Review of the Fallout TV Series


Well-known member
Nov 27, 2019

Before I get started, this review will be spoiler free, but I will open the discussion below to spoilers, you have been warned.

A television series published by Amazon based of the Fallout series on video games released April 11nth viewable on Amazon Prime Video. Me and my better half binged the series when it came out and I decided to share my thoughts.

See the trailer below.

I've been a fan of the games since Fallout 3 and whilst games vary in strength from a storytelling perspective, it was always going to be a challenge to tell a story in this universe from the more uninvolved perspective one has merely watching said story as apposed to role playing it. A very different challenge as, say, the Last of US TV series on HBO because even though one controlled Joel in the The Last of Us video game, the story was was still told from an observers perspective. Adapting a video game whare the player has full control over what a character says, whare they go and what they do right down to the base morals was never going to be easy. Maybe impossible to do in a way that pleases everyone.

However, I've got to give Amazon, MGM Studios and Kitler films thier props because I think they absolutely nailed it!

First, the story. Shades of Fallout 3 with the naïve, but courageous Lucy Maclain (Ella Purnell) as she leaves the sanctuary of a nuclear survivor's shelter called Vault 33 to search for her father, the Vault's overseer, kidnapped by a mysterious raider named Moldaver (Sarita Cloudhury). Meanwhile, a defected Enclave Scientist is pursued by a pre-war actor named Cooper Howard turned bounty hunter now known as "The Ghoul" (Walton Goggins) and an opportunistic Brotherhood of Steel Squire named Maximus (Aaron Moten). This is a complex, yet deeply compelling story with a great drive, great energy, great pacing with lots of unexpected twists and turns. As the viewer, you are always kept guessing as the full story behind not just the motivations of our characters, but the origins of the great war itself unravel. The show pulled no punches with the violence and with a surprising amount of superb comedy thrown in for free along with all the drama. I absolutely loved it.

The aesthetics are absolutely nailed. This looks exactly as fans of the show would hope with authentic looking costumes and sets. The pre-war and Vault settings in particular I liked, especially the pre-war cars, many of which actually appeared to be fully functional, a nice touch. What creative liberties were taken, they were smart about. Nothing felt out of place. The effects, both practical and CGI were also really good.

However, one thing I wasn't so sure about was Walton Goggins make up as "The Ghoul". Compared to the other ghouls in the series and, indeed, the games, he skin looked a little to "complete" in the sense that it didn't really look like it was hanging off like it should with a very monotone look to the colour. He looked less like a ghoul and more like a burn victim with a spray-on tan. Here's a side-by-side of Walton Goggins as "The Ghoul" and a Ghoul from Fallout 3 and I just think that the Ghoul from Fallout 3 looks better with a varied colour pallet and more varied textures going on.


The characters themselves are well fleshed out and very well performed by all the cast, no complaints here. Whether you agree with thier motivations and goals or not, you are always given a chance to relate to them and understand them. The show never gets bogged down with exposition, we learn about these characters through the story in a vey easy to digest yet exiting way. This doesn't mean I like all the characters though, more specifically Maximus. The guy was traitorous, selfish, stupid and incompetent. That would have bene fine if it weren't for two serious issues:

  1. I didn't feel like this character really learned or grew much at all through the story. He was pretty much the same self-centred glory hound at the end that was at the start.
  2. The show tried a little too hard to make one empathise with him, even when he was at his worst, and that was annoying.

Still, Maximus aside, these characters really grew on me. I loved Lucy for her sincere compassion as well as her courage and admire the way she refused to let this harsh, merciless world re-shape her principles. A clever contrast to The Ghoul/Cooper who left me wanting more of the heart that has clearly been buried and hardened by decades of life in this world and the tragedies' in his life. And even without that, he would still be ruthlessly fucking cool. And I must say, I want The Ghoul's Gun modded into Fallout 4 immediately.

The only other thing I didn't like was Amazon and thier stupid video player. Not only did it glitch out frequently blackening the screen in whole or in part several times while watched, we still had to put up with ads even though we pay for Amazon Prime. Sorry, but that's not good enough. I'd actually feel inclined to download this show if I wanted to rewatch it to avoid this nonsense.

But that's nothing against the show itself. It was entertaining, compelling, respected the source material and was well produced. I am even temped to say this was better than HBO's The Last of Us as an adaptation, and that is saying something. A much watch for both fans and newcomers alike.


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