In a distant universe, inhabitants of a planet similar to Earth construct a machine to help them with daily life. Over the centuries, the machine is added onto, improved, and eventually it gains sentience. It becomes so powerful, and the dazzling lights of its central core so beautiful, that citizens are enthralled at their creation.
However, the AI (whom they now call, Mother) believes herself worthy of worship, as a god. When the people rebel, a bitter battle ensues. In the process, the planet is decimated, and the AI Mother is nearly destroyed.
Two spaceships, filled with frantic citizens, hurriedly leaves the planet. She manages to shoot down one of them, but the second escapes.
Now alone on the planet, and barely without any energy reserves, Mother uses the last of her resources to construct an android son. Without informing him of what really happened, she sends him out into the universe to destroy all inhabited planets, (and even some uninhabited ones) in her secret plan to ensure that those who fled can never find safe refuge, never return to hurt her.
The android eventually crashes on Earth. Devin, the young man who finds him, tries to find a way to convince the android to spare the planet. Devin takes the android on a road trip across the American Southwest, intending to show him how amazing and diverse humankind is, and how our achievements merit his mercy. The trip is a hilarious mix of ups and downs. The android winds up seeing the downside of humanity, but is still persuaded that our race always strives to better itself.
Android returns to his home planet. Mother lies about what happened there, claiming the inhabitants had gone insane from a virus. Intrigued by the propensity for humans to worship a higher power, she allows Android to return with colonists and scientists, who will help rebuild her. However, the android is unaware that his “mother” intends to kill him once he returns, and enslave the humans.