series, too. In the first season, the Robinsons couldn’t fly around through space much, but in the second season, they could. Think of it this way: season 1 is “lost on a planet, in space,” and season 2 is “lost in space, like, for real this time.” By cutting the Robinsons off from EVERYONE they know, including everyone on the Resolute, the stakes could feel a little higher.
The other compelling reason to hope for a season 2 of Lost In Space is more philosophical: it’s upbeat and family friendly. This may sound insane, but despite the preponderance of sci-fi fantasy shows and films these days, they’re all mostly aimed at adults. Lost In Space is refreshing because it’s upbeat and takes the situations of being stranded in space realistically, but the action and themes aren’t so hardcore that a ten-year-old couldn’t love it.
A lot of fans of genre fiction talk a big game about the triumph of more dark and serious science fiction and fantasy. But, the only problem with that stuff is that it doesn’t cultivate the next generation of sci-fi and fantasy fans. Game of Thrones is fine, but most people would agree an 8-year-old isn’t having their imagination fired by it. Same with Jessica Jones or Daredevil or Star Trek: Discovery. These shows are good for teens and adults, but what about the younger kids?
Lost In Space isn’t the edgiest most original sci-fi show to come along in the past few years. But it does balance serious action, cool robots, speculative space science and adventure without needing to traumatize the audience with endless scenes of violence or torture. In other words, it’s wholesome fun. So, for that reason, let’s hope the Robinson family gets a shot at being lost even more if they come back for a second season.