One of the few TV series ever to show the effects of an alien invasion returns this week, and fans of TNT’s Falling Skies should be ready for some major changes in season three.
The show has gone through showrunners at a rate that could rival The Walking Dead (with Battlestar Galactica alum David Eick the latest to take the helm), but producer Remi Aubuchon promises season three will build on the first two years and find the survivors asking how far they’re willing to go to win this war. Plus, they’ve set the third season seven months after the end of season two — meaning fans will spend part of the next 10 episodes trying to figure out exactly what they’ve missed (including the addition of a new alien to the team).
That journey is filtered largely through Noah Wyle’s Tom Mason, who is thrust into a new position among the human colony discovered at the end of season two. Here’s how Aubuchon explained it to TV Line:
“A lot of Season 3 is about taking action, and the theme that we’re actually playing with is ‘What price victory?’ In other words, how much are you willing to sacrifice? And since we follow Tom Mason, it’s really his dilemma. Here he is now, ‘the President of the New United States,’ whatever that means. He has decided to align himself with aliens [the Volm] who seem to have the technology and know-how to beat back [the Espheni]. But at the same time, his family is in a number of crises that he’s not really paying attention to. And his own moral compass is sorely tested also, because just out of revenge or whatever, he wants that final victory and seems to be using any way to get it.”
This season will apparently mark the first in which the 2nd Mass. isn’t on the move, and Wyle told The Hollywood Reporter that change presented its own share of challenges, to figure out how to keep the show compelling while the gang puts down roots in Charleston:
"That's a tricky one. In the first season, we occupied a high school for four or five episodes and when we watched those episodes I didn't feel it worked very well. I thought there was something that dissipates the tension when this group is not on the move and not being hunted. We're going to lose some of this threat that we wanted to be ever-present. Second season we were on the move, we had a destination to get too which gave us a great spine for the season: ‘We've got to make it to Grapes of Wrath California.’ Then we get to Charleston, it's not the Shangri-la we envisioned and we think about leaving and yet we don't so there's two ways of answering the question.
From a production standpoint, it's easier to have the group stationary because two or three days of the week we can go on the soundstage for the cover sets. It's harder dramatically to maintain this sense of threat being ever-present. The way we negotiate that is by acknowledging there is a base and we're going to leave it a lot. We're going to go out into the field on missions, we're going to try to make contact with other resistance groups but we always have a home to go back to. I thought that worked pretty well for us.”
The third season of Falling Skies debuts Sunday on TNT. Do you plan on joining the fight?