HBO’s latest show has done what was seemingly impossible and knocked David Attenborough off the television top spot.
Despite only being three episodes in, Chernobyl has already leapfrogged the likes of BBC’s Planet Earth II, Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad.
The five-part thriller follows the horrific story of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, where the nuclear power plant’s reactor core exploded, causing one of the worst man made disasters of all time.
The series already has a staggering score of 9.5 stars out of 10 on IMDB, topping the list that has long-been dominated by David Attenborough’s wildlife shows.
The synopsis reads: “On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine, Soviet Union suffered a massive explosion that released radioactive material across Belarus, Russia and Ukraine and as far as Scandinavia and western Europe.”
“Chernobyl dramatizes the story of the 1986 accident, one of the worst man-made catastrophes in history, and the sacrifices made to save Europe from the unimaginable disaster.”
Never seen before realistic portrayal of a man-made disaster, dramatized accordingly for creating a mega impact and upgrading the taste for TV Series, HBO's newest miniseries #Chernobyl shines like the brightest star in the entire galaxy. #ChernobylHBO is a riveting MASTERPIECE. pic.twitter.com/gnLOUVDI1w— Pallav Gogoi (@pallav_) May 23, 2019
HBO Chernobyl reminds me that while TV sometimes can be vanity, it can also be huge and impactful force. That's power of drama, theater, cinema and definitely gaming as well. It is up to artists to pick up stories that matter and resonate. And to remind us.— Peteris Krisjanis (@PeciskEN) May 23, 2019
The death toll from the disaster is still contested years later. There is a rough agreement that between 31 and 54 people died as a direct result of the blast trauma.
Casualties from the long-term effects are more of a grey area though – with estimates ranging from 4,000 to 93,000.
Chernobyl airs Tuesdays on Sky Atlantic and is available to stream on NOW TV.