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Resident Alien is now a big hit on Netflix. Here’s why you should watch this underrated sci-fi show

Syfy's Resident Alien - Official Trailer (2021) Alan Tudyk

Original series are becoming an endangered species on Syfy, but Resident Alien has been one of the bright spots on the channel’s lineup since its debut in 2021. The show is based on the comic book of the same name by Peter Hogan and Steve Parkhouse, and it features Alan Tudyk as the lead character, an alien masquerading as a human doctor named Harry Vanderspeigle.

Although Resident Alien hasn’t yet achieved breakout status, that may soon change now that it’s among the most popular shows on Netflix. Since its arrival on Netflix earlier this month, Resident Alien has already reached No. 2 on the TV charts, and it may soon hit No. 1. But if you need an excuse to check out the show, we’re here to give you three reasons why you should watch Resident Alien on Netflix.

Alan Tudyk is hilarious as the title character

Alan Tudyk as Harry Vanderspeigle in Resident Alien.
Universal Content Productions

This series isn’t Tudyk’s first venture into sci-fi, or even his first time playing an alien. Although he’s best known for starring in Firefly and lending his voice to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Tudyk had a short-lived stint on the 2009 V reboot as a menacing alien invader. His role on Resident Alien, as the alien masquerading as Dr. Harry Vanderspeigle, harks back to his part on V in that both characters are enemies of humanity. The key difference is that Resident Alien lets Tudyk embrace his comedic side.

At the start of the show, Harry really is out to destroy humanity on behalf of his people, and he’s not above killing to do so. It’s a testament to Tudyk’s performance that this never gets in the way of enjoying the awkward and hilarious ways that Harry tries to blend in with the people of Patience, Colorado. He’s really terrible at just being a normal guy, and that’s what makes him so funny. Over time, Harry does feel more of a connection to humans, to the point where his original mission is no longer his goal.

Resident Alien has a strong supporting cast

The cast of Resident Alien.
Universal Content Productions

Even Tudyk’s great performance wouldn’t be able to hold this show together if the supporting cast wasn’t up to the challenge as well. While the relationships that Harry has with the townspeople are the key to the show, Resident Alien takes the time to establish Asta Twelvetrees (Sara Tomko) and D’arcy Bloom (Alice Wetterlund) as friends who have a long history with each other and the town that is completely independent of anything to do with Harry. Asta, in particular, has interesting family issues that make her an outsider, which is something that she bonds with Harry over.

Sheriff Mike Thompson (Corey Reynolds) doesn’t have a particularly strong relationship with Harry, but he correctly guesses that Harry is a murderer. He’s just completely off-base about Harry’s motivation and true nature. But the core relationship that Harry has is with Max (Judah Prehn), the only kid in town who can see through his human disguise. Harry’s initial response was to try to kill Max, but he’s actually come to care about him. Watching their bond develop has been one of the best parts of the show.

The ongoing story gives Resident Alien dramatic stakes

Alan Tudyk as Harry Vanderspeigle in Resident Alien.
Universal Content Productions

Although Resident Alien offers a lot of comedic scenes, it’s not a complete farce. There are stakes on the show, especially since Harry’s mission calls upon him to wipe out humanity. That didn’t go away just because Harry felt connections to the people of Providence. Because if Harry won’t complete his mission, there are other aliens who will … and they don’t seem to share his openness to humanity’s charms.

The ongoing threat of other aliens has given Resident Alien its narrative momentum through its current third season. And we’re hopeful that the show’s newfound popularity on Netflix can convince Syfy to keep the series going for another couple of years.

Watch Resident Alien on Netflix.

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Blair Marnell
Blair Marnell has been an entertainment journalist for over 15 years. His bylines have appeared in Wizard Magazine, Geek…
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