ON THE GRID
Primeval’s Andrew Lee Potts buddies up with a revolutionary AI in web series Wireless
ever tried to strike up a conversation with Siri? Then you’ll know that artificial intelligence has a long way to go before the inevitable robot uprising. Web series Wireless has an evolutionary premise: what if a computer wasn’t just whip smart, but could feel?
“It’s interesting but it’s scary as well because the whole idea of making [Unit White] feel emotion was – if you feel, theoretically you can love. And if you can love, you can hate and then it gets dangerous,” Potts says. “We’ve got a lot to explore with that.” As well as directing, editing, colour grading and buying the sandwiches (one of those may not be true) Potts stars as Jacob Crow – a loose cannon cop back on the beat after a six-month suspension who gets partnered with chatty AI Unit White. “They’re testing it to see whether it would be a useful cop on the streets and it’s about them surviving the day.”
Potts originally developed Wireless as a traditional TV show with writer Alex Moss, but opted for the web series route to ensure their creation made it to the screen intact. This meant some changes: Unit White transformed from a robot into an AI (with the voice of Primeval’s Lucy Brown) which can transfer to any wireless-enabled device, and the first six episodes are set almost entirely in Jacob’s car.
“We always knew that halfway through we were going to jump out of the car, but I wanted to solidify that relationship in a trapped environment,” Potts explains. “I also wanted to surprise the audience who thought it was just going to be a cop in his car, because it’s not.
“The big question is why on earth they’ve picked Jacob Crow. There is a reason for that which will transpire as the season goes on.”
The first six episodes of Wireless are available to watch for free at wirelessweb.london.
Jacob Crow is a cop with an AI partner… but why have they chosen him?