“Love, Death & Robots” is an animated series that imagines life beyond humans. Every episode is a short story that, in one way or another, hints toward the end of human civilization. Apocalypse is an inevitable reality in the world of “Love, Death & Robots,” and the series imagines how the Earth might be destroyed by robots, zombies, alien species, or even by human idiocy. Some episodes are hilarious, while others are thought-provoking. The series manages to keep it interesting even with a third season.
Episode 1, ‘Three Robots: Exit Strategies’ Explained
Three robots visit planet Earth to study what went wrong with human civilization. They wanted to study how humans try to survive in an apocalyptic situation. They first walked into a forest where they found the remains of humans who had lost their lives in an attempt to survive solely on game meat. Humans were “snackish,” they concluded, owing to the extinction of deer that eventually resulted in the termination of human lives due to lack of food. They also concluded that the group ultimately fought amongst themselves to survive, though, in the end, none lived.
They next went to an old oil rig that was renovated into a luxury resort. The millionaires spent their final days in opulence, only to be overthrown by the robots they trusted to serve them. The wealthy humans left the working class to survive on their own, and they trusted the AI to do the labor work. The AIs rose against their masters and refused to serve them any longer. The rebellion resulted in the death of humans due to starvation. The robots were proud to have witnessed the place from where it all began-the rise of the robot civilization.
The robots visited the self-sustaining bunkers where the government officials chose to hide. They planned to rebuild human civilization someday, though that was never fulfilled. They resorted to cannibalism in the end, as their hydroponic crops were destroyed by fungus. Finally, the robots witnessed the high-tech rocket launch base, which was built by the richest few in the world. They planned to colonize Mars, but their attempts failed. What the robots realized was that humans had more than enough resources to survive if they did not choose greed over saving civilization. Instead of building high-end rockets, they could have invested the money into saving the planet that they had. In the end, the robots watch a video of a rocket that was launched successfully. We find an entity sipping on milk while wearing an astronaut’s suit. It was a genetically modified intelligent cat. He asks the viewers if they thought it was going to be “Elon Musk.” The first episode of “Love, Death & Robots” Season 3 is both humorous and intriguing. There might come a point when robots will make more sense than all of humanity, and the colonization dreams of the world’s richest men will prove to be futile.
Episode 2, ‘Bad Traveling’ Explained
“Bad Traveling,” tells the story of what happened when a giant man-eating crustacean, Thanapod, boarded a shark-hunting ship. After feasting on a few men on board, it was time for someone to negotiate with the monster. Torrin was selected to do the talking. The rest of the people on board assumed that Torrin would be gulped by the monster, but to their surprise, he managed to communicate with it. He negotiated to take him to Phaedin Island, the place where Thanapod wanted to go, and in exchange, he demanded the key the creature had taken. He took the key and went straight to the room where he opened a box with it, and he took out a gun from it. Torrin was the powerful man onboard now. He had a gun, and he was the one who could negotiate with the creature. He explained that the creature wanted to travel to Phaedin Island, and he believed that by deporting Thanapod to the island, they would risk the lives of thousands. Even though the journey to Phaedin was easier and shorter, it would have been better if they chose to throw him off a deserted island, as that would result in minimal deaths. He asked the passengers to vote, and he declared that most voted for the deserted island. He shot two men who voted against it and fed them to the monster.
The passengers feared for their lives and attempted to murder him, but with his intelligence, he was able to overthrow each one of them. Before feeding the last man to the monster, he mentioned that every one of them had voted for Phaedin island, and it was because of their selfishness that they deserved to die. In the end, Torrin went to the basement where Thanapod waited; the floor was filled with blood and human bones. He unleashed the oil that was kept in the barrel and lit a fire. He rushed and escaped from the hold of Thanapod and climbed into an adjoining boat. He rowed the boat away from the ship and watched it getting destroyed, killing Thanapod and its brood.
“Bad Traveling” questions the moral standing of humans. It was Torrin who thought about the larger population and, in the process, sacrificed all the passengers who chose themselves. But to think of it, even if all the passengers had voted for the deserted island, it would have been impossible to make the journey without sacrificing men to feed the creature. While Torrin’s decision was historic and brave, it involved sacrificing others and saving himself in the end. Therefore, can Torrin be thought of as completely selfless, or was he just cleverer than the rest? This moral ambiguity is what makes Episode 2 of “Love, Death & Robots” all the more interesting.
Episode 3, ‘The Very Pulse Of The Machine’ Explained
When the rover crashed, two astronauts were left stranded on the Io moon. Astronaut Martha Kievlson makes it out alive, but her partner Burton dies in the process. She carries Burton around the Sulphur Dioxide dominant moon. When she checks the visor map, she learns that she is forty-five miles away from the lander. The pain from the broken arm was unsettling, so Martha decided to inject morphine into her body. After taking the drug, she starts to imagine the voice of Burton reciting her favorite poems. She initially believed it to be the morphine that was causing the hallucination, but then, with its riddles, the voice demanded Martha to guess who she was. She concluded from the riddles that Io was a machine. The voice agreed, saying that since the surface is made of sulfur, the sledge picked up charges and could decipher Burton’s brain as it continued to live. The language it said was data, the radio was a medium, and Io was a machine. With the electromagnetic spectrum, Martha watched how Io was internally connected with what seemed to be neurons. In the end, when she realizes that she cannot make it to the lander and that by diving into the thermal liquid, she could be one with Io, she goes for it. The machine’s function was to know, and Martha’s mind would continue to live within the planet just like Burton. Not knowing if she was hallucinating or if it was the truth, Martha decided to jump into the liquid and give herself a chance to live beyond death. In the end, Martha seems to have assimilated into the moon and its consciousness.
Episode 4, ‘Night Of The Mini Dead’ Explained
Using miniature landscapes, the episode narrates the story of a zombie apocalypse. The zombies rose from their graves when a couple was merrymaking in a graveyard and, in the process, broke a structure that led to the fall of the cross. A thunder struck the reversed cross, and that led to the zombie phenomenon. The zombies took over one city after another, and in the process, they even reacted with a chemical substance, resulting in their growing bigger than usual and destroying the cities into ashes. The White House maintained that there were no zombies in their country, but when the zombies reached the White House, the POTUS instructed them to launch all nuclear weapons that the United States owned. This resulted in other nations launching their nuclear missions as well. The nuclear war and ultimate destruction of Earth was nothing but a tiny fart amidst the vastness of the galaxy. Humorous, innovative, and brilliant-the “night of the mini dead” will surely entertain.
Episode 5, ‘Kill Team Kill’ Explained
Sergeant Nielson of the US Special Forces is sent on an expedition with his team to learn about the mysterious deaths that are taking place in that region. They were soon encountered by a genetically engineered grizzly bear. While the men from his team lost their lives, they were saved by Sergeant Morris with the help of high-pitched sounds that the bear could not tolerate. The man was the sole survivor in the region, and he explained that the grizzly bear was no ordinary bear; it had retractable anti-personnel titanium talons and diamond carbine canines, all wrapped in a ballistic-resistant gel under its skin. The man took the team to his base, where there was enough equipment to destroy the creature. They waited for the bear to attack, and when it finally did, they attacked it from all angles, but killing the bear was tough. When it seemed almost impossible to kill, Sergeant Nielson launched a fire straight into its heart, killing it ultimately. But it was not the end. The eyes of the bear activated a self-destruction mechanism and ultimately blew the entire mountain.
Episode 6, ‘Swarm’ Explained
Galina had been researching the ‘Swarm’ for years now. She learned to live in the alien star system. Her studies into the workings of the swarm helped her to learn how they were composed of several castes, and other alien species were also absorbed into the hive. Every creature worked for the queen and helped in building the hive. This mechanism triggered interest in humans to develop a similar system that would guarantee efficiency from the workers who were not sentient beings and would not rise in rebellion. To explain this interest, Simon Afriel arrives and discusses its potential with Galina, who initially was not in favor of the idea. But the interest of the humans in creating a similar system to theirs triggered the hive. Taking Galina under its control, it explained how the previous creatures from other planets tried to dominate them but failed and now were absorbed into the hive. The hive fought against any alien invader by studying its genetic material and producing similar species to fight against their own. They would do the same with the human species now that they had Galina and Simon’s genetic information to create new humans. They would be used to attack any other human who dared to study the swarm. For efficient and cheap labor, humans face the burn on an alien planet, where they learn the tough lesson that exploitation is not always the answer.
Episode 7, ‘Mason’s Rats’ Explained
When an old Scottish farmer shoots a rat in his barn, he discovers that the rats have evolved into highly intelligent creatures. He sought help from a pest control company that used high-end technology to combat pests. Since the first termination system was destroyed by the intelligent rats, he was handed over the TT-15 Scorpion robot, whose only aim was to kill all the rats in the barn. Though after witnessing the brutal way in which the robots killed the rats and the sadness of the rats upon the death of their comrades, the farmer shot the robot. He sat down with the rats and enjoyed a glass of wine that the rats made. He ultimately called the company, asking them to return the check that he issued for the TT-15.
Mason, in the end, realized that the rats had developed compassion. They mourned the deaths of their fellow fighters, and, ultimately, they were fighting for their families and homes. This changed Mason’s heart, realizing that the rats were no different than human beings. The fact that human beings have gone through world wars where they lost uncountable lives made Mason rethink his decision because, at the end of the day, he was the one engaging in a futile war.
Episode 8, ‘In Vaulted Halls Entombed’ Explained
Coulthard led his team into a cave after noticing insurgents entering the place. While they planned to end the lives of the insurgents, they were greeted by metal-bodied spiders. After the spider attack, only Coulthard and Harper managed to survive. Harper wanted to leave the cave through a tunnel that she spotted could take them back to the surface, but Coulthard was distracted. He was swayed away by an alien whisper, and he started walking towards it. Harper repeatedly asked him not to proceed, but he did not care. They ultimately reached the spot where an elderly God was kept trapped for thousands of years. The screams of God asking them to release him take over Coulthard’s mind, but Harper knew that if released, it would destroy all of humanity. She shot him dead, and we find that she ultimately made it out of the cave with a knife in her hand. Since she had set her eyes on the evil God, she was taken over by madness, which perhaps was the reason why she removed her eyes. Even though she was alive, she was completely broken and left in a state of horror.
Episode 9, ‘Jibaro’ Explained
‘Love, Death & Robots’ Season 3 finale episode, “Jibaro,” is about a siren who rises from the lake, and her song leads to the death of several men. When a woman wrapped in gold ornaments rose and sang her song, men were drawn toward her, which ultimately led to their death. While all the soldiers fell into the trap of the woman wrapped in gold, Jibaro escaped from her power. He was deaf, and that saved his life. The woman was surprised by her failure, and that infatuated her. Jibaro was happy to have lost his fellow soldiers since he could now take back all the wealth he had found in the forest. At night, the woman slept next to him. In the morning, he woke up to find her beside him, and he was enchanted by all the gold on her body. He kissed her and violated her body to take away all the gold that was wrapped around her. Leaving her unconscious, the soldier tried to escape the forest with his bag full of gold. But the woman rose again, and this time the blood from her violated body filled the river. When Jibaro drank water from the river to quench his thirst, he was cured of his deafness. He was confused by the change and went into a state of frenzy. The Golden woman sang her song, and this time Jibaro was not spared from her power. He was drawn into the lake, and her voice pained him. He ultimately died and fell into the water body, and we witnessed him join the thousands of men whose bodies lay in the river bed. The golden woman was perhaps the protector of the forest, whose voice helped keep away invaders who wanted to excavate the land for its wealth. While the golden woman thought that Jibaro was different, he too proved that he was just the same.
See More: ‘Love, Death & Robots’ Season 2: All Shorts Explained