The Nevers is an American science fiction drama television series created by Joss Whedon for HBO. The series is produced by HBO and Mutant Enemy Productions with executive producers including Whedon, Philippa Goslett, Doug Petrie, Jane Espenson, Ilene S. Landress, and Bernadette Caulfield. The series premiered on April 11, 2021. The first season consists of 12 episodes, split into two six-episode parts. In December 2022, the series was canceled before the back six had aired and pulled from the HBO Max library on December 18, 2022. All 12 episodes began streaming on Tubi starting February 13, 2023.
The series is set in Victorian London and follows a group of people, mostly women, known as the Touched, who suddenly manifest abnormal abilities. Among them are Amalia True, a mysterious and quick-fisted widow, and her best friend Penance Adair, a brilliant inventor. The series received a straight-to-series order from HBO in June 2018, after a bidding war with other networks and streaming services including Netflix. Laura Donnelly was the first actress to join the series in April 2019, with the rest of the cast joining in July 2019.
- Laura Donnelly as Zephyr Alexis Navine / Amalia True: One of The Touched, with the ability to see glimpses of the future. The most irresponsible, spontaneous, and psychologically broken hero of 19th-century London, and a danger to the British elite. She is dedicated to her cause and never turns down a drink.
- Claudia Black portrays Zephyr in a previous body in the episode “True”.
- Ann Skelly as Penance Adair: Amalia’s best friend, and a Touched with the power of ‘seeing’ electrical energy patterns and a skill for inventing. She is both religious and heretically progressive.
- Olivia Williams as Lavinia Bidlow: A rich supporter of the Touched, and patron of the Orphanage where many of the main characters live.
- James Norton as Hugo Swann: An aristocratic pansexual young man, who owns a private club and specializes in extortion.
- Tom Riley as Augustus “Augie” Bidlow: A kind gentleman bird watcher, Lavinia’s brother and secretly one of the Touched.
- Pip Torrens as Lord Gilbert Massen: A former military man and strong supporter of the British Empire, and very skeptical regarding people with extraordinary powers.
- Denis O’Hare as Dr. Edmund Hague: A brutal American surgeon who is experimenting on the Touched.
- Rochelle Neil as Annie Carbey, aka Bonfire Annie: A criminal with the ability to generate balls of flame.
- Amy Manson as Maladie / Sarah: An unstable member of The Touched living underground. Originally known as Sarah, Maladie is not only in charge of a band of renegades, but is on a killing spree. Maladie also disguises herself as Effie Boyle, a deceased journalist. Manson is credited with the pseudonym Margaret Tuttle when Effie appears.
- Zackary Momoh as Doctor Horatio Cousens: A West Indian physician. Amalia was there when he discovered his own power to heal. He collaborates with her, and the Beggar King.
- Eleanor Tomlinson as Mary Brighton: A failed singer who has a big surprise ahead of her.
- Nick Frost as Declan Orrun, aka The Beggar King: Charismatic and brutal, Declan is in command of London’s low-level criminals. Sometimes he works with Amalia and her cause – and sometimes he is just as happy to sell them out.
- Elizabeth Berrington as Lucy Best: A former thief from an extremely poor upbringing who can shatter whatever she touches.
- Viola Prettejohn as Myrtle Haplisch: An omniglot who can understand any spoken language although her own words come out in randomly shifting languages that she cannot control.
- Anna Devlin as Primrose Chattoway: A sixteen-year-old girl who is ten feet tall.
- Kiran Sonia Sawar as Harriet Kaur: A Scottish Sikh who lives at the orphanage; her breath turns things into glass. She dreams of being a lawyer.
- Ben Chaplin as Inspector Frank Mundi: A large and gruff policeman with a strong sense of morals. He has a reputation for violence and heavy drinking.
- Ella Smith as Desirée Blodgett: A prostitute who causes others around her to pour out secrets when they are feeling strong emotions.
- Vinnie Heaven as Nimble Jack: A young thief and member of the Touched who is notorious for breaking and entering and is capable of creating floating disks that can be used as shields or as stepping stones for accessing high places.
On July 13, 2018, it was announced that HBO had given the production a straight-to-series order. Joss Whedon would serve as a writer, director, executive producer and showrunner for the series. The series landed at HBO after a bidding war with other networks and streaming services including Netflix. Whedon explained the title at Comic-Con 2018:
They, themselves are not called that [The Nevers] in the show. It’s a phrase that’s meant to evoke a sort of reaction to their oddity, to what is considered unnatural. The idea that you should never be like this, you should never have existed. Something is not the way it should be, and you don’t have the right to have whatever weird power or ability that you have. And 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. Certain things could never happen – they’re happening. And the people they’re happening to are taking their place in the world.
April 11, 2021
- E01 – “Pilot”
- E02 – “Exposure”
- E03 – “Ignition”
- E04 – “Undertaking”
- E05 – “Hanged”
- E06 – “True”
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