In Sci-Fi TV this week, TNT renews Falling Skies for a second season, Syfy premieres its new Monday night lineup, Robert Kirkman and Frank Darabont tease The Walking Dead season two and John Noble talks Fringe. All that plus much more, including the latest television ratings, and new images and video previews
GENRE TV NEWS
TNT renews Falling Skies for second season
TNT has renewed "Falling Skies" for a second season. The show’s second season will be 10 episodes, just like the first, and is slated to begin airing in summer 2012:
“Falling Skies is a true standout series, from its ambitious storytelling, high-profile cast and production team to its phenomenal success when it comes to international and time-shifted viewing,” said Michael Wright, executive vice president, head of programming for TNT, TBS and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). “We’re reaching new audiences with Falling Skies and look forward to seeing where this fascinating and exciting series takes us next.”
Ratings have been solid for the Steven Spielberg-produced series, averaging 4.72M viewers and a 1.6 A18-49 rating through three weeks (not including last night’s episode which ratings are not yet available for).
Syfy Tonight: Eureka and Warehouse 13 return + Alphas series premiere
Tonight is the series premiere of the new Syfy series "Alphas" (10 p.m.). Tonight also sees the return of "Eureka" for its season 4.5 premiere (8 p.m.) and "Warehouse 13" (9 p.m.) with its season 3 premiere. "Alphas" executive producer Ira Steven Behr spoke with Blastr about why he doesn’t look at "Alphas" as a superhero show:
"We don’t consider ourselves a superhero show by any means…We’re trying to take what’s already going on or what can already go on within the human brain and just up it a little bit more to extreme science. So I think that is interesting, the fact that the characters themselves are not exactly suited to the position that they’re in."
"This is a group of people who are not really your first choice to be an investigative unit or to be going out into the field and getting shot [at]," he added. "They are working for the government, but the government doesn’t totally know whether to trust them. They don’t know whether to trust the government. They’re working against this organization of Alphas called Red Flag, and Red Flag keeps telling them that they’re on the wrong side. And it’s a very precarious position to be in."
Collider, meanwhile, interviewed co-writer Zak Penn about the project. Here’s an excerpt from their extensive interview where Penn compares the show more to The Mentalist and The X-Files than other sci-fi superhero shows:
Collider: Alphas falls on the heels of things like Heroes, and other shows where ordinary people are in extraordinary circumstances, with superhuman abilities emerging. Were there any pitfalls that you saw from those other shows you really wanted to avoid?
PENN: Well, I really did try to start from a totally different paradigm. The show is probably closer to The Mentalist or The X-Files, in its pitch. That’s where we started from. And then, I got in some of the stuff I’ve always wanted to do in the superhero genre. I managed to find the real world equivalent of it. So, as opposed to Heroes, which is completely serialized, we purposely started from the totally other direction, in terms of what the show is actually like, in the same way that Law & Order is nothing like Heat. They’re two opposite ends of the genre. For me, I was less worried about that than I was about other procedural type shows that had some overlap with us. But, luckily, they all got canceled.
Read the rest of the interview with Penn here. And check out interviews with "Warehouse 13" star Aaron Ashmore and creator Jack Kenny at Blastr. In other news, Shazam has announced that Shazam for TV will be featured in the new series:
Following in the footsteps of Syfy’s “Being Human” – the first Shazamable TV series – each episode of “Alphas” will feature Shazamable moments, giving viewers access to exclusive content not available anywhere else, including sneak peeks of upcoming episodes, playlists from the show’s soundtrack and wallpaper for mobile phones. Each week the wallpaper will be refreshed with exclusive imagery from the week’s episode, while also providing fans with access to archived wallpaper content.
Check out the latest videos and images for all three shows below.
Promotional stills the series premiere [more at KSiteTV]
What is an Alpha? [Syfy]
Promotional stills for episode 4×12 – "Reprise" [more at SpoilerTV]
Sneak peek at Alicia Day’s character [YouTube]
Sneak peek [Syfy]
Sneak peek [Syfy]
Webisode 2 [YouTube]
Robert Kirkman and Frank Darabont talk The Walking Dead
The end of "The Walking Dead" season one featured the character Dr. Jenner whispering something to Rick Grimes. But what did he say? TV Guide presented two possible theories to comic book series creator Robert Kirkman:
THEORY NO. 1: Jenner said that Lori is pregnant.
THEORY NO. 2: Jenner told Rick that everyone is already infected.
"It’s possible that one is close. … Your theories are may be touching upon the larger piece of what [Jenner] said. … One of [the theories] said part of the main thing that he said."
In other news, Frank Darabont has confirmed that Michonne will be appearing in the show, but not until the third season:
"When she [appears], she’s gonna rock your world. I can officially tell you Michonne is coming in the third season."
Darabont also confirmed that discussions are underway with Stephen King and Joe Hill to co-write a season two episode.
Set images [more at SpoilerTV]
Robert Kirkman touring the season two set [YouTube]
John Noble expects Fringe to last five seasons
"Fringe" star John Noble told Digital Spy that he expects the Fox show to run for five years and would be surprised if it lasted beyond that point:
"When we first joined the show, [co-creator] JJ Abrams said that he thought it was a six-year show, but that’s like saying you’re going to climb Mount Everest," Noble told Allocine. "It’s very hard to even [get a show] on, let alone to do six years."
"Six [years] is a very long time," he said. "But if we don’t maintain the level of our production and our stories this [fourth] year, then there won’t [even] be another year."
Noble also talked about the difficulty in getting new viewers to the show:
"I don’t know why they’re saying that. We have a mythology now that needs to be unraveled a little bit for new viewers. I defy people to come in at the end of season three and understand—they might find it really interesting, but to understand it might be hard. So we need to unravel some of that mythology a bit, and I think that might be what they mean—give it a restart, from the same place, but for example without Peter or that intangible Peter [who seemingly ceased to exist at the end of the season finale], and we have to retell some of the story."
"Fringe" returns for season four on Friday, September 23.
Interview with Anna Torv [YouTube]
PREVIEW Videos & Images
Promotional stills for episodes 2×01-03 [more at Multipleverses]
Promo for episode 1×07 – "Night School" [YouTube]
Torchwood: Miracle Day
Promo for episode 4×02 – "Rendition" [Blogtor Who / YouTube]
Torchwood: Web of Lies
Episode 1 [YouTube]
The fourth season premiere of "True Blood" drew 5.42M viewres and a 3.0 A18-49 rating. That was just slightly below the series-high 5.44M viewers and 3.2 A18-49 rating notched for the penultimate episode of season three… [YourEntNow]
…However, episode two fell by almost half, drawing 2.90M viewers and a 1.5 A18-49 rating. One possible explanation for the huge decline? The show was available to HBO subscribers for a full week online via HBO Go.
"Torchwood: Miracle Day" premiered with 819,000 viewers and a 0.3 A18-49 rating Friday night on Starz… [TV by the Numbers]
…Check out an interview with star Mekhi Phifer discussing his character Rex Matheson at Digital Spy…
…And another interview with Phifer and fellow castmembers John Barrowman and Eve Myles at TV Guide.
Cartoon Network has announced that "ThunderCats" will premiere with a specila hour-long episode on Friday, July 29 at 8 p.m. [Cartoon Network]
NBC has set premiere dates for its fall 2011 schedule. The fifth and final season of "Chuck" will premiere on Friday, October 21. "Grimm" will also launch on the 21st, airing at 9 p.m. [NBC]
"Game of Thrones" writer/producers David Benioff and Dan Weiss tease that the second season of the hit HBO show will be "the season of the love story". [via Winter Is Coming]
"True Blood" – 4×07 – "Cold Grey Light of Dawn". [SpoilerTV]
"True Blood" – 4×08 – "Spellbound". [SpoilerTV]
"True Blood" – 4×09 – "Run". [SpoilerTV]
"True Blood" – 4×10 – "Burning Down the House". [SpoilerTV]
"Teen Wolf" – 1×07 – "Night School". [KSiteTV]
Dichen Lachman has joined the cast of Syfy’s "Being Human". [Syfy]
Dennis O’Hare revealed that his "True Blood" character Russell Edgington will return at the beginning of season 5. [Film School Rejects]
Producers of "Fringe" are currently looking for a new recurring Asian Female character for the upcoming fourth season premiere which begins filming on July 14. [SpoilerTV]
SCI-FI RATINGS (Based on final national numbers unless otherwise noted) [@TravisYanan]
CHART (6/13/2011 to 6/19/2011)
CHART (6/20/2011 to 6/26/2011)