Have you ever thought what the world would be like if everyone only had 34 days left to live, because a comet was hurtling towards Earth? For those of us who have not considered this situation, Sky 1’s new transatlantic comedy-drama You, Me and the Apocalypse has the answer to this question. The ten-part series, created and edited by Iain Hollands, follows a select group of individuals from across the globe who are forced to survive together as the world comes to an eventful end. After watching the action-packed teaser trailer (ironically accompanied by Johnny Nash’s signature smash I can See Clearly Now), it seems as though it would be foolish not to see at least the first episode.
In the opening scene, we are introduced to the main protagonist of the show, less than joyful Jamie Winton (played by Matthew Baynton), who tells the audience of the Earth’s impending doom from a bunker underneath Slough. In the same room are people from around the world who all seem to have no connection to each other whatsoever, in particular a nervous nun. At this point it is difficult to see where this story is going, and how these characters have ended up in the same place trying to survive the impending end of the world.
We are taken back 34 days prior to this event where we see prim and proper Jamie preparing for a seemingly ordinary day at his local bank and learn it is his birthday. More importantly, he is making one of over 2,000 videos for his wife who has been missing for seven years, so he believes he will find her one day. However, this is quickly dashed over by his flamboyant and loving house mate who encourages him to get a life and relevantly states ‘embrace the chaos.’ The show suggests that somehow those words of wisdom will be relevant for Jamie over the coming episodes after being taken into questioning by the police for being accused of cyber terrorism. The most significant moment comes at the end of the episode when Jamie learns he is adopted and the police show a picture of his wife with his unknown twin, so we will see how the search for the love of his life intensifies now he knows she still exists.
Crossing over to New Mexico, the innocent librarian Rhonda McNeil (Jenna Fisher) is newly admitted into prison with an icy reception from her fellow inmates. This clever hint to Orange is The New Black was highly appreciated. We learn Rhonda is looking at five years in jail for selflessly covering for her son, who hacked the National Security Agency. Out of all the characters, Rhonda’s story line grabs your attention the least, but as the drama develops, it may be interesting to see how she tries to reunite with her family in this race against time, following the jailbreak performed by Jamie’s mystery twin.
The plot switches again to Limbria, Italy, where Sister Celine Leonti (Gaia Schodellero) travel to the Vatican in hope of working for the Devil’s Advocate’s office. This scene was the highlight of the episode, because we are presented with the crude and chain-smoking Father Jude who is tasked with doing background checks on possible saints. Played by Rob Lowe, his character is the most entertaining and complex to watch. Despite the earlier comments, he still remains a deeply moral man who needs Celine’s help, because he believes ‘the world needs sceptics more than ever’ to ensure the population is not fooled by swindlers during the impending apocalypse.
How will they attempt to keep the world together when it is falling apart? And just how will all of the very different characters come to be together in that bunker underneath Slough? We’ll have to tune in and see!