Writing in 2014, James Poniewozik (Time) reviews the first season of HBO’s excellent series, The Leftovers

file_118510_0_theleftoversartBy the standards of fictional global disasters, The Leftovers’ is a teensy one, just a smidgen of apocalypse. Two percent of the world’s population is gone–not dead, but vanished one Oct. 14 in what is being called the Sudden Departure. It sounds like the Christian Rapture, but it’s utterly random. It takes babies and adults; Christians, Buddhists and atheists; the devout and the drug dealer; plus Gary Busey and the entire former cast of Perfect Strangers. All told, 140 million people are gone, enough that some families are unscathed but no one is untouched. It’s enough to leave the species intact but heartsick; to leave society functioning but rudderless; to leave humanity standing but to kick the legs from under every existing belief system. (more…)