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I am – Hercules!!

The first episode of “Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams” anthology series is scripted by “Battlestar Galactica” mastermind Ron Moore loosely based on a 1954 Dick story titled “Exhibit Piece,” but the installment may remind some viewers of Kyle Killen’s 2012 hourlong “Awake,” about a detective who can’t figure out which of his universes is real and which is a dream. It features Anna Paquin as lesbian cop who drives a flying squadcar; her wife (Rachel Lefevre) puts her in a virtual reality mystery set in a time before flying cars. But her virtual reality story is about someone named George (Terrence Howard) developing his own virtual realities. Is it as good as “Galactica”? I’m saying no. Is it as good as Moore’s “Outlander”? Maybe!

The second episode, in which something very much like has taken over the planet following an apocalypse, stars “Vinyl” girl Juno Temple and is a bit better.

In 1963 “The Twilight Zone” switched from half-hour to hourlong episodes, then switched back to half-hours for its final season in 1964. I think Rod Serling & Co. learned something modern-day producers have yet to learn: twisty sci-fi works better in smaller 22-minute chunks. But then again if you loved the 1990s version of “The Outer Limts,” this could be the show for you.

USA Today says:

... Electric Dreams works because there's a fascinating nugget of insight about humanity in every episode, even if they don't always succeed. There's a reason we keep returning to Dick's works over and over again, and it's worth visiting his Electric Dreams if only to remind us why. …

The New York Times says:

... it’s the most Philip K. Dick thing imaginable to find that “Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams,” based on his short stories, pales before some of the author’s recent imitators. But here we are. …

CNN says:

… Extremely uneven, this 10-episode Amazon series collectively proves pretty forgettable -- yielding a concept that, in this age of binge viewing, literally isn't worth losing sleep over. …

The Boston Globe says:

... The series is wildly uneven, with, among those I watched, some strong and affecting hours as well as some overly long, poorly designed, and thematically scrambled hours. …

Variety says:

... Those short on time should skip straight to “The Commuter” and “Impossible Planet,” which are both superb. “The Commuter,” a showcase for the terrific range and empathy of Timothy Spall, has the quietly unsettling atmosphere of a classic “Twilight Zone” scenario. In it, an everyman succumbs to the lures of a fantasy life that winds up being less attractive than it first seems, but the deft script by Jack Thorne mixes in notes of lyricism and hope. “Impossible Planet,” from “The Night Manager” scribe David Farr, often feels like a lost episode of “Star Trek”; it’s set hundreds of years in the future, but it has a timeless quality. This lovely parable embraces romance, grief and the shifting sands of memory in a story that is both elegantly contained and overflowing with emotion. The main cast members — Geraldine Chaplin, Jack Reynor and Benedict Wong — gel brilliantly, and special credit goes to the designer of the creepy robot on board the episode’s interstellar pleasure craft.

12:01 a.m. Friday. Amazon.

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