A Tunnel in the Sky

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Hulu series

Reviewed by Galen Strickland
Posted March 27, 2024

Extraordinary premiered on Hulu in January of last year, the second season coming earlier this month. I recall reading about it but didn't watch until recently, after Charlie Jane Anders brought it up with a "best show you're not watching" comment. It is a Disney production, and may have been on Disney+ in other countries, especially the UK since that is where it is set and filmed, but I think Hulu got it first in the US due to its mature themes and situations. It is crass, tasteless, and irreverent, with lots of profanity (within the first 30 seconds in the first episode). It is also hilarious, and very meaningful beyond the SF/F trappings. No word if it will be released on disc, so for now you need Hulu to watch it, or the Disney/Hulu bundle.

Imagine a world where everyone at the age of 18 receives a super power. It may be the power of flight, invisibility, telepathy, super strength, or any number of other phenomena. Speaking of crass and tasteless, I won't talk about the powers Gordon and Randall have. Now imagine you are 25 and still have not received your power. That is the situation Jen (Máiréad Tyers) finds herself in. Her best friend Carrie (Sofia Oxenham) can channel the spirits of the dead, which she utilizes in her job as a legal aide. Carrie's boyfriend Kash (Bilal Hasna) can manipulate time. Jen's mother (Siobhán McSweeney) has the ability to interact with electronics, none of which she actually understands. Her sister (Safia Oakley-Green) has super strength. Everyone looks at Jen as someone to pity, or in the case of Carrie, to protect from the ridicule of others. Part of that is frequently channeling Jen's late father for consoling conversations.

Now forget all of that. The strength of the series is the interactions between the characters, which can be viewed in the context of people just trying to figure out life and how they fit into society. Family relationships, including trauma and sibling rivalries; the comfort of friendships, but also betrayals; the perils of the work environment; simply searching for what is important for a satisfying life. Jen undergoes therapy to figure out why her power hasn't manifested, her therapist suspecting it could be her inability to come to terms with losing her father. Can she give up their interactions, via Carrie? Will she ever acknowledge how she has held Carrie back by insisting on her channeling her father? There are several other things I won't give details about, such as why Jen's eventual boyfriend is known as Jizzlord (real name Rob), and what his other dilemmas are all about. As in real life, some flaunt their power (prestige, wealth, privilege), others use it to bully, or else wallow in pity if the power is insignificant.

Even though I didn't binge watch, it is as bingeable as any show I can think of. Two seasons totalling only sixteen episodes, each thirty minutes or less. There damn well better be a third season. I have my suspicions of what Jen will face if we're lucky enough to get a continuation, but even if I'm wrong I want to see it. Highly recommended.


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Emma Moran

Premiere Date
January 25, 2023

Máiréad Tyers
Sofia Oxenham
Bilal Hasna
Luke Rollason
Siobhán McSweeney
Robbie Gee
Shaun Mason
Abraham Popoola
Chris Lew Kum Hoi
Olivia Marcus
Nora Robson
Julian Barratt

Full Credits at IMDb

Available on Hulu.