As a casual Sci-Fi fan, “Scavengers Reign” is the type of show I’ve longed for as it doesn’t heavily rely on any of the usual tropes or graphics to hook you in. Instead, it is all about getting you invested in the world and the characters, as all shows should venture to do.

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General Information




Sci-Fi, Animation

Noted Characters


Wunmi Mosaku


Alia Shawkat


Ted Travelstead


Bob Stephenson


Sunita Mani


Alia Shawkat


Pollyanna McIntosh


Plot Summary

In an undisclosed year, part of the crew of the Demeter 227 crash-landed on a planet named Vesta after a member of their crew changed their course to save their job. Unfortunately, they didn’t land in the same vicinity, but all had the same goal of finding a way to survive.

Azi (Wunmi Mosaku)
“Azi (Wunmi Mosaku),” Scavengers Reign, “The Signal,” directed by Joseph Bennett, Charles Huettner, 2023, (MAX)

For Azi, she worked on getting a distressed signal heard and working with a robot named Levi to farm and make food. Kamen, well, he just tried to hide away, maybe waiting for death to show up and take him out. However, when it comes to Sam and Ursula, alongside trying to bring the Demeter down from space to awaken the cargo (people) and use the escape shuttle, they were playing adventurers.

Ursula, who has a knack for botany, was taking note of the flora, the animals, the landscape, and while Sam was the leader in space, Ursula was showing herself as the potential leader for the next generation.

But with Vesta not a planet filled with docile animals and plant life, survival for everyone is a constant challenge, and the likelihood of getting to some place called home lessened by the day.

Discussion Items

Let us know your thoughts in the comments:

  1. What was your favorite animal or plant?
  2. Which character do you wish you got to learn more about?

Episode Listing

Series Page | Series Character Guide


Our Rating: Positive (Watch This)

Notable Performances, Moments, or Episodes

The World Building

One of the undeniable highlights of the entire series thus far is the world that is built. This isn’t just a show with trees, flowers, and animals that look something similar to our own. There is creativity throughout the entire planet of Vesta to the point that it would make you wish Ursula’s book on plants and animals was available online so you could know the proper name and attributes of the things we see on this show.

For truly, as someone who isn’t into the military-styled sci-fi genre, getting to see people like Sam, Ursula, and Azi just traverse various landscapes, encounter different flora and animals, and sometimes get attacked? That is one of the consistent things that kept me coming back, and not because I wanted to see whether they would survive, but because some, like Ursula, were as curious as me, and there is nothing better when watching a sci-fi or fantasy production than feeling stimulated beyond the visuals.

Episodes To Anticipate

Episode 3

At this point, you really come to appreciate the biodiversity on Vesta.

Episode 7

Kris (Pollyanna McIntosh)
“Kris (Pollyanna McIntosh),” Scavengers Reign, “The Cure,” directed by Jonathan Djob Nkondo, 2023, (MAX)

With the introduction of Kris, you get a human villain for the first time and a reminder that there are dangers beyond the plants and wildlife.


Consistent Quality

While I will admit, as someone who hates binge-watching, there are times when the second episode, of the block of three released, does sometimes feel like it dips in quality. However, the show seems to use the three episodes to have a three-act structure; once you understand that, you appreciate what it offers.

You get the high, the low, and the comeback that makes you want to check out what happens next, and see more of the world, see violent encounters, and get a sense of awe, especially via Sam and Ursula’s journey.

Sam and Ursula’s Journey

There were points in the series I wish it was just about Sam and Ursula’s journey. With Sam’s leadership skills and Ursula’s curiosity, they gave me almost everything I needed to the point Azi felt like a Black queer representative and also a necessary badass, and Kamen? That sniveling twerp who should have died but didn’t.

But, when it came to Sam and Ursula, because they didn’t stick to open fields, because they learned what certain plants and animals could do, whether have them float, be like face masks, or other uses, it is because of these two I truly fell in love with “Scavengers Reign” with everyone else going back and forth between bonus material to time fillers.

Low Points

The Emotional Impact Of When Characters Lives Are Threatened

“Levi,” Scavengers Reign, “The Fall,” directed by Diego Porral, 2023, (Max)

“Scavengers Reign” isn’t a character-driven show. You learn just enough to get a sense of who is who, and, thankfully, it doesn’t have a big cast. But, unfortunately, even with a small cast and so much time for characters to talk, the push is, these people know each other enough where they have no need to rehash things.

Now, does that feel realistic? Yes. But as a viewer watching characters nearly choke to death, get attacked, and more, it doesn’t make you worry about anyone’s survival when you lack an emotional connection. It’s unfortunate to see, but not something that will get you angry, talking to the screen, or anything like that.

On The Fence

While You Don’t Get To Learn Much About The Characters, You Can Get Interested

Though to be fair, this isn’t to say you don’t give a damn about anyone. Azi is a bit shy and, via their interaction with Kris, someone who can come off tougher than they are sometimes, but she does have potential. She is this queer woman, seemingly without a place to call home, stuck in life but drifting through space. It isn’t clear why, but you wanna know why.

Kamen, as shown through his girlfriend Fiona, has a whole life you only see bits and pieces of, but you can understand his motivation, his pain, his trauma, and grief. It doesn’t make you like him but allows you to feel something and see what he goes through as karma.

Ursula (Sunita Mani)
“Ursula (Sunita Mani),” Scavengers Reign, “The Signal,” directed by Joseph Bennett, Charles Huettner, 2023, (MAX)

And it goes on and on as you talk about Ursula and Sam. Sam mentions a girlfriend he broke up with, you see pictures in Ursula’s room, there is more to them than meets the eye, and you are pushed to want more throughout the first season. Which is a good and bad thing since you never get more but rarely are in the mindset of writing someone off.

Also Worth Mentioning

  • Renewal Status: Currently, HBO hasn’t renewed the show, but in an interview with Collider (Link), co-creator Joe Bennett has ideas for a season 2. Sadly, unlike broadcast shows where you could check out the ratings to get an idea of where the show stands, Max doesn’t release that for its productions. With that noted, though, it is within the top 3 series, ahead of “Last Week Tonight,” “Rap Sh!t” and “Our Flag Means Death,” which, I feel, have gotten far more marketing and notice than “Scavengers Reign.”

Who Is This For?

Those who love sci-fi adventures which lean more towards world building than character development, but not to the point of the characters just being guides or mediums.

What I Hope To See

Baby Levi
“Baby Levi,” Scavengers Reign | Season 1/ Episode 12 “The Reunion” | Directed by Vincent Tsui | 2023 | Max

I hope with the way the first season ended, we’ll get more of a sense of who everyone is when survival isn’t the sole thing they are thinking or worrying about. The first season didn’t cover the entire planet of Vesta, but enough to lay down a foundation. So I hope the second season lets us know the characters on the planet now.


If you like this show, we recommend:

  1. Annihilation

Check out our TV-Series page for our latest recaps, reviews, and recommendations.

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Scavengers Reign: Season 1


“Scavengers Reign” is, as of now, one of my favorite sci-fi productions ever. I’m talking up there with “The Fifth Element” in terms of creating a world that is enjoyable, and I would like to understand more about.

  • The World Building - 89%
  • Consistent Quality - 83%
  • Sam and Ursula's Journey - 84%
  • The Emotional Impact Of When Characters Lives Are Threatened - 65%
  • While You Don't Get To Learn Much About The Characters, You Can Get Interested - 77%


  • Sam and Ursula’s Journey
  • Consistent Quality


  • While You Don’t Get To Learn Much About The Characters, You Can Get Interested
  • The Emotional Impact Of When Characters Lives Are Threatened

One Comment

  1. Spot on review – this is great world-building without the usual soap opera.

    Almost all science fiction films and series now have the science fiction as a minor backdrop to the main business – emoting.

    Did there need to be so many genders though?
    Statistically, what are the odds of such a small cast having a representative of every possible gender/race combination?

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