This post contains spoilers for the June 2nd premiere of The Orville: New Horizons.
By now, most fans of The Orville have had the opportunity to watch the premiere of the renamed series, The Orville: New Horizons. If not, you’ll want to skip this post and come back when you’ve had a chance to watch it.
The series returned with a decidedly somber tone and covered a very serious topic—suicide. And while there was sadness and trauma dealing with Isaac’s decision to kill himself, his act brought some life-changing lessons to the forefront, things we might not even think about in the every day course of our lives.
Because Isaac was presumed to have no feelings, being that he’s an android, everyone assumed that his logical brain would never allow him to take his own life. But, to Isaac, when he was constantly being told he wasn’t wanted, it was logical to him to remove himself from the equation. Unfortunately, there are so many people in this world that seem unfeeling, like they have no heart at all. Yet, they hold everything inside, and they make the decision that the world would be better off without them. But it’s those people that really take everything to heart.
The Orville: New Horizons wasn’t done with the teaching moments.
After Isaac’s suicide, John LaMarr and his girlfriend, Irillia, a Dakeelian, have a conversation about it, and LaMarr learns that the Dakeeli have a different take on suicide. They accept that no one makes a choice to exist, and some believe they were grabbed out of the void and forced into being against their will. So life isn’t appealing to everyone, according to Irillia. And the Dakeeli believe it’s a personal decision whether or not they decide to live.
This is just one more way the series shows how two people can see the same thing yet see it differently. Like how Isaac saw the hate directed his way as an opportunity to “observe an intriguing facet of human comportment” he hadn’t previously encountered. And Captain Mercer responds with “hatred.” While Isaac saw the way people were treating him as a chance to learn, Mercer saw it for what it really was.
There were so many more truths to be gleaned from this episode, and the writers and producers did a fantastic job of taking a show meant for entertainment and providing important moments that can be used to help people grow and learn. While it isn’t the reason we watch the show, it’s an added benefit and makes this episode worth a rewatch.