Fallout Is The Sci-Fi Series To Please Faithful Fans And Newcomers

By Nikola Pajtic | Updated

Even if you are not a vault dweller familiar with the Fallout video game series, the title might ring a bell. This popular franchise, known for its post-apocalyptic twist on an alternate 1950s, has blasted its way onto the small screen promising an adventure in a ravaged wasteland and a deep, dark secret of the Vaults, humanity’s last hope for survival before the nuclear bombs. 

Retro Future Aesthetic Of The 22nd Century

Graham Wagner and Geneva Robertson-Dworet created Fallout for Amazon Prime Video with a few other notable names behind the camera, including Jonathan Nolan, Lisa Joy, who worked on the Westworld series, and Todd Howard, who directed several Fallout games.  

Fallout captures the retrofuturistic style of the games, as 1950s aesthetics clash with the irradiated reality of the 22nd century as we are taken more than 200 years into the future. It is a wild, wild wasteland on the surface. 

The Post-Apocalypse Never Looked So Good

The Wasteland looks exactly like it should in a sci-fi drama like this. It has pools of toxic water, radiation zones, and the byproducts of radiation exposure rule this damaged earth. Viewers are quickly introduced to several different mutated monsters, humans, paramilitary organizations, factions, and individuals who fight for their place in the harsh, irradiated reality. 

Walton Goggins Steals Another Show

walton goggins

One man steals the show. Walter Goggins plays Ghoul, the radiotrophic remains of what once was TV cowboy Cooper Howard. Typical ghouls in the world of Fallout are mindless enemies, but somehow, Ghoul retains his old charms and morals, which still flicker beneath the surface. 

Ghouls’ cunning mind, dark humor, and surprising acts of kindness kept me interested in Fallout as his troubled past slowly weaved into the narrative. This bounty hunter with a lasso and a mission is a star of the show so far, and we can thank the creators for adding manners to ghouls. 

Delightful Vault Dweller Hero

On the opposite side of the cunning spectrum is Lucy MacLean, portrayed by Ella Purnell. Lucy is a naive Vault dweller raised on the norms of 1950s America. Incorporating an optimistic and ‘can-do’ attitude, Lucy is the epitome of the idealized past. However, before the pilot episode ends, a devastating event forces Lucy to leave the Vault and search the Wasteland for her missing father. This is a nod to the Fallout 3 game plot in which the protagonist goes off into the Wasteland in search of their father.

This makes Lucy Fallout’s main protagonist by proxy. Despite her naivety, Lucy isn’t helpless. A trained fighter, she knows her way in battles against monsters and fractions. Her strong sense of right and wrong will keep you entertained as she exclaims, “okie dokie,” with wide-open eyes facing the next calamity. 

The Brotherhood Of Steel

Another character that stands out is Maximus, a squire in the Brotherhood of Steel, one of the many factions fighting for control of the Wasteland. Portrayed by Aaron Moten, he is somewhere in the middle of the two contrasting characters. Throughout eight episodes, Maximus forms a reluctant trust with Lucy as their paths cross and they continue together. 

The Story Plays Out Like One Of The Games

Fallout as a TV series plays out as one big questline in a video game, and these three characters intertwine. Every one of them has its abilities, perks, and traits and is on the same mission. Of course, they all have unique side quests, but eventually, their stories will intertwine, ending in a big setup for season two. 

Fallout is not just about the Wasteland but also about deep, dark mysteries that are being uncovered in the Vaults across the USA. Lucy’s brother, Norm, is there to explore sinister truths that are responsible for the reality they are living in in the 2200s. 

Easter Eggs For Video Game Fans

What I have found extremely likable about Fallout is that this isn’t an adaptation of a single video game and its narrative. Instead, the people behind the show used the Fallout universe and its premise to tell a different story while capturing the essence of the video games. This has worked out to everyone’s benefit, from the writers able to explore the world to the fans who don’t know what to expect.

If you are a fan of video games, you will certainly cherish seeing a myriad of Vault Boy posters across the Wasteland and its brutality, all faithfully recreated in stunning detail. It is a love letter to the franchise as it doesn’t shy away from showing all the monsters lurking on the surface, both inhumane and humane. 

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Even if you are not familiar with the franchise, Fallout won’t feel overwhelming as backstory and connections are carefully integrated. This is why it won’t feel empty or tiring for you, as you will eagerly await the explanation behind Cooper Howard’s character and how the politics and economy failed the common man. 

If you can accept the quirky charm of Fallout, you will enjoy the series for what it is: a fantastic sci-fi mystery drama that will keep you guessing until the very last frame.