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The Nevers: Everything You Need To Know About The Upcoming Series

Listen, no one would deny that 2020 has been a year of disappointments as far as film and TV are concerned. The COVID-19 pandemic canceled some of our favorite shows, and delayed hotly anticipated movies again and again. But it's not all doom and gloom, and the new year is bringing with it some projects worth getting hyped over.

2021 was already going to be an exciting year for HBO thanks to the wildly anticipated release of Zack Snyder's Justice League, AKA the Snyder Cut, and the fact that Warner Bros made the controversial decision to launch their entire slate of movies for the year directly onto HBO Max. There's also another huge project on the way.

The Nevers is a new original series created by Joss Whedon, which promises to give fans of his sci-fi and fantasy TV projects like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly a fresh world to fall in love with. Set in Victorian era London, the series is about the struggles of a group of people called the Touched, who have developed special abilities that put them at odds with the strict society of the era.

That is just a tease of what this exciting new project has to offer. Here's everything else we know about the series so far, including when to expect it to premiere, who is in the cast, and the status of Whedon's involvement in the project.

The Nevers is set to premiere sooner than you may expect

News of The Nevers first dropped in 2018, when Deadline reported that the Whedon created show was being given a series order. Since then, we've thankfully gotten a better idea of exactly when we can expect the show to premiere.

In November 2020, another Deadline article reported the series is slated to premiere in summer 2021. Since then, there haven't been any major updates, as to an actual release date or a trailer (hopefully sooner rather than later on that one), which may have made some a little nervous that COVID-19 could be causing the series to get kicked down the proverbial road. That's understandable, given the state of things, but the series was later teased on a sizzle reel promoting HBO's 2021 lineup of new and returning series, so audiences shouldn't be too worried.

We won't know for sure until HBO confirms a release date, however, it feels safe to say that we'll be tuning into The Nevers sometime during the summer of 2021.

The Nevers will feature a talented ensemble cast

There have been a lot of exciting announcements in regards to the cast of The Nevers, since the show was first teased back in 2018. Starting at the top, the series secured Laura Donnelly, a celebrated Northern Irish stage actor and co-star of shows like Outlander and The Fall, to star as Victorian renegade (and notorious drunk) Amalia True. While Donnelly is described as the star of the series, she will be joined by an impressive ensemble cast, the character breakdowns for which were published by Entertainment Weekly.

Olivia Williams, one of the stars of Whedon's Dollhouse, is slated to play Lavinia Bidlow, who runs an orphanage for the Touched with the occasional aid of her brother, Augie Bidlow, played by Da Vinci's Demons star Tom Riley. Augie's ne'er-do-well friend, Hugo Swann, will be played by James Norton of Happy Valley, while two of Lavinia's closest allies, the West Indian Dr. Horatio Cousens and the criminal mastermind the Beggar King aka Declan Orrun, will be played by Zackary Momoh of Doctor Sleep and Nick Frost of Shaun of the Dead, respectively.

Other actors include Ben Chaplin, Ann Skelly, Rochelle Neil, and Amy Manson, as well as Pip Torrens as the formidable Lord Massen. Rounding out the cast is the ever reliable Denis O'Hare, most recently of American Horror Story and This Is Us, who will play the menacing Dr. Edmund Hague.

What we know so far about the plot of The Nevers

So, how does this distinct set of characters converge in the world of The Nevers? The series has yet to lay out a specific plot other than HBO's tease that the show is about "a gang of Victorian women who find themselves with unusual abilities, relentless enemies, and a mission that might change the world" (via The Hollywood Reporter). But we can piece together some more information from what we know about the characters and the premise of the series.

Based on the character descriptions, it would appear that Amalia True is one of the leaders of a gang of the Touched, or people who have gained special powers. Meanwhile, Lavinia Bidlow appears to be a protector figure — think Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The existence of characters like Lord Massen — an aristocrat who is described in Entertainment Weekly as seeing the Touched as a threat to order — as well as the "cold" and "brutal" Dr. Hague imply that the enemies which the Touched will be taking on come from the upper echelons of proper Victorian society. Meanwhile, their allies, such as the Beggar King, appear to be those who live on the fringes.

Whedon elaborated on this during a 2018 interview with IGN, where he explained, "that idea, that some people are not of the natural order, is fascinating to me. I don't agree with it. But to me, it's one of those things where you take something negative, and you wear it as a badge of honor, basically."

It sounds like the show is shaping up to follow that initial idea, despite the fact that Whedon has since walked away from the project.

The show will (literally) go on without Joss Whedon

In November 2020, news dropped that Whedon, the creator and showrunner of The Nevers, was leaving the project before it even premiered. As reported by Variety, HBO released a short statement confirming his exit. Whedon, meanwhile, said of walking away from the series, "I realize that the level of commitment required moving forward, combined with the physical challenges of making such a huge show during a global pandemic, is more than I can handle without the work beginning to suffer."

Whedon has been at the center of controversy recently, after Justice League star Ray Fisher accused the director of "gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable" behavior during reshoots of that movie, prompting an investigation by WarnerMedia. In December, that investigation apparently concluded and resulted in "remedial action."

At this time of writing, there has been no indication that Whedon's exit from The Nevers is related to that investigation. Either way, the show is set to go on without him. 

You can check out The Nevers on HBO in summer 2021.