In Raised by Wolves, Ridley Scott's new HBO series, Mother and Father are androids tasked with raising human children on an unknown planet. However, they have their differences, and are actually two very different types of androids. Why is Mother so different from Father, and for what purpose?
By the end of episodes 1 and 2, "Raised by Wolves" and "Pentagram" respectively, Mother discovers that she has the power to kill with her eyes. She is a necromancer, a type of android designed by the Mithraic—a devoutly religious group on Earth—to fight and destroy all atheists. She was reprogrammed with a new directive to raise human children to be atheists building a society based on reason and science and to act as a mother to these children on the faraway planet of Kepler-22B. On the other hand, Father is sent for a similar purpose—to act as a father figure for the children—but he does not have nearly the power Mother does.
Interestingly, while a lot of time seems to have been put into programming Mother to be the way she is, Father is a simple service android. In Raised by Wolves episode 5, "Infected Memory", a flashback shows how Mother was captured by Campion Sturges, a known atheist hacker, and reprogrammed to carry out her mission on Kepler-22B. He slowly reintroduces emotions to her, and trains her to care deeply for human children. Interestingly, Sturges and Mother, as they spend a lot of time together in isolation, grow to care for each other. Then, when Sturges sends Mother on her mission, he provides her with Father more to keep Mother company than anything else. So, while Mother is a reprogrammed necromancer, Father is sent along to serve not only the children, but also to serve Mother.
Why Father Is Not A Necromance Like Mother
Campion Sturges, the atheist hacker, put a lot of time and effort into programming Mother to be the way she is, but seems to have included Father on the mission as an afterthought. It's clear Sturges is relying on Mother and her abilities to successfully raise the children on Kepler-22B, while Father is there to help out in small ways. It's as if Father was included simply because most human children have a mother and a father, rather than because he was necessary. Mother has the capability of bringing the human embryos to term, raising, and protecting the children entirely on her own.
Part of this has to do with Sturges's emotional attachment to Mother. He calls her his "greatest creation" when he sends her on her way, and chooses to archive her memory of him rather than delete it completely. He knows he is going to die on earth, and considers Mother to be his lasting legacy. He sends her out as humanity's last hope.
Another reason Mother is different from Father has to do with time. Sturges put all of his time into programming Mother for her mission; he couldn't possibly program Father in the same ways. Also, he only had access to one necromancer model, which all seem to be inherently feminine, perhaps because of some sort of Mithraic belief. Even as he was sending Mother on her way, he was struggling to breathe in his workshop on earth. It's clear he didn't have long before the planet became completely uninhabitable. As Mother and Father struggle to keep the children al