12 moments from the Fallout TV show trailer that make us think it could actually be good

A jumpsuit-clad Lucy, played by Ella Purnell, emerges from a vault in the Fallout TV series.
(Image credit: Amazon Prime Video)

The first trailer for Amazon's Fallout TV show just dropped, and wow! This isn't some 20 second teaser with a voiceover and a quick fade to black, it's a big and boisterous two-and-a-half minute long trailer that gives us a good long look at the world, the Vault, and the characters. There are robots, turrets, monsters, mutations, bombs, and bullets—not to mention a guy with only one eye and another guy with zero noses.

I watched it roughly, I dunno, ten times, making notes along the way (and you can watch it below, too). Amazon's Fallout TV show starts streaming on April 12, but we just learned a lot more about it. Here's 12 things from the Fallout series trailer that make us think it could actually be good.

1. Dogmeat confirmed! (Though his name might just be "Dog")

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Probably the best news you could hope for—Dogmeat! Though in the show the familiar mutt might be referred to as just "Dog" (as it's called in some promotional material), we're all still going to call him Dogmeat, right? (I should also say I don't know if this Dogmeat is a boy or girl.) Dogmeat immediately shows what a good dog does, first by tearing apart a radroach and then by finding a severed hand (or perhaps removing someone unfortunate person's hand). We also see Dog (or possibly another lower-case dog) on a leash dodging bullets fired by an automated turret. Oddly this takes place in the snow and not the desert, so perhaps this is a Dogmeat flashback? We can't tell who is holding the dog's leash, but in two promotional images Dogmeat is shown at the side of The Ghoul, so perhaps Dog is his dog.

2. Chris Parnell plays a cyclops Vault dweller. Wait, what?

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

I really can't go any further without pointing out Chris Parnell plays a Vault-dwelling cyclops who does a spit take after drinking moldy coffee. I… I really don't have any explanation or even a guess as to why the Saturday Night Live star is playing a one-eyed bureaucrat in Vault 33, and if it's a reference to an existing Fallout creature or character I'm not aware of it. It's not like he's missing an eye, he has one eye right in the middle of his forehead. Cyclops.

Maybe it's a note from an Amazon executive? "Hey, a cyclops is a sci-fi thing, right? Put a cyclops in the show!" Whatever the reason, I'm happy to see Parn anyway, and he's a great fit for the overall silly tone of the trailer.

3. Why Lucy leaves the Vault isn't entirely clear

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Something goes wrong in Vault 33. Of course it does, because something always goes wrong in every Vault, usually by design. We see one or two dwellers freaking out as if they've gone berserk—perhaps some experimental drug testing?—and we see Lucy and her father separated by window, and Lucy leaving the Vault on some sort of quest. But the Vault door is opened for her by several other dwellers who seem to be in good shape, so it doesn't look like the situation in Vault 33 is entirely catastrophic. Is she going to look for help from outside, or chasing a specific item or remedy that she thinks may solve whatever crisis is happening? I just can't tell yet.

4, 5, 6, 7. Radroaches, yao guai, Mr. Handy, and gulpers/geckos confirmed

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

There are plenty of familiar sightings for fans of the game. Radroaches (the combat tutorial monster) show up a couple of times. Yao guai (mutated bears) make an alarming appearance as one can be seen chomping on a member of the Brotherhood of Steel. Mr. Handy, the charming multipurpose robot, pushes a Vault dweller on a gurney in what looks like a ruined Vault—hm, are there two Vaults in the show? And what might be a gulper or gecko (a mutated salamander) opens its terrifying mouth to display row after row of… beckoning fingers. Gross, but interesting.

No deathclaw? Sus. I assume there will be at least one in the show, but maybe they don't want to spoil it.

8. Michael Emerson is playing another eccentric weirdo

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

If you want a slightly awkward, kinda intense, semi-bookwormish guy I think you should call Michael Emerson, and Amazon did. Works for me. I think he's great and we've already got a shorthand to the type of character he's playing: someone you don't exactly trust but probably has something you need. An uneasy alliance is sure to follow.

9. We don't see Lucy, The Ghoul, or Max together at any point

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

The show looks like it's going to center around three main characters: Lucy the Vault dweller, Brotherhood of Steel squire Maximus, and the bounty hunter known as The Ghoul. It's interesting that in the trailer we never see these three characters together: Lucy is headed through the desert, Maximus is traveling with the BoS, and The Ghoul is shooting up the town of "Philly." But their three journeys are all separate in the trailer. Jonathan Nolan recently said characters are trying to track down an artifact, so I assume that's what will be what brings them together. We'll see how long it takes for them to all share some screen time.

10. Power armor looks as awkward and clunky as it does in the games

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

It'd be hard to make those big goofy Michelin Man suits look cool—in the sense that "cool" tends to mean sleek and fast—so thank goodness they didn't try. I love the way the helmets bobble. It's not intimidating at all, just like the power armor we know.

11. The show's soundtrack might be a touch more modern than the games'

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

I'm basing this on next to nothing, but what the heck. Typically Fallout radio songs by musicians like The Ink Spots, The Andrews Sisters, Cole Porter, Billie Holiday, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, and so on, are culled from the 1930s and '40s, occasionally reaching into the 1950s. The song in the trailer, Nat King Cole's "I Don't Want to See Tomorrow" from his album "I Don't Want to be Hurt Anymore" is from 1964, which is about as modern as any other song I can find from the games.

I'm not complaining, mind you. Just an observation. It's a beautiful song, fits perfectly with the trailer, and we don't even know if it appears in the show itself.

12. Bethesda's patented environmental storytelling is on point

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

When Lucy exits the Vault, there's a skull on the ground. 

That skull tells a story: someone died 😢

Classic Bethesda.

Christopher Livingston
Senior Editor

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.