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'Upload is The Good Place meets Black Mirror dark comedy that I binged in one sitting.'

For many of us, the last few weekends have been spent gathering with friends and family over video calls.

From virtual backgrounds to touched up faces, it’s been an interesting adjustment, to say the least.

But much like we’re currently using apps like Zoom and FaceTime to keep in touch with our loved ones around the world, what would it be like to keep in touch with those friends and family members who are no longer with us? What if you could interact with those who have died via phone calls and virtual reality?

That’s the question posed in new Amazon Prime comedy sci-fi series, Upload.

Watch the trailer for Amazon Prime’s Upload below. Post continues after video.

The show, which has been described as a mix of The Good Place, The Office, and Black Mirror, was created by Greg Daniels – the mastermind behind The Office and the co-creator of Parks and Recreation.

Upload follows the story of 27-year-old software developer Nathan Brown (Robbie Amell), who is injured in a self-driving car accident.

Once arriving at the hospital alongside his girlfriend, Ingrid Kannerman (Allegra Edwards), Nathan must make a decision – he can either opt for surgery and risk dying, or he can upload his consciousness into one of the many different types of afterlives available.

Fearing that he may lose his life entirely, Nathan chooses the latter, and his consciousness is uploaded to his new digital community.

Within the series, which is set in the year 2033, the digital afterlife is not just possible, it’s also an entirely profitable industry.

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In this universe, being “uploaded” isn’t exactly a privilege that is extended to all humans.

Instead, it’s a system which largely relies on wealth and privilege… even after death.

Luckily, thanks to Ingrid’s incredibly rich family, Nathan ends up in one of the more luxurious afterlife destinations – Lakeview, which is largely based on the grand Victorian hotels and landscapes of Canada.

upload amazon prime
Nathan Brown (Robbie Amell) and Nora Antony (Andy Allo) in Upload. Image: Amazon Prime.

Despite its appearance, however, Lakeview is less than perfect.

You see, in Upload, the quality of your time in the afterlife is determined by how much money your family has in the bank.

And as Nathan is on his girlfriend Ingrid's data account, she essentially has control over any decisions – or purchases – he makes at Lakeview.

Those digitally existing in the afterlife aren't free from capitalism, either. In this particular afterlife destination, uploads face constant pop-up ads and even in-app purchases.

Much like Black Mirror's episode 'San Junipero', residents in the afterlife can be visited by family and friends as well. In one of the earlier episodes in the series, Nathan even attends his own funeral.

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But despite his interactions with the outside world and with other 'uploads', living in Lakeview can be a lonely existence.

Along the way, Nathan forms a complicated connection with Nora Antony (Andy Allo), his 'Angel', who acts as a customer service representative in Lakeview.

Although the purpose of Angels is generally to provide tech support, Nathan and Nora, who is based in New York City, form a deeper connection.

Listen to the latest episode of Mamamia's daily entertainment podcast, The Spill, below. Post continues after podcast.

While the premise of the show sounds similar to Netflix's The Good Place, which was actually created by Greg Daniels' Parks and Recreation co-creator Michael Schur, Upload has a much darker side.

One central theme of the series is the questions surrounding Nathan's death, which leads to an unravelling 'whodunnit' mystery.

There's also, of course, the more dystopian themes of loss of privacy and capitalism, which are sprinkled throughout the series.

One of the strengths of the series undoubtedly lies in the central characters of Nathan, Nora and Ingrid.

The lead characters, played by Amell, Allo, and Edwards, are well fleshed out, with Nathan and Nora quickly becoming characters to really root for.

Over 10 episodes at just 25 minutes each, Upload tells a unique type of afterlife story compared to the ones we're used to seeing on our screens.

Rather than showing a hyper-idealised version of the afterlife, Upload creates a universe that's exhilarating and often terrifyingly believable – but also full of bucket loads of humour and heart.

And it's these elements that make it so damn watchable – and even downright addictive.

Upload is available to watch on Amazon Prime now.

Feature Image: Amazon Prime.


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