TV Show Review: Chernobyl

Hello again dear watchers, and welcome to another TV show review. This week I am going to take a look at Chernobyl, a 2019 HBO original that was both awe inspiring and dreadful at the same time.


I watched Chernobyl over a number of months, which didn’t affect my review in any way, other than maybe benefiting it.

I knew the general story of Chernobyl because of being a history nerd, or at least I thought I knew about it.

It only took one episode, but I quickly learned how much I didn’t know about the event. I sat there with a sense of anxiety in my chest that I had never felt before. Even though I knew things ended up fairly okay after the event, I was stressed and worried over what was happening.

Most “based off of a true story” shows or movies are good because you probably haven’t heard of the true story, so it’s all new to you. In Chernobyl’s case, it’s a true story that I had heard about, but the show still managed to make me feel stress and anxiety during some scenes that weren’t that stressful.

That was the biggest reason I kept watching the show (other than my internal need to finish anything I start).

Whoever wrote the scripts for Chernobyl, my hat goes off to you because you did a fantastic job.


There was one emotion that I never felt during any of the six episodes, and that was happiness.

There was not one moment in the show that I was happy something had happened, or didn’t happen, and I think that was intentional.

There was nothing happy about that event, and the show did a good job of making viewers feel anything but.

There was moments of relief, where a big threat was overcome, but I wasn’t happy about it per se, because there was so much more going on that was awful.

The whole season you just feel a sense of dread hanging over you because of the pain, suffering, and death that is happening around the characters.

People are sent into areas that should kill them in an instant, others are climbing onto rooftops, knowing they will likely die, and pilots fly over radiated smoke, all right before your eyes.


I think what makes part of the show so dreadful, but captivating, is that I didn’t quite understand what radiation could do to someone.

I knew it could be harmful, and cause countless forms of mutations, diseases, and who knows what other health problems, but I never really understood the scale or the science to it.

Reading articles and watching videos after the fact, I know that what the show portrayed is different than what actually happened.

People didn’t really turn into fleshy goop people, but that’s what people who were involved with Chernobyl perceived them to be.

It was a terrifying event that nobody had ever seen before, and to a lot of people, the worst thing they had ever experienced.


Overall, I loved the show, and there wasn’t a whole lot wrong with it. I could nit-pick about small things here and there, but my only real issue was that it was in English.

I didn’t want British actors who looked like they were Russian, I wanted Russians that were speaking the language. I wanted to read the subtitles, I wanted to be submerged into the story more fully.

I’m not sure if that would have made the show better, worse, or not changed anything, but I think that the story deserved it.


Did you enjoy Chernobyl? Have you seen it yet? If not I definitely recommend it. If you want to talk about it, hit me up in the comments or follow me on social media!
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