“For All Mankind: A Complicated Alternate History Without the Depressing Boredom”

The first lunar landing by the Soviet Union in 1969, as imagined in For All Mankind.

For All Mankind recently concluded its fourth season on AppleTV+. This gripping series, with its exceptional writing and performances, plays out like a high-quality film. If you haven’t watched it yet, it’s definitely worth checking out. In fact, it should be compulsory viewing for social studies teachers across the country.

The show presents an alternate history scenario where the Soviet Union becomes the first nation to land on the moon, edging out the United States in 1969. This change sets off a chain of events that significantly impacts politics, social movements, science, and more. The intense competition between the two superpowers in space exploration becomes the central focus, capturing our attention. Notable consequences of this altered timeline include Ted Kennedy defeating Nixon in 1972, women making significant strides in the space program, and the early emergence of electric cars.