Raised By Wolves Reminded Ridley Scott Why He's Not A Writer

HBO cancelling "Raised by Wolves" after two seasons was disappointing for fans since the show tackled dense topics within the structure of a tense, thought-provoking drama about humans and androids. Showrunner Aaron Guzikowski had first conceived the idea for the show in form of a spec script, which gradually evolved into an emotionally-resonant, breathtaking saga with compelling characters.

In fact, Guzikowski's script was so good that Ridley Scott himself was convinced that he had to absolutely come on board and direct the pilot episode (and serve as executive producer), despite the director's initial hesitation of returning to the android theme.

While "Raised by Wolves" is definitely the result of collaboration between Scott and Guzikowski, the show reminded Scott that writing a compelling script is infinitely more laborious and demanding than directing, and that the former should be left to the experts, like Guzikowski.

A rare bird of a story

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Scott praised Guzikowski's skills as a writer, and spoke about the dynamics of their collaboration:

"Aaron is the master builder, and I'm like the house painter. I paint the house and put the nails in. So to go back to the first season, I knew we were developing it, and I've had a lot of this over the years, really specifically because of 'Blade Runner,' that I thought, okay, yes, a kind of interesting idea, but it's a tough one to crack because there are so many versions of that idea of robotics, androids, replicants."

By the time Scott had finished reading the pilot for "Raised by Wolves," he was hooked. He dubbed the story "a very rare bird," which prompted him to immediately start the storyboarding process (via The New York Times). Scott's readiness to get on board is not surprising at all: "Raised by Wolves" paints an extremely complex and well-thought-out picture about androids being in charge of human children, along with the consequences of a race being torn apart by religious differences.

"Raised by Wolves" focuses on two reprogrammed androids, Mother (Amanda Collin) and Father (Abubakar Salim), who take care of surviving human children on the semi-habitable planet of Kepler-22b. The show pits the last survivors of an atheist colony against yet another surviving colony of humans, who constitute a religious faction known as the Mithraic. Unbeknownst to both parties, Kepler-22b is not the kind of planet they were told it would be, as it is home to intelligent life that no one is aware of or have come across prior to the events of the series. 

'The hardest single thing is to write, full stop'

Part of why "Raise By Wolves" appealed to Scott is because it has a logical premise. He compares it to the example of Ash (Ian Holm) in "Alien," whose presence aboard the Nostromo is justified because — as a sleeper agent android — he is best suited to insure the Xenomorph reaches Weyland-Yutani safely.

Scott recognized the similarity in "Raised by Wolves," which also features a logical reason to use androids (in this case, repopulating humankind using frozen embryos), while also touching on grand themes about life and humanity's future. This project gave the director a chance to do what he does best: strengthening great ideas. He told Entertainment Weekly:

"It was great forming what I call the nuts and bolts and the cosmetics of shoring up a very big and grand idea that you've got to shore it up, otherwise it's going to weaken. And I think it worked very well, the combination worked very well to set the pace with Aaron's script. The hardest single thing to do is write, full stop. Doing what I do is a lot easier, I think. So my hat comes off to Aaron every time, who comes up with these and doesn't weaken on his tactics and storytelling, because it is like mathematics. That's what's wonderful."

Guzikowski absolutely deserves that praise because "Raised by Wolves" presented an extremely ambitious sci-fi premise — one that could have blossomed into something even more complex and interesting if the series had not been canceled after just two seasons. Nevertheless, we did get a glimpse into a world with extremely cool mechanics and complex rules, with none other than Ridley Scott helming the series and doing what he does best: bringing endless possibilities to life.