The main thing that made Game of Thrones relevant after its premiere in 2011 was the late-season beheading of heroic main character Ned Stark. (I would say rest in power, but that man being too idealist to politick made his death inevitable.) David Benioff and D.B Weiss might just pull off the same trick in their latest, Netflix’s 3 Body Problem, based on the books by Cixin Liu. The pair, together with executive producer, showrunner, and writer Alexander Woo, are back with a new eight-episode apocalypse. This time, it’s aliens that may bring forth the end of the world, not white walkers. “A young woman’s fateful decision in 1960s China reverberates across space and time to a group of brilliant scientists in the present day,” reads the official synopsis, per the press release. “As the laws of nature unravel before their eyes, five former colleagues reunite to confront the greatest threat in humanity’s history.” In the trailer, we see an alternate universe’s Communist China and seemingly modern west as officials uncover weird numbers written in blood. A horse is afire in a burning cathedral. And someone’s public execution is totally giving Ned Stark. A smart reference — if the plot point ain’t broke, don’t fix it!
“Anything might be out there,” says an offscreen narrator. “The unknown troubles us. There are those who say we should not inquire too closely into who else might be living in that darkness. Better not to know. But we continue to search. Life looks for life.” Jess Hong, Benedict Wong, Eiza González, Jovan Adepo, Alex Sharp, John Bradley, Saamer Usmani, Liam Cunningham, Rosalind Chao, Jonathan Pryce, Marlo Kelly, Sea Shimooka, Ben Schnetzer, and Zine Tseng star. 3 Body Problem hits Netflix January 2024.