For All Mankind (TV series)

For All Mankind is an American science fiction web television series created and written by Ronald D. Moore, Matt Wolpert and Ben Nedivi and produced for Apple TV+. The series dramatizes an alternate history depicting "what would have happened if the global space race had never ended" after the Soviet Union succeeds in the first manned Moon landing.[1]

For All Mankind
Genre
Created by
Starring
Composer(s)Jeff Russo
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes10 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Ronald D. Moore
  • Matt Wolpert
  • Ben Nedivi
  • Maril Davis
  • Seth Gordon
Production location(s)Los Angeles, California
Camera setupSingle-camera
Production company(s)
DistributorApple Inc.
Release
Original networkApple TV+
Original releaseNovember 1, 2019 (2019-11-01) –
present
External links
Website

For All Mankind premiered on November 1, 2019[2] and was renewed for a second season in October 2019.[3]

PremiseEdit

The first crewed mission to the Moon during the Space Race in the late 1960s was a global success for NASA and the United States. This drama poses the question: "What if the Space Race had never ended?"

In an alternate timeline, a Soviet cosmonaut, Alexei Leonov, becomes the first human to land on the Moon. This outcome devastates morale at NASA––but also catalyzes an American effort to catch up. With the Soviet Union emphasizing diversity by including a woman in subsequent landings, the US is forced to match pace, training women and minorities who were largely excluded from the initial decades of US space exploration.

Cast and charactersEdit

MainEdit

Historical figuresEdit

RecurringEdit

  • Tait Blum as Shane Baldwin (son of Ed and Karen Baldwin)
  • Arturo Del Puerto as Octavio Rosales
  • Noah Harpster as Bill Strausser (a Mission Controller)
  • Krys Marshall as Danielle Poole (an African American female astronaut)
  • Tracy Mulholland as Gloria Sedgewick (wife of Frank Sedgewick)
  • Dave Power as Astronaut Frank Sedgewick (Command Module Pilot of Apollo 15)
  • Mason Thames as Danny Stevens (older son of Gordo and Tracy Stevens)
  • Olivia Trujillo as Aleida Rosales
  • Sonya Walger as Molly Cobb (first American female astronaut to the Moon; the series producers selected the character's surname as "Cobb" to honor the real Mercury 13's Geraldyn M. Cobb who had died during the production of the first season of the series[4])
  • Meghan Leathers as Pam Horton (a barmaid, and Ellen's lover)
  • Wallace Langham as Harold Weisner, (NASA administrator in the Ted Kennedy administration; he replaced Thomas Paine as head of NASA)
  • Nate Corddry as Larry Wilson (a gay NASA engineer who poses as Ellen's boyfriend and later husband)
  • Leonora Pitts as Irene Hendricks (first woman Flight Director, replaced Gene Kranz on the White Team)
  • Dan Warner as General Arthur Weber, USAF (military liaison to NASA)
  • Lenny Jacobson as Wayne Cobb, Molly's former pre-med pot smoking artist husband

EpisodesEdit

No.Title [5]Directed byWritten by [6]Original release date
1"Red Moon"Seth GordonStory by : Ronald D. Moore and Matt Wolpert & Ben Nedivi
Teleplay by : Ronald D. Moore
November 1, 2019 (2019-11-01)
NASA is in crisis as Soviet cosmonaut Alexei Leonov becomes the first man on the Moon in 1969. Apollo 11 nearly crash lands on the Moon, but all the astronauts return safely.
2"He Built the Saturn V"Seth GordonMatt Wolpert & Ben NediviNovember 1, 2019 (2019-11-01)
Director Wernher von Braun opposes President Nixon's directive to build a military Moon base, starting the "Race for the Base". Nixon's men use von Braun's past involvement with the Nazi regime to remove him as Deputy Associate Administrator for Planning.
3"Nixon's Women"Allen CoulterNichole BeattieNovember 1, 2019 (2019-11-01)
Deke Slayton must recruit female astronauts after Russia lands a woman, Anastasia Belikova, on the Moon. An elimination process winnows the initial field of 20 "Astronaut Candidates" (informally "ASCAN") to just five, including Tracy Stevens (wife of Apollo 15's Gordo Stevens), two of the last of Mercury 13 named Molly Cobb and Patty Doyle, a black woman named Danielle Poole, who works as a NASA computer (what humans doing computations were called), and a woman named Ellen Waverly.
4"Prime Crew"Allen CoulterNaren ShankarNovember 8, 2019 (2019-11-08)
Deke Slayton makes a change to the Apollo 15 crew, replacing Gordo Stevens with Molly Cobb. Apollo 15 launches.
5"Into the Abyss"Sergio Mimica-GezzanDavid Weddle & Bradley ThompsonNovember 15, 2019 (2019-11-15)
The crew of Apollo 15 take a significant risk, changing their landing site to land near Shackleton Crater, a promising location for finding water that would be essential to any lunar colonization effort. Danielle's husband returns from fighting in Vietnam, and they have an argument with Gordo Stevens. Karen and Molly's husband Wayne reveal their fears to each other. The episode ends with the Jamestown landing two years later on 12 October 1973, to become NASA's first Lunar Base.
6"Home Again"Sergio Mimica-GezzanStephanie ShannonNovember 22, 2019 (2019-11-22)
On 24 of August of 1974 Jamestown Base has three people in it: Edward Baldwin, Gordo Stevens and Danielle Poole. The ERA is passed into law by President Ted Kennedy. Apollo 23 explodes on the launchpad, killing 11 members of the ground crew and Gene Kranz, the new Director of Johnson Space Center. 60 days later the USSR announces the establishment of a Soviet Moon base named Zvezda, located eight miles away from Jamestown Base. Margo notices Aleida working on her math homework. The FBI investigation on Apollo 23 starts to focus on Ellen's homosexuality. Margo blackmails NASA into making her a Flight Director. Richard Nixon is pardoned for the Watergate scandal. Gordo sees some unexplained red flashing lights near Jamestown Base.
7"Hi Bob"Meera MenonRonald D. MooreNovember 28, 2019 (2019-11-28)
NASA has replaced the component that caused the Apollo 23 accident but the Apollo 24 relief mission is continually delayed. This causes Gordo mental health problems. Ed eventually decides that Gordo should be evacuated back to Earth with Danielle, knowing Gordo would be prevented from ever flying again. Danielle deliberately breaks her arm, providing an excuse for Gordo to bring her back to Earth without revealing his psychological issues. Danielle's husband is unable to get a job. Ellen and Larry marry, to avoid a potential sex scandal. Ed's son is in trouble at school, and the police tell Karen that he has been in an accident.
8"Rupture"Meera MenonNichole BeattieDecember 6, 2019 (2019-12-06)
Back on Earth, Gordo is seeing a psychiatrist, without NASA's knowledge. Shane Baldwin's accident leaves him with a head injury from which he cannot recover. Karen decides that Ed should not know about Shane's accident. Ed is told to spy on the Russian base, and then discovers a Russian camera has been recording him working inside the crater. The Russians send Ed a condolences message, confusing him, and then Karen reveals that Shane is dead. Ed destroys the Russian camera. Aleida is given a scholarship for Maths and Physics.
9"Bent Bird"John DahlDavid Weddle & Bradley ThompsonDecember 13, 2019 (2019-12-13)
Karen struggles to cope with Shane's death. Apollo 24 has a technical failure while in orbit so they can't transit to Moon. Apollo 25 (with Dennis, Tracy, and Molly) launches quickly to fix Apollo 24, but just after the repairs are finished, when they run a self-test, Apollo 24's engines ignite prematurely and burn Harrison Liu to death while leaving Molly adrift. On Apollo 24 Ellen is knocked out and Deke's status is unknown as he was outside tethered to the spacecraft. Molly is rescued, but the accident results in a trajectory change which will cause Apollo 24 to miss the Moon and fly into deep space. Tensions escalate between the rival Soviet and American lunar explorers, and Ed sabotages the Russian moon rover while the Russians are at the USA's Moon mine. Octavio is uncovered as an illegal immigrant and is deported to Mexico. Later, without enough oxygen to return to his base, a Russian cosmonaut asks for help at Jamestown. Ed invites him inside, but then captures the Russian by partially depressurizing the airlock enough to make him unconscious.
10"A City Upon A Hill"John DahlMatt Wolpert & Ben NediviDecember 20, 2019 (2019-12-20)
Apollo 24's S-IVB burns to depletion sending the spacecraft way off course. Ed interrogates the Russian cosmonaut. NASA continues attempts to regain contact with Apollo 24. Ellen and Deke perform a burn using the service module engine to correct their course but their fuel supplies are depleted before the course correction is complete. Ed launches the Lunar Surface Access Module (LSAM) with help from the Russian cosmonaut to perform a rescue of Apollo 24 and capture the spacecraft into Lunar orbit. Unfortunately, the spacecraft is tumbling, making it nearly impossible for Ed to dock. Instead of docking, Ed decides to throw the fuel to Apollo 24. Ellen misses it at first but then lunges toward it, capturing it. Deke dies from internal bleeding as the rescue mission is completed. In a post-credits scene in 1983 Ed and Karen discuss a live coverage from the South Pacific Ocean showing a sea launch of an extremely large rocket similar to the Sea Dragon carrying a plutonium payload for expansion of the Jamestown colony.

ProductionEdit

DevelopmentEdit

According to Ronald D. Moore, the idea of the show came about during lunch with former NASA astronaut Garrett Reisman, when they discussed the possibility of an alternate history in which the Soviets reached the Moon before the Americans.[7] On December 15, 2017, it was announced that Apple had given the production a one-season series order. The series was created by Ronald D. Moore.[8] Moore, Matt Wolpert, and Ben Nedivi will jointly script and executive produce the drama. Maril Davis acted as Executive Producer. Production companies involved with the series are to include Sony Pictures Television and Tall Ship Productions.[1][9][10][11][12][13][14][15] On October 5, 2018, it was announced that the series had been officially titled For All Mankind.[16]

CastingEdit

In August 2018, it was announced that Joel Kinnaman, Michael Dorman, Sarah Jones, Shantel VanSanten, and Wrenn Schmidt had been cast in main roles and that Eric Ladin, Arturo Del Puerto, and Rebecca Wisocky would appear in a recurring capacity.[17][18][19] On October 5, 2018, it was reported that Jodi Balfour had been cast in a series regular role.[16]

FilmingEdit

Principal photography for the series commenced in August 2018 in Los Angeles, California.[20] In March 2019, The New York Times reported that filming had concluded.[21]

Critical responseEdit

The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 73% approval rating with an average rating of 6.91/10, based on 50 reviews. The website's critical consensus reads, "Though it shoots for the moon and falls somewhere in orbit, For All Mankind's impressive vision of history has the potential for real liftoff if it leans into the things that set it apart instead of settling for more of the same."[5] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned a score of 65 out of 100 based on 22 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[22] IMDb's user-rating of each episode increased across the season, with episode one rated 7.8 and episode 10 rated 9.2. [23]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Andreeva, Nellie (December 15, 2017). "Apple Orders Ronald D. Moore Space Drama Series". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  2. ^ Hipes, Patrick (September 10, 2019). "Here Are All The Apple TV+ Original Series Available At Launch". Deadline. Retrieved September 10, 2019.
  3. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (October 15, 2019). "'For All Mankind' Drama Renewed For Season 2 By Apple". Deadline. Retrieved November 6, 2019.
  4. ^ Carson, Erin (October 31, 2019). "Apple TV Plus launches For All Mankind on a meandering space race". CNET. Retrieved November 11, 2019. Molly Cobb is a nod to Geraldyn "Jerrie" Cobb, an accomplished pilot who was part of the Mercury 13 but was never allowed to become an astronaut.
  5. ^ a b "For All Mankind: Season 1 (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved December 25, 2019.
  6. ^ "For All Mankind – WGA Directory". Writers Guild of America West. Retrieved November 10, 2019.
  7. ^ Radish, Christina (July 15, 2019). "'For All Mankind' Showrunner Ronald D. Moore on His Alt History Space Race Apple+ Series". Collider.
  8. ^ "'For All Mankind' to launch alternate space race on Apple TV+". collectSPACE. October 28, 2019. Retrieved November 18, 2019.
  9. ^ Roots, Kimberly (December 15, 2017). "Outlander Boss Ronald D. Moore's Space Drama Gets Apple Series Order". TVLine. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  10. ^ Barsanti, Sam (December 17, 2017). "Battlestar Galactica's Ronald D. Moore is developing a new space drama for Apple". The A.V. Club. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  11. ^ Marnell, Blair (December 15, 2017). "STAR TREK and BATTLESTAR GALACTICA's Ronald D. Moore is Writing a New Space Drama | Nerdist". Nerdist Industries. Archived from the original on February 18, 2018. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  12. ^ Morris, David Z. (December 16, 2017). "Apple Orders New Series from Battlestar Galactica Mastermind". Fortune. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  13. ^ Oller, Jacob (December 15, 2017). "Battlestar Galactica's Ronald D. Moore returns to space with new Apple TV series". Syfy Wire. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  14. ^ Otterson, Joe (December 15, 2017). "Apple Gives Straight-to-Series Order to Drama From 'Outlander' Showrunner". Variety. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  15. ^ O'Connell, Michael (December 15, 2017). "Apple Orders Space Drama From Ronald D. Moore". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  16. ^ a b Petski, Denise (October 5, 2018). "Jodi Balfour Cast In Ron Moore's Apple Space Drama 'For All Mankind'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved October 5, 2018.
  17. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (August 14, 2018). "Joel Kinnaman, Sarah Jones & Michael Dorman To Star In Ron Moore's Apple Space Series". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 14, 2018.
  18. ^ Porter, Rick (August 30, 2018). "Ron Moore's Apple Space Drama Adds Shantel VanSanten, Wrenn Schmidt (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 30, 2018.
  19. ^ Petski, Denise (August 30, 2018). "Eric Ladin, Arturo Del Puerto & Rebecca Wisocky To Recur In Ron Moore's Apple Space Series". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 30, 2018.
  20. ^ "Filming in August: Ronald D. Moore to Produce Upcoming Series 'For All Mankind (aka NASA)' in Los Angeles, CA". Production List | Film & Television Industry Alliance. August 13, 2018. Archived from the original on December 2, 2018. Retrieved December 2, 2018.
  21. ^ Koblin, John (March 17, 2019). "Apple's Big Spending Plan to Challenge Netflix Takes Shape". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved March 24, 2019.
  22. ^ "For All Mankind: Season 1". Metacritic. Retrieved December 25, 2019.
  23. ^ For All Mankind (TV Series 2019– ) - IMDb, retrieved 2020-01-05

External linksEdit