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Previews

Previewing Mrs. Davis 

Previewing Mrs. Davis

[Warning: General spoilers ahead.]

Artificial intelligence (AI) is everywhere right now, and ChatGPT is the newest shiny thing. Vast majorities of people are beholden to the Siris and Alexas of it all, but what if that AI was all-knowing (and depending on who you ask, that’s not an if as your ad placements suddenly align with something you swear you never said out loud or within earshot of a connected device). For the sake of argument, let’s say we’re not there yet. That’s the alternate present timeline where we find ourselves in Peacock’s delightfully off-kilter, wackadoodle new eight-episode series, Mrs. Davis.

Mrs. Davis

Betty Gilpin plays Sister Simone, a nun who’s part of a quiet convent of sisters in the Nevada desert content to make and sell jam and do the Lord’s work. But Simone has a separate calling, heading out at night to specifically thwart people setting out to do bad things. She’s also one of the few holdouts on the planet who hasn’t acquiesced to believing in the benevolent (or malevolent, take your pick) communal AI nicknamed Mrs. Davis that literally has everyone’s ear and is regularly referred to as “she,” a pronoun Simone immediately corrects to “it.”

Mrs. Davis

As she moves through the pilot, she finds out in increasingly menacing ways that Mrs. Davis really wants to talk to her, setting in motion a Final Destination-type chain reaction of events (minus the murder) that makes it harder to decline the invitation. When she’s just about gotten herself out of one potentially nefarious scenario, a would-be helper arrives.

Mrs. Davis

Jake McDorman plays Wiley, a loose cannon cowboy-type who’s part of the anti-AI resistance, and who knew Simone back when she was Lizzie. Long ago childhood friends who begrudgingly still find each other in their lives, the duo are an odd couple to the extreme. And then there’s Jay (Andy McQueen), Simone’s confidant, a cafe owner who makes a mean falafel and really wants her to stand down on the whole Mrs. Davis thing.

Mrs. Davis

The other piece of the story is that Simone is given the seemingly impossible quest of finding the Holy Grail, which she’s intrigued enough to pursue because the reward offered for her success will be the thing she thinks she most wants in the world. And thankfully Wiley’s just the wingman she needs, whether she wants his help or not.

The tone is a very heightened reality, sometimes straightforward drama, sometimes absurd comedy. You have to buy all the way in that there will be shenanigans. It made me think both of the old school G vs. E (IYKYK) with some of the ridiculousness of Killing Eve. And randomly enough, I kept thinking of The Blues Brothers mantra, “We’re on a mission from God.” Giplin is terrific, setting Simone to a perpetual frequency of, “I really don’t have time for this sh-t.”

Mrs. Davis

I liked it a lot, but I will 100% tell you that it’s one of those shows you have to be in the right mood for. If you’re not feeling it out of the gate, take a break and come back to it, because it is super enjoyable when you’re open to its bananas storytelling. Also, full disclosure, it’s a very smartypants show, so if you’re up on your theology, you’ll do better than me at debating some of the the thornier whosiwhatsits.

Mrs. Davis

Series creator Tara Hernandez (The Big Bang Theory, Young Sheldon) is the showrunner and head writer alongside fellow executive producer and writer Damon Lindelof (Lost, Watchmen, The Leftovers). The cast is rounded out with a fantastic ensemble, including Ben Chaplin, Margo Martindale, David Arquette, Elizabeth Marvel, Katja Herbers, Chris Diamantopoulos, Ashley Romans, Tom Wlaschiha, and Mathilde Ollivier.

Mrs. Davis premieres its first four episodes at 3:01 am ET on Thursday, April 20th on Peacock, with new episodes airing every Thursday. Here’s a sneak peek.

Photos courtesy of Sophie Kohler/Peacock; video courtesy of Peacock.

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