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07th Jun 2019

Russia is remaking Chernobyl with the Americans as the bad guys

Wil Jones

Because of course they are

HBO’s Chernobyl has been arguably the biggest TV hit of 2019 so far – while the Game of Thrones swansong got, well, a mixed reaction, response to the miniseries about the infamous nuclear disaster has received an almost universally positive reaction.

The show has not gone down well with the Russia media though, according to The Moscow Times, one newspaper described it as “a caricature and not the truth,” while prominent news anchorStanislav Natanzon commented, “The only things missing are the bears and accordions!”

In response, a Russian TV network is making their own series about the Chernobyl disaster to portray a different take on events. According to The Moscow Times, the NTV show will be based on the premise that “the CIA sent an agent to the Chernobyl zone to carry out acts of sabotage.”

“One theory holds that Americans had infiltrated the Chernobyl nuclear power plant,” the film’s director Alexei Muradov is quoted as saying, “And many historians do not deny that, on the day of the explosion, an agent of the enemy’s intelligence services was present at the station.”

In the West at least, the response to Chernobyl has been overwhelmingly positive, with the show becoming the top-rated TV series on IMDB after just three episodes.

The show has also revived interest in the incident, which happened in April 1986 – Chernobyl (the place) has seen a spike in people wanting to visit the Ukrainian city.

The series concluded this week – but if you want to know more about the real-life incident that inspired the show, writer Craig Mazin recently shared a big list of documentaries and books used as research for the show.