Amazon has released a red band trailer for their new show Utopia showing off the bloody mayhem to come. A remake of the 2013 British series of the same name, the series is adapted by Gone Girl and Sharp Objects scribe Gillian Flynn. The series was originally set up at HBO with David Fincher attached to direct. After a financial dispute, the show moved to Amazon Prime and was ordered to series with nine episodes. The first Utopia trailer premiered in August during Comic-Con @ Home, giving viewers a tamer glimpse into the series.
Utopia stars Sasha Lane in only her second major role since earning critical acclaim in Andrea Arnold‘s American Honey. She is joined by Rainn Wilson, John Cusack, and Dan Byrd. The series follows a group of misfits as they discover an underground comic book that predicts future world changing events. They are subsequently tasked with saving the world as they are tailed by a mysterious corporation that aims to steal the graphic novel from them. The British original was known for its ultraviolent action and the Amazon series looks to be following suit.
In a red band trailer shared by Amazon Prime Video, viewers get their first glimpse of Lane‘s Jessica Hyde in action as she defends her group of friends from those that are after the graphic novel. The trailer opens with Jessica Hyde‘s brutal takedown of two of those cronies as she wields a knife against two gun-toting, redheaded twins. Bloody mayhem ensues and the group’s getaway car is spattered in blood spray. The rest of the trailer highlights the ragtag team of characters that join Jessica Hyde in trying to save the world.
The trailer blends the violent action with irreverent humor. Many of the people that get wrapped up in Jessica Hyde’s orbit seem to be reticent to help her in her quest to save the world. This includes Rainn Wilson‘s down on his luck virologist Michael Stearns, who joins Hyde in trying to save the world. Cusack will play Christie, a brilliant biotech engineer, in a rare television role. While the nature of his role is unclear, his appearance in the trailer includes sinister undertones that indicate he may be working against Jessica Hyde and her group.
Much of the criticism leveled against the original British series centered around the show’s depiction of violence. Instead of shying away from that, the Amazon adaptation seems to be leaning into this violence. Additionally, the series was praised for its striking visuals and again, Amazon looks to be aiming for the same. One way the series departs from its British counterpart is its emphasis on government conspiracy theories, according to Flynn, appropriate update for our conspiracy obsessed times. Turning the shadowy cabal called the Network in the original UK series into a government connected group is a logical extension of the show’s themes. Viewers will get to see all the glorious violence and humor featured in the trailer when Utopia hits Amazon Prime on September 25.