TV: The Rain (Season 3)

Unfortunately, the best thing you can say about the final season of The Rain, a dystopian YA series out of Denmark, is that it’s short. What began as an attractive, reasonably entertaining ensemble drama set in mysterious post-apocalypse ends as a fairly empty ensemble drama set in a garden-variety post-apocalypse. This one chronicles the adventures of Simone (Alba August) and Rasmus (Lucas Lynggaard Tønnesen), two siblings who survive a deadly weather-borne virus only to learn that their parents were directly involved in causing it. Since then, Rasmus—who appears to be a key to curing the disease—has developed inexplicable, lethal superpowers. He’s given himself over to the scientists of Apollon, led by Sten (Johannes Bah Kuhnke), and is now convinced that the way to save the world isn’t to cure the virus, but to spread it. Simone strenuously disagrees, and with the help of her rag-tag group of survivor friends, she sets out to stop him and save the world.

In its first season, The Rain made tantalizing promises, its cast managing to sustain interest by virtue of sheer charisma. But the show doesn’t really see those narrative promises through, failing to deconstruct the mystery of the pandemic’s origin with any  finesse, instead relying on increasingly wobbly science fantasy world-building. Its final two years coast entirely on character dynamics. Fortunately, those dynamics—carried by August, Mikkel Følsgaard, Lukas Løkken, Natalie Madueño, Evin Ahmad, Sonny Lindberg, and Rex Leonard, among others—are reasonably engaging, the actors sharing real chemistry. But thematically, after a brief nod toward possibly being a master-race cautionary tale, The Rain doesn’t really amount to anything. At a total of eighteen episodes, it’s not the worst entertainment time commitment I’ve ever made, but I can’t help wondering how much better it might have been had it, well, been about something.




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