Back in 2019, Netflix audiences were caught by surprise by the streaming giant’s original show Love, Death & Robots, an animated anthology series delivering a multitude of unrelated stories from different genres, each with a different style of animation.
The show, created by Tim Millerand produced by David Fincher, quickly garnered a passionate fanbase that fell in love with its variety of stories, styles, and aesthetics. It has a great score of 8.4 on IMDb, where users have shown their love for many of the series’ greatest episodes.
What Do You See? — S01E03: “The Witness”
Directed by Alberto Mielgo, one of the visual consultants behind the iconic look of Sony Animation’s magnum opus Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, “The Witness” sees a woman who has seen a brutal murder fleeing through the streets of a surreal city.
More than anything, IMDb users praise this short for the stunning animation, which is realistic but also incredibly stylish and vibrant. The whole episode is tense, hyperactive, and mind-boggling in the best way possible, all of which has earned it a rating of 7.8 on the site.
A Cynical Analysis of Humanity — S01E02: “Three Robots”
In the second episode of the first season of Love, Death & Robots, three robots embark on a sightseeing tour of a desolate Earth long after humanity’s demise.
“Three Robots” helps set the tone of the entire show with a dark and cerebral political message hidden under a guise of cynical and silly jokes. IMDb users, who gave the episode a great score of 7.9, mention its delightful use of humor, thought-provoking narrative, and great voice acting featuring the likes of Rick and Morty‘s Chris Parnell.
A Steampunk Version of Studio Ghibli — S01E08: “Good Hunting”
Borrowing a lot from Asian culture and animation, “Good Hunting” tells the story of how a boy forges a bond with a shapeshifting spirit after his father kills the spirit’s mother.
Fans, who gave this short an 8.0 on IMDb, have noted how different it feels from the rest of the show, both in terms of artstyle and of narrative. Somewhat reminiscent of a Studio Ghibli film, the episode has great world-building and characters, as well as fascinating spiritual themes.
Regret and Redemption in an Immoral World — S02E03: “Pop Squad”
In a future where the rich control resources, unregistered offspring are strictly outlawed. In this terrifying dystopia, a detective whose mission is enforcing population control has a crisis of conscience.
With a score of 8.1 on IMDb, the episode (directed by Jennifer Yuh Nelson, the filmmaker behind Kung Fu Panda 2and 3) is commended for the terrific way in which it establishes its absorbing dystopian future, as well as for the fascinating and incredibly mature character arc of its protagonist.
A Bad Acid Trip — S03E09: “Jibaro”
Perhaps the show’s trippiest, weirdest, and most unsettling episode yet, “Jibaro” shows a deaf knight and a mythical siren becoming entwined in a deadly dance. It’s not a coincidence that it is also directed by Alberto Mielgo.
Full of blood, death, and treasures, the finale of season 3 of the show is visually jaw-dropping and narratively staggering. The photorealistic animation, full of oversaturated colors, offers countless images that will be forever ingrained in your mind. Watching this short is a chilling journey which is sure to give you goosebumps more than once, as proved by its rating of 8.1 on IMDb.
Deep In the Forests of Siberia — S01E18: “The Secret War”
Its title may not be the most creative, but fans would argue that the finale of the show’s first season is one of its strongest. In it, an elite Red Army platoon faces a mysterious evil hiding in the ancient Siberian forests.
For starters, the episode’s animation is said to be some of the show’s most realistic without ever sacrificing style or attractiveness. Thrilling and full of great characters, the story is so compelling that many IMDb users complain that it’s not longer. For that, they gave it a respectable score of 8.1.
The Secrets of the Unbeaten — S01E01: “Sonnie’s Edge”
If “Three Robots” helps set the tone of the show, then “Sonnie’s Edge” helps show how great of an episode viewers can expect from that point onward. It shows Sonnie, who’s unbeatable in the underground world of “beastie” fights as long as she keeps her edge.
Fans on IMDb compare this short to a more edgy version of Pokemon, giving it an 8.2 for its quality. It’s a brutal revenge story which shows just how gruesome and dark the show can sometimes get, with thrilling action and stunning animation.
The Inescapable Call of Our Past — S01E14: “Zima Blue”
Perhaps the most philosophical episode of the entire show, “Zima Blue” has the renowned artist Zima tell a journalist about his mysterious past and rise to fame before revealing his last piece.
Apart from commending the episode’s distinctive visual style, IMDb users lauded the profound, moving, and thought-provoking narrative. In a mere 10 minutes, “Zima Blue” manages to touch on themes such as art, the soul, minimalism, and the sense of calling. It’s a jaw-dropping story that has earned the episode a fantastic score of 8.3.
Is a Beautiful Life Better Than an Ugly Truth? — S01E07: “Beyond the Aquila Rift”
One of the genres which Love, Death & Robots visits most often is sci-fi, and fans seem to believe that “Beyond the Aquila Rift” is the best of the show’s sci-fi stories. It’s an absorbing and deeply philosophical episode about a ship’s crew, who have awakened after traveling light years off course, struggling to discover how far from their original path they are.
Visually impressive and with really engaging world-building, the short asks the question of whether believing in a comforting lie is sometimes better than discovering a disqueting truth. It features fascinating characters, great themes, and a mind-blowing ending. Because of all of these great qualities, IMDb reviewers have given it a score of 8.5.
Release the Thanapod! — S03E02: “Bad Travelling”
This is the first episode of the show directed by David Fincher himself, and the payoff is massive. “Bad Travelling” is a nail-biting horror thriller about a ship’s crew member who strikes a potentially deadly deal with a bloodthirsty monster from the deep.
Featuring legendary voice talent like Troy Baker, Jason Flemyng, and Elodie Yung, the highest-rated episode of Love, Death & Robots on IMDb (with an admirable 8.7) is one full of complex characters and provocative moral dilemmas. It’s scary, it’s exciting, it’s emotional, and it features one of the show’s most enthralling protagonists. Without a doubt, it’s worthy of being considered the best episode of the entire show.
KEEP READING:‘Love, Death & Robots’ Volume 3 Episodes Ranked