Primetime Bioethics: Research Ethics Edition

 

CBHD often receives requests from educators and other individuals for popular resources that engage bioethics through various media (fiction, film, and television). In this resource, we offer a recap of materials relevant to research ethics that have premiered on television. Viewers are cautioned that the shows represent a wide variety of genres and may not be appropriate for all audiences. They are encouraged to read annotations/synopses available through such websites as www.movieweb.com or www.imdb.com. If there is a show you think we missed, email us at info@cbhd.org.

 

Research Ethics

  • 3% (2016–2020, TV-MA)
    • A post-apocalyptic thriller set in near-future Brazil, where a select few are allowed to join a privileged society after undergoing an intense and competitive process (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Disaster Ethics, Regenerative Medicine, Research Ethics)
  • The 100 (2014–2020, TV-14)
    • Set ninety-seven years after a nuclear war has destroyed civilization, when a spaceship housing humanity's lone survivors sends one hundred juvenile delinquents back to Earth, in hopes of possibly re-populating the planet (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Disaster Ethics, Genetic Engineering, Human Experimentation, Neuroethics, Research Ethics)
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013–2020, TV-PG)
    • The missions of the Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Artificial Intelligence, Cyborg, Genetic Engineering, Human Enhancement, Neuroethics, Personhood, Radical Life Extension, Research Ethics, Transhumanism/Posthumanism, Virtual Reality)
  • Ascension (2014, TV-MA)
    • A young woman's murder causes the subjects of a century-long mission to populate a new world to question the true nature of the project as they approach the point of no return (IMDB description)
    • (Topics: Consent, Eugenics, Population Control, Research Ethics)
  • Better Off Ted (2009–2010, TV-PG)
    • Comedy about a multinational corporation engaged in cutting-edge, and often over the edge, research.
    • (Topics: Biotechnology, Emerging Technology, Human Subjects Research, Research Ethics)
  • Between (2015–2016, TV-14)
    • After a mysterious disease kills every resident over 22 years old, survivors of a town must fend for themselves when the government quarantines them (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Bioterrorism, Disaster Ethics, Research Ethic)
  • Luke Cage (2016–2018, TV-MA)
    • When a sabotaged experiment gives him super strength and unbreakable skin, Luke Cage becomes a fugitive attempting to rebuild his life in Harlem and must soon confront his past and fight a battle for the heart of his city (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Human Enhancement, Research Ethics, Transhumanism)
  • Limitless (2015–2016, TV-14)
    • An average twenty-eight-year-old man who gains the ability to use the full extent of his brain's capabilities is hired by the F.B.I. as a consultant (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Cognitive Enhancement, Emerging Technology, Genetic Ethics, Human Enhancement, Neuroethics, Research Ethics, Transhumanism)
  • Nikita (2010–2013, TV-14)
    • A rogue assassin returns to take down the secret organization that trained her (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Biotechnology, Bioterrorism, Nanotechnology, Neuroethics, Research Ethics)
  • Orphan Black (2013–2017, TV-MA)
    • A streetwise hustler is pulled into a compelling conspiracy after witnessing the suicide of a girl who looks just like her (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Biotechnology, Designer Babies, Gene Patents, Genetic Engineering, Human Cloning, Human Enhancement, Regenerative Medicine, Research Ethics, Stem Cell Research, Transhumanism/Posthumanism)
  • The Expanse (2015–present, TV-14)
    • In the 24th century, a disparate band of antiheroes unravel a vast conspiracy that threatens the Solar System's fragile state of cold war (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Human Enhancement, Research Ethics, Transhumanism/Posthumanism)
  • The Hot Zone (2019, TV-14)
    • The frightening spread of the EVD (Ebolavirus) (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Disaster Ethics, Pandemics, Research Ethics)
  • The Rain (2018–2020, TV-MA)
    • After a brutal virus wipes out most of the population, two young siblings embark on a perilous search for safety (IMDB description).
    • (Topics: Bioterrorism, Disaster Ethics, Genetic Engineering, Pandemics, Research Ethics)

 

 

Updated Summer 2019