Review: ‘Sense8’ is an emotional masterpiece

The second season of the confusing yet riveting Netflix original series “Sense8” was finally released on May 5 after much anticipation. As an avid fan myself, I pulled an all-nighter and watched every single episode, unable to stop myself until the finale — which was mind-blowing. The show’s premise is extremely confusing, but also enthralling enough to keep you glued to your screen.

For those unfamiliar with the show, it revolves around eight adults — known as Sensates — that live dispersed throughout the world who have a metaphysical connection. This allows them to communicate, visit and share skills with each other without their physical body moving from the comfort of their own home. The connection is instantaneous, no matter what they’re doing or where they are. There are times where they have to risk the (hilarious) awkward moment in the presence of their oblivious family by talking aloud to the other Sensates that no one else can see. The eight form one of thousands of such “clusters” with whom they try to communicate for more information. The main threat to their existence is the Biological Preservation Organisation and the evil Mr. Whispers. Whispers wants to use these Sensates and manipulate their abilities. A main plot point of the series is the Sensates evading Whispers’ attempts to capture them.

The show was meant to be science fiction, but I believe it goes beyond that. It’s complicated premise opens the door for the sister creators, Lana and Lilly Wachowski, to get away with almost no plot. But trust me, the cinematography is honestly more than enough to grab your attention and keep you hooked. The cast and crew traveled to unique locations around the world to shoot the series and piece them together at the end. Most of the cast are from the countries their characters resides in.

For me, the show is about celebrating connection and diversity. The first season focused on allowing these eight strangers to find themselves as a whole — to become friends and lovers. They are willing to sacrifice their own lives to celebrate, grow and stay together. Overall they resemble a really cool support system and the series basically brings the phrase, “strength in numbers” to life.

This season shows the power they have as one. We see the characters find new ways to work with each other’s skills. The best moments in the show this season are when all eight gather together. These scenes are filled with action and drama and become pivotal occurrences in the series. They become even more accomplished when around their support system and always manage to work as a team. I love seeing the Sensates work together in perfect harmony. Their distinctive skills fit together like puzzle pieces, while their past experiences work together to push them closer as a group.

Indian chemist Kala (Tina Desai) finds that her skills help Chicago cop Will (Brian J. Smith) and his Icelandic girlfriend — also in the cluster — Riley (Tuppence Middleton). Spanish actor Lito (Miguel Angel Silvestre) finds that his bartending skills help Korean Sun (Doona Bae). Kenyan bus-driver Capheus (Toby Onwumere) finds himself running for president. American hacker Nomi (Jamie Clayton) finds a way to help everyone with her incredible skills, while German safecracker Wolfgang (Max Riemelt) attempts to get more information for the cluster to free themselves from Whispers.

A bonus in this season is that we gain more insight into the lives of each Sensate as an individual rather than just a part of the cluster. We even get to see different sides of each of them. More about Sun’s past gets revealed as she meets an old acquaintance and moves from home to home. Capheus’ political ambitions lead to an unexpected family history. Kala’s science knowledge even helps her blow up a car in Korea … from India. Wolfgang forms a not-so-great alliance that stabs him in the back. The family aspect of every Sensate becomes important in this season. Each individual story is pieced together to form its own show while the overarching theme remains evading Whispers and bringing down BPO.

The dialogue is well-written and leaves you hungry for more, yet there never seems to be enough information. Because the idea of a Sensate is so complicated, we’re often questioning the extent of their abilities. These boundaries are tested in this season while Wolfgang, Capheus, Will and Riley meet other Sensates to get answers. With the answer to one question, audiences are often left with hundreds more.

If you’re a fan of “The Matrix,” or emotional connections that surpass physical barriers, you’ll love “Sense8” even more: grab your popcorn and start watching! Everything about this show screams the perfect binge-worthy mix of science fiction and love. Sadly, the season three release date is nowhere in sight

ILLUSTRATION BY ALEXX ELDER

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