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Altered Carbon season 2: Release date, cast, reviews and everything we know

Anthony Mackie in Altered Carbon Season 2
(Image credit: Diyah Pera/Netflix)

New sleeve who dis? Altered Carbon season 2 hits Netflix soon with a new lead, new story and new mystery. 

The sci-fi drama centers on the character Takeshi Kovacs, a soldier-turned-investigator in the year 2384. Humans have developed the technology to transfer their consciousness into new bodies. 

In season 1, Joel Kinnaman played Kovacs, but in Altered Carbon season 2, the role is taken over by Avengers star Anthony Mackie (aka the future Captain America and the star of the Disney Plus' upcoming Marvel series Falcon and the Winter Soldier). 

Here’s everything we know about Altered Carbon season 2 including its release date, cast, plot, and more.

Altered Carbon season 2 release date: When is it coming out? 

Altered Carbon season 2 will premiere Thursday, February 27 on Netflix. 

Is there an Altered Carbon season 2 trailer? 

Yes, there is an Altered Carbon season 2 trailer. Watch it below: 

Altered Carbon season 2 cast: Who’s in it? 

As we mentioned above, Anthony Mackie is taking over the the lead role of Takeshi Kovacs. Don't feel too bad for first season star Joel Kinnamon, who's busy with Apple TV Plus' For All Mankind and the reboot/sequel The Suicide Squad.

We’ll also see the original Kovacs again, as played by Will Yun Lee, likely in flashbacks. 

Also returning are Renee Elise Goldsberry as Kovacs’ long-lost love Quellcrist Falconer and Chris Conner as the AI hotel owner Poe.

Notable season 1 cast members who will not be back include James Purefoy as wealthy mogul Laurens Bancroft and Dichen Lachman as Kovacs’ sister Reileen Kawahara. However, either character could return, of course, since they can be re-sleeved into new bodies.

“It's a producer's wet dream because of none of us have to appear in the next season," Purefoy told reporters at a press event. "Our characters may appear, but our bodies can be left in the unemployment line."

Altered Carbon season 2 is adding several new cast members, including:

  • Simone Missick as expert bounty hunter Trepp
  • Dina Shihabi as Dig 301, an out-of-work A.I. programmed to assist human archeologists
  • James Saito as centuries-old Yakuza boss Tanaseda Hideki, who controls organized crime on Harlan’s World
  • Lela Loren as Danica Harlan, the charming and ambitious governor of Harlan’s World
  • Torben Liebrecht  as Colonel Ivan Carrera, the dogged leader of a Protectorate Special Forces unit known as the Wedge

Watch Netflix’s cast announcement video: 

Altered Carbon season 2 episodes: How many are there and what are their titles? 

Altered Carbon season 2 will consist of eight episodes, which are titled:

  • Episode 201: “Phantom Lady”
  • Episode 202: Payment Deferred”
  • Episode 203: “Nightmare Alley”
  • Episode 204: “Shadow of a Doubt”
  • Episode 205: “I Wake Up Screaming”
  • Episode 206: “Bury Me Dead”
  • Episode 207: “Experiment Perilous”
  • Episode 208: “Broken Angels"

Altered Carbon season 2 plot: What to expect 

Altered Carbon season 2 jumps forward in time and begins 30 years after the events of season 1. Takeshi Kovacs has been re-sleeved, his consciousness put into a new body (as played by Anthony Mackie) which comes with some upgrades: rapid healing and enhanced reaction time.

According to Netflix, in season 2, Kovacs continues his centuries-old quest to find long-lost love Quellcrist Falconer (Renée Elise Goldsberry), which takes him back to his home planet of Harlan’s World. Kovacs is also investigating a series of brutal murders and is stunned to discover that they are tied to his quest to find Quell. Kovacs must rely on the help of the AI Poe as well as new allies to discover the truth: Who is Quellcrist Falconer?

Season 2 may delve into questions about transgender and gender fluidity, via its body-swapping paradigm. 

As show creator Laeta Kalogridis told The Wrap, “LGBTQ, and so many issues and the ways in which we feel comfortable or uncomfortable in our physical bodies, are things that I think the show is very right to explore, but has not yet been able to do. Certainly first season. We touched on it a little bit – but not much."

Altered Carbon season 2 reviews

Here's what critics are saying about Altered Carbon season 2:

Collider

"The ideas behind the premise are so good, the potential to examine existential issues about identity and humanity and how they’re tied up in our physical form are so great, that it’s frustrating to see how often the show takes a too-shallow approach." - Liz Shannon Miller

IGN

"Anthony Mackie has a very different interpretation of Takeshi Kovacs than Season 1's Joel Kinnaman, however, that doesn't make it any less of an impactful performance. " - David Griffin

Ars Technica

"The good news is that S2 is much more tightly focused, zipping along at a faster pace, in part because we're now quite familiar with this world." - Jennifer Ouellette

Polygon

The writers "refined the worldbuilding from the show’s first season, polishing out some of its rougher edges, and continuing to deliver a surprisingly philosophical plot beneath the heaping portions of stylish hyper-violence and casual nudity." - Samantha Nelson

TV Fanatic

"The visuals continue to be of the best on TV, so if you're on this ride for the thrills that the expansive world has on display, then you will not be disappointed. " - Paul Dailly