The Peripheral Season 1 Review

The Peripheral is a sci-fi thriller that is nothing short of entertaining, complex, and intriguing with a dystopian future that is somehow made better by technology.

The Peripheral Season 1 Review
It's been a while since we enjoyed a sci-fi series like we did The Peripheral. Source: Amazon Prime Video.

The Peripheral is a 2022 science-fiction drama set in the future about a girl who gets to travel way beyond her time only to realize that the prospects for her future may not be as bright as she'd like. The Peripheral is a sci-fi thriller that is nothing short of entertaining, complex, and intriguing with a dystopian future that is somehow made better by technology.

The Peripheral Season 1 Review

This post is both a review and a summary of The Peripheral. That is to say, it may contain spoilers.

Flynne Fisher

Flynne Fisher, played by Chloë Grace Moretz, is a teenager who is very good at playing simulation games or 'sims'. She and her brother Burton are good at playing these games with some high-tech headsets in the 2030s. The two are avid players of the sims and Flynne is far much better than her brother. She juggles her time working at the local 3D shop, 'Forever Fab', and taking care of their ill mother who's blind.

Burton and his army buddy Conner in the first season of The Peripheral
Burton and his army buddy Conner who's paralyzed. Burton spends most of his time playing sims while Conner spends most of his time getting drunk. Source: Prime Video.

Forever Fab

Forever Fab is a 3D printing shop that carries out orders from customers to make products ranging from small items to larger items. Flynne's brother Burton Fisher, played by Jack Reynor, gets a new job to try a new sim and an order to print a new sim headset.

The headset is different from their usual sim headsets and the company behind it, a Colombian company asks for Burton's avatar to play the sim. Flynne sometimes helps Burton play complicated games in the sim and she is far much better at playing the games than her brother.


Burton is a war veteran who was previously in the Marine Corps and is now a vet who is mostly in his trailer, by their house, playing sims. He and his friends from their former unit have some tech in them that is called 'haptics' that interlinks them and makes them stronger during a fight.

Through the haptics, they can share each other's pain and even kind of share senses where they can coordinate and link up to share info and the like. One of their friends, Conner Penske, played by Eli Goree, is paralyzed and is mostly drunk. Conner has to dig himself out of his misery as the boys are faced with some huge challenges.

The Future - 2099

The headset Burton was told to make by the Colombian company is now ready and Burton urges Flynne to take it for a ride. When she does, she's blown away by how real it feels where she is in a futuristic London. Unlike other sims that just use Virtual Reality, this one is more real to life.

Flynne wearing the headset that takes her to the future in The Peripheral Season 1
Flynne gets a kick from trying the headset for the first time. It is more real to life and she loves it. Source: Amazon Prime Video.

There, Flynne is in Burton's body and she meets an instructor, Aelita, played by Charlotte Riley. Aelita is mostly in a voice in her head at first but they later meet. The two go on a mission to steal data from an organization known as the Research Institute, RI.

This is Real

Over time, and after Aelita and Flynne (in the sim as Burton) successfully steal some data from the Research Institute, Flynne goes back, this time in a body similar to hers. She has a replica in the sim where she meets Wilf Netherton, played by Gary Carr, her new guide, who tells her that that sim is actually a real world in the future around 2100 and that through the headset she is controlling a real body in that world. Netherton warns that their stealing from the Research Institute means that the RI will come after them.

Flynne and Wilf in the future world in The Peripheral Season 1
Flynne meets Wilf in the future world who guides her on what she needs to do. Source: Amazon Prime Video.

The Research Institute

The Research Institute is an organization in the future that deals with all manner of research in numerous fields. It is the glue that holds the post-apocalyptic world together and has some really complex systems. The RI is led by a fierce woman by the name of Dr. Cherise Nuland, played by T'Nia Miller. Cherise is relentless and very fierce. She is adamant that the data stolen from RI must be returned and will do anything to see that done.

Lev Zubov

Lev Zubov, played by JJ Feild, is Wilf's boss. He is part of a Russian oligarchy and mafia in the future known as 'the Klept'. The Klept are part of the elites in the future and Lev Zubov, a member of one of the families of the Klept. is the one who puts Flynne up for the recovery of the data stolen from RI. The data is crucial, it emerges, to the workings of the two worlds, i.e Flynne's world and the future world.

The Data

The data stolen by Aelita and Flynne is research and is a whole library of what humanity has learned since even before 'the Jackpot', or the apocalypse. Wilf and the group, including Zubov, and two Northern Irelanders Ash, played by Katie Leung, and Ossian, played by Julian Moore-Cook, reveal to Flynne that her world is what is called a 'stub'. A stub is a past world that people from the future have gone to, to test several drugs and conduct mass human trials.

The stub and the future, depend heavily on the Research Institute and the work it conducts. As such, the data stolen from the RI is crucial, especially for its use for the continuity of life both in the stub and in the future world. The data is pursued by Lev Zubov for its potential profitability, however, and that's why he seeks it in the first place.

The Jackpot

The Jackpot is the apocalypse that happens soon after Flynne's world's time where a series of events lead to the end of the world. One of the big events is a terrorist attack on a nuclear silo in Spring Valley, close to Flynne's home.

The Jackpot also includes a pandemic, the nuclear fallout from the terrorist attack, and climate change events that lead to the end of the world as we know it. In the future world, Flynne is told that the pandemic will happen in her world and Cherise sets off the occurrence of the nuclear silo attack in motion and consequently, the jackpot.

Hit after Hit

Cherise will do anything to recover the data stolen from the RI. She sends several hitmen after Flynne and her family, who include Corbell Picket, played by Louis Herthum, Bob, played by Ned Dennehy, and even Daniel, her assistant, and member of the RI's security team.

Bob by the side of the road waiting for Flynne and Burton. Bob is sent to kill the Fishers by Daniel from the future.
Bob is a vicious hitman who's a legend for how good a killer he is. He is sent after the Fishers when Daniel (from the future) threatens his daughter. Source: Amazon Prime Video.

Daniel, played by David Hoflin, puts out a hit on Flynne and Burton Fisher. He first recruits Corbell, a local drug lord who fails, prompting Bob, a professional killer to be sent after Flynne and her family. The hits are unsuccessful, however, and even get Daniel killed in the future world after they come to an encounter with Flynne and Wilf in Aelita's place.

It's in Her Head

Flynne discovers that the headset is harming her body. When she goes to the local medical center, it is apparent something is in her brain and is altering her brain's functionality.

Cherise is the head of RI and is very intimidating
Cherise is the head of the Research Institute who's very intimidating, even in appearance. Source: Prime Video.

She later discovers that the data stolen from RI was stored in her head and for Cherise to get it, she'd have to kill her and retrieve it. As per Aelita's plan, however, the data was supposed to go to Burton's haptics where it would be stored for later retrieval. That did not happen as Flynne went in Burton's stead the first time she entered the future world.

The Inspector

Things get pretty complicated when the Police Inspector in the future world, Inspector Ainsley Lowbeer, played by Alexandra Billings, gets wind of what is happening. In the future, the higher-ups in law enforcement have access to virtually everything and can even eavesdrop and see what everyone is doing if they so wish. As such, when Ainsley comes knocking at Zubov's the team has to comply. As per the governance then, one can be charged with a crime and in just about 7 minutes executed. To prevent such gory outcomes, Zubov and the team tell her everything.

Inspector Ainsley Lowbeer and Beatrice in Season 1 of The Peripheral
Inspector Ainsley Lowbeer is very fearsome and you can sense that she's well-feared every time she enters a room. She's accompanied by her robot assistant, Beatrice. Source: Amazon Prime Video.

Let's Start an Entirely New Stub

In the end, Flynne goes to Inspector Ainsley with a plan to start an entirely new stub where Cherise won't be able to get to her. Flynne is directed on how to start it and when she does, she destroys the coordinates to that world so that Cherise can't pursue her there. To make things right in her own world, she instructs Conner to do the unthinkable and take her out.

Our Rating

The Peripheral is a thrilling sci-fi series that sci-fi nerds will very much enjoy. It is somewhat similar to 'Westworld' but comes with a whole new, complex, and wildly interesting storyline. We absolutely loved the series and we give it a 9.5/10. It is a must-watch and you should hurry and watch it. Enjoy.


Is The Peripheral Worth Watching?

Very much so, especially if you like sci-fi thrillers and futuristic series with wildly interesting science theories.

Will there be a Season 2 of The Peripheral?

Yes, there will be a Season 2 of The Peripheral. The series was renewed by Amazon Prime Video for a second season.

What Book is The Peripheral Based On?

The Peripheral is based on William Gibson's book also titled 'The Peripheral'. The series is adapted from the book though it is only loosely based on the occurrences in the book.

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