For All Mankind is an alternate history sci-fi drama series created by Ronald D. Moore, Matt Wolpert and Ben Nedivi for Apple TV+. The show imagines an alternate timeline where the Soviet Union lands the first human on the moon in 1969, igniting the space race between the USSR and the United States.
For All Mankind has been renewed for a fourth season by Apple TV+, but an official release date has not been announced yet.
Season 1 premiered on November 1, 2019. Season 2 then arrived on February 19, 2021 after about a 16 month gap. Season 3 debuted on June 10, 2022, around 16 months after the premiere of season 2.
Based on these release patterns, we can predict that For All Mankind season 4 will likely be released sometime in mid to late 2023. Many speculate it will arrive in October 2023, around 16 months after the season 3 premiere.
However, an official release date announcement from Apple TV+ is still awaited. Production is slated to begin in 2022.
For All Mankind has a sprawling ensemble cast playing fictional NASA astronauts, engineers, administrators and their families.
Most of the main cast members are expected to return for season 4, including:
- Joel Kinnaman as Edward Baldwin
- Shantel VanSanten as Karen Baldwin
- Jodi Balfour as Ellen Wilson
- Sonya Walger as Molly Cobb
- Krys Marshall as Danielle Poole
- Cynthy Wu as Kelly Baldwin
- Casey Johnson as Danny Stevens
- Coral Peña as Aleida Rosales
- Wrenn Schmidt as Margo Madison
- Edi Gathegi as Dev Ayesa
New characters will likely be introduced as well, as the timeline moves closer to the 2000s. The Soviet characters could see expanded roles this season.
Some cast members may portray younger versions of their characters in flashbacks. The show has employed de-aging visual effects for past seasons.
Details about the plot of For All Mankind season 4 are being kept under wraps by Apple TV+. However, we can expect the new season to pick up where season 3 left off.
Season 3 Recap:
The third season jumped ahead to the 1990s, where Mars had become the new space race frontier. Danny made the first footprints on Mars, escalating tensions between the US and USSR. Karen led the first expedition to Mars, while Ed dealt with health issues back on Earth. Margo and NASA clashed over militarizing space. Kelly graduated from astronaut training and found a new romantic partner in Aleida.
What to expect in season 4
Showrunner Ron Moore has revealed that season 4 will take a significant time jump, moving the action closer to the 2000s rather than the 90s.
“We have mapped it out — we’re jumping more time,” Moore said. “We’re going into the 2000s next year for Season 4.”
This time jump will allow the show to explore an alternate version of the 2000s space race and the growth of the public internet. How will tech giants like Google and Apple emerge in this reality? How will NASA operate in the 2000s?
With the action moving into the 21st century, expect sociopolitical events like 9/11 and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to play out differently, influenced by the escalated space race.
Key plot points may include:
- New international missions and settlements on Mars
- The militarization of the moon and other planetary bodies
- First manned mission to the moons of Jupiter
- Colonization of space influencing culture and geopolitics on Earth
- Advent of commercial space tourism
- Moon base becoming more populated and developed
- Artificial intelligence and robotics playing bigger roles
Ellen’s career will likely take center stage as she moves up NASA’s ranks. Ed and Karen may grapple with new family dynamics on Earth. Margo and NASA will continue to spar over policy. Danielle, Aleida and their fellow astronauts will embark on daring new missions in deep space.
The Soviets expanded their presence greatly in season 3 – we’ll see how their goals create conflict and push technological innovation. Characters like astronaut Larisa Kuznetsova emerged as leaders, and could play bigger parts going forward.
New characters – future analogues of SpaceX and Blue Origin executives? – may enter the scene as private companies start taking over space travel amidst budget cuts.
Romance and relationship drama will continue between Kelly and Aleida, and other characters back on Earth. Parent-child relationships will evolve as the Baldwin kids grow older.
Apple TV+ has not released a trailer yet for For All Mankind season 4. A teaser trailer will likely be launched 1-2 months before the season 4 premiere date.
The season 3 trailer arrived about a month before its June 2022 premiere. Based on that timeline, we can expect the first footage from season 4 in September 2023 if the show returns next October.
The trailer will highlight the time jump to the early 2000s and tease the new space missions and political conflicts. It will showcase visual effects depicting how the alternate reality has advanced technologically and culturally since the 90s.
Once Apple TV+ drops the official season 4 trailer, it’ll offer the best sense of what tone and storylines to expect in the new episodes.
Why Fans Are Excited
Here are some of the biggest reasons fans are eagerly awaiting For All Mankind season 4:
- The time jump to the 2000s – This opens up lots of new story potential that moves the show into a new era. How will the 2000s look in this reality?
- New technological milestones – Season 4 can highlight exciting breakthroughs like colonizing Mars, nuclear-powered spacecraft, commercial space tourism, and more.
- High production values – Each season has impressive cinematography and visual effects that make space feel alive. That high quality is expected to continue.
- Strong acting – The ensemble cast, led by Joel Kinnaman and Shantel VanSanten, delivers emotional, powerful performances.
- Dramatic stakes – Relationships will evolve. New global conflicts and crises will ratchet up the drama.
- Fresh characters – New fictional astronauts, scientists, tycoons and politicians will enter the storyline, creating compelling dynamics.
- Sci-fi escapism – The series offers an immersive escape into an aspirational alternate reality vision of humanity’s space-faring future.
Seasons 1-3 Recap
Here’s a quick recap of the story so far across the previous three seasons of For All Mankind:
It’s 1969, and the Soviet Union beats the US to landing humans on the moon first. This fuels the ongoing space race between the superpowers. We follow fictional NASA astronauts like Ed Baldwin, Gordo Stevens and Molly Cobb amid these historic events. Their careers and personal lives are shaped by the intensifying competition with the Soviets in spaceflight.
It’s 1983, and the Cold War has heated up, with escalating action on Earth and the moon. The Soviets are first to put a permanent base on the moon. NASA and the US military ramp up missions in response. Ed goes back to space, while his wife Karen takes over mission control. Danny Stevens joins NASA amid family tragedy. Ellen Waverly advances in the astronaut program.
It’s 1994, and the focus has shifted to reaching Mars. Ellen spearheads a mission to the red planet, while the US and Soviets land crews for extended stays. Karen commands a Mars expedition, while Ed faces health issues back on Earth. Margo clashes with NASA leadership over militarizing space. A deadly disaster threatens the Mars program.
Why Apple TV+ Renewed It
For All Mankind has earned strong reviews from critics, especially for its acting, visuals and premise. While Apple doesn’t release viewership data, the show has developed a loyal fan following and buzz since its debut.
The third season wrapped up on a major cliffhanger with lots of storyline potential still unexplored. Renewing it for a fourth season allows Apple to continue getting value out of their investment in building expansive sets and high-end VFX.
The show has been successful at generating new subscriptions for Apple TV+ and keeping existing users engaged. It drives customers to pay for Apple’s streaming service to access the new seasons. That makes renewing it a good move for Apple.
For All Mankind stands out with its original alternate history concept and ability to credibly depict NASA-driven technologies. Season 4 can dive deeper into those creative opportunities as the timeline enters the 2000s.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions fans have about For All Mankind season 4:
Q: When will season 4 be released on Apple TV+?
A: No official release date has been set yet, but it’s predicted to premiere in October 2023 based on past release patterns.
Q: Who will be in the cast for season 4?
A: Most of the main cast like Joel Kinnaman, Shantel VanSanten, Jodi Balfour and others are expected to return. New cast members will likely join as well.
Q: How can I watch the first three seasons?
A: The previous seasons are available exclusively on Apple TV+. Subscribe to Apple TV+ through the Apple TV app or tv.apple.com.
Q: What is the show rated?
A: For All Mankind has a TV-MA rating for mature audiences. It contains language, violence and sex/nudity.
Q: Will season 4 be the final season?
A: No official announcement has been made yet about season 4 being the end. But the show may conclude with season 4 or 5 based on past comments.
Q: Where is the show filmed?
A: It films on locations and sound stages in Los Angeles, California.
With its thrilling blend of sci-fi spaceflight and gripping character drama, For All Mankind has carved out a unique storytelling niche. Season 4 has lots of creative opportunities to explore by catapulting the show into an alternate 2000s where technology has rapidly advanced thanks to the ongoing space race.
Fans are eager to see the new space missions, technological breakthroughs, global events, character arcs and interpersonal relationships that will unfold in the 10 new episodes. Until Apple TV+ makes the official announcement, viewers have about a year more of waiting before the fourth season finally lifts off. But it’s sure to be worth the patience, delivering another stellar vision of humanity realizing its full potential among the stars.