In the age of television where science fiction series and apocalyptic dramas abound, “Years and Years” stands out as a unique gem that captivates viewers with its realistic and deeply disturbing vision of the future. This television series, created by Russell T Davies, transports us to a constantly evolving world and shows us how political, technological and social events can shape our lives in the blink of an eye. With its compelling narrative and ability to foresee future events, “Years and Years” makes us reflect on the present and the direction we are heading as a society.
A story that spans years:
“Years and Years” unfolds over several years, beginning in the present and projecting into the near future. The series follows the Lyons family, residents of Manchester, and shows us how their lives and relationships are affected by global events shaking the world. From the rise of populist politicians and the growing influence of artificial intelligence to the refugee crisis and geopolitical tensions, the series explores a wide range of issues and challenges we face as a society.
Realistic and complex characters:
One of the strengths of “Years and Years” lies in its exceptional cast and characterization of its characters. The Lyons family is made up of diverse and complex individuals, each with their own aspirations, struggles and ethical dilemmas. Emma Thompson shines in her role as Vivienne Rook, a charismatic populist political leader who is gaining ground as the world descends into uncertainty. The lead actors, including Anne Reid, Rory Kinnear, T’Nia Miller, Russell Tovey, Jessica Hynes and Ruth Madeley, deliver solid, believable performances that make viewers identify with their characters.
A futuristic vision that feels relatable:
Although “Years and Years” shows us a fictional future, its depiction of events and technological advances feels astonishingly close to reality. The series tackles hot-button issues such as media manipulation, political polarization, mass surveillance and the impact of artificial intelligence on our daily lives. As we watch the series, we can’t help but question how far we are from living in a similar world and what decisions we are making today that could lead us down that path.
Reflections on the present and the future:
“Years and Years” is more than just an entertaining television series. It is a play that invites us to reflect on our society, our values and our choices. It confronts us with our own responsibilities as citizens and challenges us to consider the long-term consequences of our actions. It also shows us how our individual and collective decisions can have a significant impact on the future, whether for good or ill.
The portrayal of contemporary politics
The series significantly addresses current political issues and provides a critical look at various aspects of contemporary politics, such as populism, media manipulation and the rise of charismatic leaders. Through its plot and characters, the series exposes and examines these political phenomena, providing the audience with a thoughtful perspective on the implications and dangers associated with them.
In relation to populism, the series shows how populist leaders can tap into the concerns and frustrations of ordinary people to gain political support. It highlights how these leaders often simplify and polarize problems, offering simplistic solutions that appeal to emotions rather than addressing problems in a rigorous, evidence-based manner. The series shows the negative consequences of a populist approach, such as the lack of sound policies and the erosion of democratic institutions.
In addition, the series also focuses on media manipulation and how political leaders can use it to shape public opinion in their favor. It explores how the media can be used to spread disinformation, distort the truth and manipulate the perception of reality. Through key characters, the series shows how charismatic leaders can exploit this media power to maintain and strengthen their control over society.
Regarding the rise of charismatic leaders, the series analyzes how these individuals can gain a devoted following through their charisma and persuasive communication skills. It shows how these political figures can use their charisma to generate blind loyalty and uncritical adherence to their leadership, even when their actions may be detrimental to society at large. The series highlights the importance of questioning and critically examining these leaders, rather than being swayed solely by their charisma and seductive rhetoric.
The impact of technology on society
“Years and Years” is a series that provocatively and insightfully explores the impact of technology on society and how it can influence various aspects of our lives, our relationships, our privacy and our perception of reality. The series raises important questions and challenges about the growing dominance of technology in our contemporary world.
The series shows how technology is becoming increasingly pervasive and playing a fundamental role in the way we relate to others. The effects of social networks, smart devices and digital communication on interpersonal relationships are explored. As technology advances, the series illustrates how there can be an emotional disconnect and decreased intimacy in human interactions as communication becomes more virtual and less face-to-face. The series also examines how technology can be addictive and consume much of our time and attention, affecting our ability to connect meaningfully with others.
“Years and Years” addresses the issue of privacy in the digital age. The series shows how technology can gradually erode our privacy, whether through constant monitoring, personal data collection or mass surveillance. Concerns are raised about the use and abuse of personal information, as well as the ethical dilemmas associated with technology and the protection of individual privacy.
The series also examines how technology can influence our perception of reality. As news and information spread rapidly through digital platforms, questions are raised about the reliability of information and the ability to distinguish fact from fiction. The series shows how technology can be used to manipulate public opinion and spread misinformation, which can have a significant impact on politics, society and our understanding of the world around us.
The refugee and immigration crisis
“Years and Years” significantly addresses the refugee and immigration issue, presenting a shocking view of society’s response to this humanitarian crisis. The series challenges viewers to reflect on empathy and solidarity in a globalized world where migration has become a central issue.
The series shows the challenges and difficulties faced by refugees fleeing their home countries in search of safety and better opportunities. It portrays the desperate conditions in which they live, the dangers they face and the bureaucratic obstacles they encounter along the way. Through refugee characters, the series humanizes the experience of those forced to leave their homes and shows the individual stories behind the numbers and statistics.
The series shows how society and governments respond to the massive influx of refugees. It explores diverse attitudes and reactions, from solidarity and humanitarian aid to fear and hostility. The series highlights debates and tensions around immigration, national security and cultural identity, raising difficult questions about how countries and individuals should approach this humanitarian crisis.
“Years and Years” challenges viewers to reflect on empathy and solidarity in a globalized and connected world. The series shows how political decisions and social attitudes can profoundly affect the lives of refugees and how a lack of empathy can have devastating consequences. By presenting personal and emotional stories, the series invites viewers to put themselves in the shoes of refugees, challenging prejudices and stereotypes and encouraging understanding and empathy towards the most vulnerable.
The evolution of the family and intergenerational relationships
“Years and Years” presents a meaningful representation of the changing dynamics within the Lyons family and how they face the challenges of the future. The series effectively reflects the social and cultural changes in real-life family relationships, providing an insightful view of evolving family and intergenerational relationships.
In the series, themes such as generational change, family tensions and the challenges that arise as each member of the Lyons family grapples with their own perspective and life experiences are explored. As the world around them changes rapidly, the series shows how these changes affect family relationships and how family members navigate the challenges and conflicts that arise.
The series also addresses contemporary issues such as diversity, sexual and gender identity, and new forms of family configurations. Through characters such as Rosie Lyons, who is in a polyamorous relationship, or Daniel Lyons, who is gay and the father of a stepfamily, the series reflects the realities of modern families and challenges traditional conventions of what is considered a family.
“Years and Years” examines intergenerational relationships and how different members of the Lyons family have different perspectives and experiences based on their age and generation. The series shows how generational differences can lead to conflict, but also to mutual enrichment and learning. Issues such as the culture clash between generations, differences in values and struggles for mutual understanding are addressed.
The future of work and automation
“Years and Years” significantly addresses the impact of artificial intelligence and automation on the world of work, generating deep reflection on job security, economic inequality and the need for personal reinvention in a changing environment.
The series presents a futuristic vision where artificial intelligence and automation have drastically transformed the way work is performed. Scenarios are shown where technological advances have replaced workers in a variety of industries, generating concern and mass unemployment. The series shows how job security is threatened by automation and raises questions about the future of traditional jobs.
Similarly, “Years and Years” highlights the growing economic inequality as a result of automation. It shows how wealth and power are concentrated in the hands of a few, while a large portion of the population struggles to find employment and stay afloat in an increasingly competitive and challenging job market. The series addresses the social and political implications of this inequality and raises questions about the fair distribution of economic benefits in an automated world.
The series also invites characters and viewers to consider the need for personal and professional reinvention in a changing work environment. It explores the emotional and psychological challenges of adapting to new ways of working and the importance of flexibility and adaptability in the future. The series raises questions about how to reinvent oneself in a world where skills and jobs are rapidly evolving, and how people can find a sense of purpose and fulfillment in an ever-changing work context.
Phoneia.com (June 8, 2023). Years and Years: A Prophetic Portrait of the Future Ahead of Us. Recovered from https://phoneia.com/en/years-and-years-a-prophetic-portrait-of-the-future-ahead-of-us/