Hulu’s Utopia Falls Is About the Revolutionary Power of Art in a Dystopia

Breaking it down to break free.
Breaking it down to break free.
Image: Hulu
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Art can change your life. Free expression can give you the power to understand yourself, your past, the world around you. It can even set off a revolution. Utopia Falls is hoping that premise makes for good drama when it comes to Hulu.

It sounds like a typical performance show, at first blush: a group of teens get called up to perform in their big local talent show. Only, well, this isn’t your normal town—it’s a cloistered, dystopian mess of a place, and when the teens discover “the Archive”, a record of all the art and history they’ve missed, they’re faced with a big choice. Continue on as things were, or bring it to the competition with the knowledge they’ve gained, knowing their expression might start a revolution—if it doesn’t get them killed first?

That basic dilemma is outlined in the trailer for Utopia Falls, which is coming to Hulu on February 14th. It looks cheesy but also sort of delightful, Glee meets The Hunger Games. Not all dystopian science fiction needs to be grim, after all. Sometimes it can have Outkast, and choreographed dance routines. As a treat. 


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io9 Weekend Editor. Videogame writer at other places. Queer nerd girl.

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Art has always been subversive. It’s sort of its job.

But as another poster pointed out a few days ago, it’s people and action that change things. Often, unfortunately, violent action because the psychopaths in charge rarely ever gracefully compromise, let alone capitulate.