Animated series about space or things from outer space are hot right now and coming from every which way largely thanks to the popularity of Rick and Morty. Every original network knows this, so naturally, they wanna get “one” too. Youtube Red did it, TBS did it, and possibly too late Facebook Watch did it. After a tumultuous year which saw the one time largest social network become subject to scrutiny on a variety of issues, Facebook Watch finally gets it’s shit together and now we’re starting to see the fruits. In the realm of original animation, Facebook Watch turns to an animation company that is finally starting to make strides in becoming an original producer that still yearns for that “big break” whether it’d be with an original film or made for TV series. As a result, Human Kind Of could become the start of a relationship that may have time to flourish just a tad before Facebook is shoved in the graveyard with other social nets like MySpace and Friendster. It’s risky, but they say if you build it, “they will come”.
The premise of Human Kind Of revolves around a teenage girl just coming into her own as both a woman and, as luck would have it, a half an alien. She’s got it all folks, raging hormones, fascination with boys, and gills, and the start of the series does a solid job of introducing us to the show’s star “Judy Reilly” (voiced by Michelle Trachtenberg). Judy’s mother is responsible for being the voice of the producers of Human Kind Of, in that she’s explaining to us the audience why Judy is half alien and in this case, it’s relatively simple, and pretty much the premise for Guardians of the Galaxy. While at first, Judy is unsure about her powers, she soon is able to use her newfound powers against bullies thus making her a sort of a high school superhero. Her best friend, Cory (“Kate Berlant”), loves the fact that Judy has powers and wants to do what every typical best friend does in this situation…profit.
A lot of the underlying premises of Human Kind Of have really been done before. As mentioned, the parallels with Guardians of the Galaxy are there and Netflix series Big Mouth does a more original and funnier take on a lot of the material surrounding the “coming of age” tagline that everyone with a teenage actor uses nowadays. Fortunately, the acting department doesn’t let off and really helps the different characters shine through. Trachtenberg and Berlant are excellent and make the show watching all by itself. I’m also already invested in the arc-infused plot that showcases Judy’s willingness to find out who she is, so I plan to see this thing the whole way through. I just hope we can get into some more original concepts over the course of the next 18 episodes.