Chernobyl – TV Mini Series Review

Have you heard of this new mini series on Sky/ Not TV called Chernobyl and have you watched it yet?


I’m generally a binge watcher when it comes to a TV series although it can be quite hard to avoid spoilers occasionally. With this I didn’t really worry about the spoiler side of things as it’s more of a retelling of real life event from 1986. I was turning 16 when this happened and I can remember it being reported on the news on a daily basis for a very long time.

This series has only 5 episodes and covers in depth what happened from those who were closely involved with dealing with the disaster at the time. It has the highest rating on IMDb in a very short space of time, so that really has to tell you something about the quality of this series.

Like I said above its more of the retelling of the story and the after events that followed. It has a number of recognisable faces starring in it such as, Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgard, Emily Watson, Paul Ritter and Jessie Buckley to name just a few and the acting was just fantastic. The story is a slow build up, going back on itself after covering the initial event itself. It covers the catalogue of events that lead up to the event along with the management and clean up effort ( which was just mammoth!).

If you remember this being covered on the news ( or even if you are too young to know anything about it) this is a definite must watch. It’s scary, harrowing and really quite a traumatic watch when the sheer scale of it sinks in as you get further through the episodes. The depiction of those initially caught up with the disaster, such as those involved at the nuclear plant as well as the fire rescue teams that initially turned up to help, was shocking but visually fantastic in a macabre way, the make up/ special affects that recreated how their bodies suffered and who seemed to just literally ‘melt’ away was scarily believable!

If you are a person who can easily catastrophize and worries about world events or disasters then I can categorically say this is definitely NOT for you! However, if you can watch and not let your mind run away with itself then I implore you to watch it. The sheer scale of the impact that one explosion had simply because it was nuclear was phenomenal. The absolute harshness of what had to be done during the containment and clear up, and I’m referring to the animal cull that took place was also quite shocking. I mean you instantly know and are shocked by the human loss but the cull of domestic and wild animals to help prevent further infection spreading is something you wouldn’t even possibly enter your mind until you see it. Someone had to do that, actual people had to do it as a job!

The extent of the initial cover up from Government levels down is truly eye opening! I mean says that the Soviet Union at the time only ever recorded 31 deaths attributed to the disaster ( which has still remained unchanged!) and yet it is estimated that the actual number somewhere between 4,000 and 93,000. Just let that sink in……………up to 93,000 people with deaths relating to that one nuclear explosion.

The characters were well portrayed and it truly shows how horrifying the whole thing must have been, and the quality of the acting was fantastic. The story is heartbreaking, harrowing and some bits are particularly hard to watch but at the same time it was absolutely compelling, once you start this mini series you will be undeniably absorbed until the very end. It will leave you wondering and worrying in the back of your mind that something like this could very easily happen again with the way the world is today.

Have you watched it yet- if so what did you think?


** photo credits to Radio Times and HBO**

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