It’s been over a year since THE Halo TV show premiered on Paramount+, but its bad taste is still in the back of my throat. I like to give things a chance before I stumble upon them, and I’ve watched the show, but it’s really a parody of the amazing storytelling in the Halo video games and novels. There was so much source material to work with, but the showrunners chose to take the shell of the story and fill it with unnecessary characters, stories, and dialogue.
It pains me that people are being exposed to this incredible franchise through this botched series. How could things have gone better? Here are six Halo stories that blow this Paramount+ time-wasting show out of the water. Maybe we’ll even see some of them appear in future seasons.
1. The origins of the Flood
Millennia before the events of the Halo games, a highly advanced race called the Precursors were the most dominant beings in the galaxy. They used their incredibly advanced technology to monitor the universe. The Precursors organized all life in the galaxy and chose humanity as their successors. Angered at not being named heirs, a group called the Forerunners wiped out the Forerunners in a genocidal war. However, not all Precursors were killed. A few of them used their shapeshifting abilities to turn themselves into dust and placed themselves in ships at the edge of known space.
This dust became “defective” over time, causing those who came into contact with it to develop an infection that mutated the host into an aggressive envelope. It was what eventually became known as the Flood, which was more than just a mindless zombie virus. a host spirit affected by the deluge is absorbed into a hive brain. The host’s genetic structure can be changed in seconds, with organic matter like bones and organs changing into whatever the flood sees fit.
Hosts were not only used for their intelligence, but also for their body mass. When enough hosts were brought to a location, the Flood could use the biomass to create a Gravemind, a massive conglomeration of hosts that could grow to gargantuan size.
A Gravemind is where all information from infected hosts is stored. Past memories of past Graveminds are part of this neural network, giving the Flood a kind of ancient super-intelligence. When the flood first happened, the infection grew so large that entire portions of the galaxy were absorbed, leading to several planet-sized Gravediggers. The Flood’s intelligence was so vast that it could even outsmart the AI using a strategy called the Logical Plague to make the AI work for the Flood’s ultimate goal of galactic domination. Once the galaxy is transformed into a giant flood hive, it then works to incorporate other galaxies.
Ancient space humans around 100,000 BCE were the first to discover Precursor Dust in abandoned ships in space. Centuries later, the hosts have become aggressive cannibals. Eventually, the flood began to infect dozens of human worlds, forcing the ancient humans to flee into Forerunner space. Taking this as an act of aggression, the Forerunners started a war with the humans, who now found themselves in a conflict on two fronts. When the Forerunners began to realize how dangerous the Flood was, the Parasite suddenly fled the galaxy. Thinking it strange that the human worlds were no longer infected, the Precursors mistakenly assumed that Mankind had found a cure and they were hiding it.
The Forerunners demanded the cure the Humans did not have, shattering the Human Empire for crimes it did not commit. Humans were banished to their homeworld, Earth, and became hunter-gatherers. Without humans as a buffer, the Forerunners were overwhelmed when the Flood returned in full force. Considering the timing of their return, it would seem that the Flood felt like the humans had a cure to pit its two enemies against each other. The Forerunners also still treated the Flood as a disease instead of an intelligent enemy, realizing too late that destroying infected planets was the only way to stop the spread.
Before the humans were wiped out, they found an ancient being held inside a Precursor stasis chamber on an abandoned planet. The creature, dubbed the Primordial, was brought to Earth where human scientists figured out how to communicate with it. The humans attempted to interrogate the being about the mysteries of the universe, but at first the answers from the Primordial were confused and unintelligible. However, when asked about the nature of the Flood, the answers he gave were clear and so horrifying that many who heard him committed suicide. After the Forerunners took over the planet, their leader The Didact spoke with the creature and deduced that it was both the last Precursor and the first Gravedigger.
The Primordial was then brought to Zeta Halo where it was imprisoned, the same Halo ring we see in Halo: Infinite. An advanced Forerunner AI called Mendicant Bias was assigned to interrogate the Primordial, but the pair disappeared with Zeta Halo for 43 years. During their time together, the Primordial explained to the AI the true nature of the Flood and how the Infection and the Precursors are one and the same. Beggar Bias was eventually infected with the Logic Blight and defected to the Flood. As the most powerful AI ever built, Mendicant Bias was tasked with leading the war effort against the Flood, but now he had effectively switched sides and given the Flood a huge advantage.
In an act of desperation, the Forerunners created another AI called Offensive Bias, which was just as powerful as Mendicant but lacked its counterpart’s creative thinking, making it resistant to logic blight. The Halo Network was also created to combat the parasite. The Halo Rings are massive weapons of mass destruction designed to annihilate all organic beings in the galaxy to starve the flood of food. Without any organic life to feed on, the Flood would starve. Running out of options to defeat the Flood, the Forerunners pulled the Halo Network and eradicated the galaxy of all life and the Flood. Prior to the firing, the Forerunners had collected countless samples of DNA and embryos from numerous species across the galaxy. Automated systems returned ships with each species to their respective homeworlds, effectively resetting life in the galaxy.