For All Mankind is officially back for season 5 — and there’s a spin-off on the way

Masha Mashkova and Joel Kinnaman in For All Mankind season 4
(Image credit: Apple Studios)

For All Mankind is one of the best shows available to watch on Apple TV Plus, and is the one show guaranteed to make me renew my subscription. If you’re like me you’ll be pleased to hear that Apple has renewed the show for a fifth season, as well as green-lighting a spin-off called Star City.

For those uninitiated, this is an alternate history series co-created by Ronald D Moore of Star Trek and Battlestar Galactica fame. It looks at a world after the Soviet Union landed on the moon ahead of the United States, and not to be outdone the U.S. government and NASA started investing heavily into space exploration. So the space race never ended, leading to a world that is remarkably different to the one we know.

The show debuted way back on November 1 2019, the same day Apple TV Plus launched, and recently concluded its fourth season. Needless to say, news of a fifth season renewal is rather exciting. Not just because the show is fantastic in every way, but also because the ever-advancing timeline is slowly catching up with the present day. 

Anyone that’s seen season 4 will also know that it gave us our first real glimpse into the goings on behind the Iron Curtain and what life in the alternate, post Millennium, Soviet Union is like. But life in 2003 is going to be very different to life in 1969, no matter what system of economics you're living under. But it sounds like we may get to see that in the new Star City spin-off.

The new series has been described as a “propulsive, paranoid thriller that takes us back to the key moment in the alt-history retelling of the space race — when the Soviet Union became the first nation to put a man on the moon. But this time, we explore the story from behind the Iron Curtain, showing the lives of the cosmonauts, the engineers and the intelligence officers embedded among them in the Soviet space program, and the risks they all took to propel humanity forward.”

In other words, it’s the story of For All Mankind told from the Soviet perspective rather than from the point of view of Americans. I never actually realized how much I wanted to see that story before reading that description, and I can’t wait to see how it pans out.

Spin-offs can be very hit or miss, but the concept sounds pretty interesting to me. It’s not like they’re developing the new show based around a specific character, but rather a different perspective on a story we already know. Considering that’s a big part of what makes alternate history stories great, it’s the perfect way to continue exploring that world.

It also gives the original cast to return without having to be plastered in old-person makeup. The less I see of old-man Ed Baldwin the happier I'll be.

There’s no word when the world of For All Mankind will return to Apple TV Plus. Typically there’s been a gap of around 14-15 months between each season. Since season 4 concluded in January, and assuming that trend continues, we’re looking at a Spring 2025 premiere. But that’s just a guess, and there’s no guarantee Apple and Sony will stick to that.  

So while we wait, be sure to check out the 5 best shows like For All Mankind to keep you occupied.

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Tom Pritchard
UK Phones Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.