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Existential Binge-Watching: ‘Upload’ deserves as many seasons as it wants

After a nearly two year wait, the second season of the Amazon Prime hit Upload finally premiered a couple of weeks ago in its entirety. The science fiction dramedy saw its episode count drop from 10 to seven for its sophomore debut, likely due to the pandemic. While the long delay hurt a bit, it was all very much worth it in the end.

If you’re unfamiliar with Upload, the series revolves around a world in which your consciousness can be uploaded to a digital afterlife, in addition to some other fun technological details like self-driving cars and everyday life being run by things like drone deliveries and robotic arm cashiers at grocery stores.

It’s a futuristic setting for sure, but one that also feels like it’s right around the corner. The ideas presented are outlandish enough to have a lot of fun while viewing, but also close enough to home that it really gets you thinking about some of these forms of tech that don’t seem too far away in real life.

Season two picks right back up from the cliffhanger ending of season one, and while it’s maybe a bit faster paced and jumpier in some areas due to the condensed episode count, it certainly doesn’t lack in its story. The drama, the charm and, of course, the humor is all still there and better than ever.

Created by Greg Daniels — who you may recognize from some little shows like The Office or Parks and Recreation — his flair for not only comedy but also amazingly well-rounded and heartfelt characters is prevalent through every single minute of Upload. There’s obviously plenty of laughs to get from a show about the digital afterlife, but at its core there are incredible story threads woven throughout about what it means to be human and even plenty of political activism in regard to things like corporate greed or environmentalism.

A lot is packed into each episode and that’s due largely in part to the striking balance of comedy and drama that Daniels brings to the series. There’s plenty of room to relax and take in all of the humor and craziness, but Upload doesn’t sacrifice pivotal plot points or important character interactions for a cheap laugh. Everything is done carefully and in a way that feels intricately thought out.

Much of that praise must also be given to the cast. From Robbie Amell and Andy Allo to Allegra Edwards and Kevin Bigley, each cast member gives it their all. Whether they’re a lead or more of a side character, each and every person is as hilarious as they are talented and committed to their roles.

This might be most clear in the form of Owen Daniels’ portrayal as the A.I. Guy seen running throughout the digital afterlife location the series is primarily set in, Lakeview. Daniels has multiple variations, as the A.I. Guy is simply modeled after a real life counterpart’s likeness, and he absolutely owns every second of screen time he gets. Serving also as a writer and story editor for Upload, he might just be one of the most entertaining aspects about the whole show.

Essentially, this is all to say that if you haven’t taken the time yet to watch Upload, you definitely should. It’s an easy binge with only 17 episodes currently that run at about a half hour each. And it very much deserves another full, post-pandemic third season and as many more as it wants after that.

Between Greg Daniels’ confidence and his persistence at leaving viewers on cliffhanger endings for both seasons now, a third outing seems likely. But, it can’t help to continually binge the show a few times so that Amazon has no choice but to keep giving us some more wonderfully chaotic time in the world of Upload.

Jackson Horvat is a senior studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnist do not reflect those of The Post. Do you agree? Tell Jackson by tweeting him at @horvatjackson.

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