Amazon’s new series ‘Undone’ uses animation to explore reality
Amazon’s new animated series “Undone” is a dramedy that questions the nature of reality.
When viewers first meet Alma, she appears to be in a rut. She’s bored with her life and finds herself in a relationship where her partner offers her more affection than she can feel. After getting into a massive fight with her sister, Alma is distracted and crashes her car.
When she wakes up from a coma, Alma finds herself communicating with her dead father and begins to wonder if her shifting reality is a result of the accident or something else. While speaking to her father, Alma questions the circumstances around his death after he tells her he was murdered instead of dying in a car accident. Her father begins to train Alma to move through time and function in an elasticized version of reality. As she moves back and forth to different moments in her life, Alma discovers new information about her loved ones and the secrets that they’re keeping from her. While trying to discover the truth about her father’s death, Alma has to help her sister plan her wedding and deal with her difficult relationship with her mother.
As viewers watch “Undone,” they’ll find themselves wondering if the mystery Alma is trying to solve really happened or if the mystery is something she created in her trauma-addled head.
The series, created by “BoJack Horseman” creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg features rotoscoping, a form of animation created by filming the actors on set and having animators draw over the footage to create a not-quite-real version of the world. The use of rotoscoping allows some of the show’s trippier elements to feel more rooted in reality to provide viewers with a better understanding of Alma’s new reality.
Rosa Salazar (Alita: Battle Angel) shines as Alma, with her deeply expressive gestures seamlessly coming through the animation so clearly at times viewers will forget they’re watching her through a rotoscoped lens. Bob Odenkirk (Better Call Saul) plays Alma’s father, Jacob, a professor who claims he was killed for his groundbreaking research. Both actors create a believable father-daughter dynamic.
“Undone” has one season available on Amazon. Audiences may also enjoy watching Amazon’s series “Good Omens,” which follows the unlikely pairing of an angel and a demon who have to team up to prevent Armageddon.