One of the best science fiction shows on television just got renewed for a second season. Apple TV+ has officially announced another season of Severance, the dystopian office science fiction thriller (the show has a lot of layers, okay?) starring Adam Scott. While it may not have the viewing numbers of an Amazon Prime Video show or be quite as comforting as your Mandalorians or Bobas Fett, the Dan Erickson-created show has received enormous critical acclaim. Apparently, it is enough for Apple to have enough faith to think the chilly, alternately comedic and creepy (and sometimes creepily comedic) series can make it for at least another season of episodes. Given that Adam Scott fans are about to get another season of the cult catering comedy Party Down, it’s a good time to be an appreciator of the jerk brother from Stepbrothers.
The premise of Severance is relatively simple: what if instead of going to work and slogging through the day, you could simply become another person entirely? In this show, Adam Scott’s character Mark Scout has a chip implanted into his brain by their increasingly sinister employer Lumon Industries (and considering we’re starting from “chip implanted into brain,” that’s a lot of sinister) which causes him to essentially separate his mind into two independent personalities. One Adam Scott lives outside of the office, lives in bleak and too spacious corporate housing, and drinks too much. The other Adam Scott exists solely inside the office, has no real idea what his job on a vaguely retro-looking computer entails, and has recently been promoted to head of his department after the sudden disappearance of the previous head. Suffice to say, things get weirder. There are rumors of violent, clannish warfare against other departments, a bizarre, quasi-religious veneration of the corporate founder, and Christopher Walken. It’s pretty great.
Severance also has an enormous amount of talent behind it in addition to Adam Scott. The show was selected off the 2016 Bloodlist (an annual list of the best-unproduced horror screenplays) and is creator Dan Erickson’s first major work. It is directed by Ben Stiller and Aoife McArdle; Stiller is also an executive producer on the show and it is backed by his Red Hour Productions company. Aside from Adam Scott and Christopher Walken (as the genial head of Lumon’s art department), Severance stars John Turturro as a corporate rules-obsessed coworker, Zach Cherry as a more profane and less-rule obsessed coworker, and Britt Lower as the newest member of their team.
Much of the plot of the first season of Severance has been Adam Scott’s Mark Scout/Mark S. slowly awakening to the desire to get out of Lumon headquarters and his superior Patricia Arquette’s clandestine observance of him both in and out of the workplace. The season is set to end this Friday, April 8, which may leave a lot open to see what happens in the world of Severance. But since we’ve been gifted a second season in the future, give yourself a gift and watch the first season while you can.