Falling Skies: Burning Questions Answered!

As TNT’s Falling Skies (Sundays at 10/9c) descended upon our TV screens last week, we quickly made the acquaintance of history prof-turned-resistance fighter Tom Mason (played by Noah Wyle), prickly Captain Weaver (Will Patton) and assertive Dr. Anne Glass (Moon Bloodgood). We also got some peeks at the extraterrestrial “skitters” and “mechs,” and briefly met opportunistic ex-con John Pope (Colin Cunningham) and Margaret (Sarah Carter), the plucky gal who’s as quick to betray you as she is to reload her weapon.

With all such pleasantries out of the way, it’s time to start asking some questions and seeing what’s what with this alien invasion. Here’s what TVLine was able to get cast members to share this early on in the game.

Is Pope Now a Part of the 2nd Mass.? | Yes, if only because, thanks to his time tending prison kitchens, he can work magic with meager means. “Sometimes you have to make deals with strange bedfellows,” says Noah Wyle, “and oftentimes you end up getting bitten for [it].” Especially when the stranger you’ve allowed within your ranks doesn’t exactly subscribe to your ersatz Constitution. As Wyle puts it, “The 2nd Massachusetts has a certain ethic about survival, and he represents a different ethos completely. A leopard can’t change his spots.”

Ask Ausiello: Scoop on Sarah Carter’s Falling Skies Character, and More!

What’s Weaver’s Deal? Did He Suffer His Own Loss During the Original Invasion? | “It’s safe to say that, yeah,” answers Will Patton. But the military man’s portrayer is keeping any details marked “classified.” “I’d like to keep most of his secrets in my pocket for now, because that’s what [Weaver himself] is about. But let’s just say that he’s got many different layers, and many secrets.”

Do We Sense Preexisting Tension Between Tom and His Oldest Son? | Hey, there’s nothing like rebelling against vicious ETs to rile a rebellious youth.”These kids have to now grow up at an advanced rate, and Hal probably symbolizes that more than anybody else,” says Wyle. “He’s on the brink of maturity and is anxious to cut the paternal tie…. He wants to be a man, be a fighter and stand on his two feet, and that drives that conflict.”

When Things Calm Down a Smidge, Will Tom and Anne… You Know, “Play Doctor”? | “Eventually,” says Moon Bloodgood, “and it’s very subtle. They’re more comrades than confidantes… but then something suddenly happens.”

And What About Dr. Harris (Guest Star Steven Weber)? Is He a Smooth Operator, Too? | Professionally, yes. Personally, he’s a mess. In addition to having a checkered past with Tom (you’ll get the grim deets on that soon enough), Bloodgood says Glass and Harris “just hate each other. He’s the obnoxious guy that we all get to project our anger onto.” Dude’s also very liberal with the booze I must assume is in short supply as well!

Can Falling Skies Fly Where Other Alien-Invasion Dramas Have Crashed? Noah Wyle Thinks So

How Do the Harnesses Work? And Do They Strictly Put the Kids in a Fugue State? | In this week’s episode, Dr. Harris begins experimenting in non-fatal harness removal, shedding light on how the alien apparatus “connects” with its host. As for their purpose, “It gets ratcheted up,” warns Wyle. “I don’t want to give too much away, but there comes a point in time where [the kids] are no longer used as a slave labor force and become used as a deterring force. That creates an ethical dilemma as to whether or not we’re going to shoot them.”

The Skitters and Mechs Don’t Seem Very Chatty. Will the Humans Ever Be Able to Communicate with Them (à la V‘s Visitors) and Hear Their Grievance? | “All I can say to that is some very smart guys thought all of this through,” Wyle answers. He then cryptically adds, “At the end of the season we leave these characters having to radically redefine what they thought was happening the entire time.”

What’s the Ultimate Purpose of the Ginormous Alien Structures? And Why Do the Mechs Have Two Legs Whereas the Skitters Have Many More? And Why are the Mechs So Hungry for Scrap Metal? | That Miley Cyrus-like flurry of burning Qs was where Wyle drew a line in the sand. “Those area all excellent clues to point out,” he said. “And I can’t say anything more than that.”

Comments (25)

  • Thanks for this Matt.
    I liked the premiere of Falling Skies. I hope this show sticks around for a while. It has excellent actors.

    Comment by Girish – June 24, 2011 09:49 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • You must have seen a different version. EVERYONE I know that saw the show said it was terrible. Poorly written and acted.

      Comment by John33907 – June 24, 2011 11:01 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I thought the first hour was pretty bad, but when Colin Cunningham came it it picked up a bit.
        I would say the problem is no many cliches and worn out alien story lines.
        Hopefully something will happen in episode 2, or I probably won’t see the entire season.

        Comment by Richard – June 24, 2011 02:15 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • who is everyone? I heard a few people complain that it was slow, and they tuned out but the majority of people I spoke to thought it was excellent – really smart, intense stuff. I guess for those who were expecting “battle la” or “Independence Day” it was a let down, but if you came looking for a smart, sci-fi drama it was pretty great, so far.

        Comment by albert bannon – June 24, 2011 04:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I liked, it, not sure what show you watched, but this was the one about aliens invading earth, not the reality show about people singing or dancing all day…

        Comment by Nick – June 25, 2011 09:53 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • @John33907: I agree the story was pretty derivative, but I thought the acting was great and its only aired the premiere. One cannot trash a tv show after just watching the premiere. Viewers have to give it at the very least 4 episodes to flesh out the story arcs and characters further. I based my opinion on the potential this show has.

      Comment by Girish – June 24, 2011 11:08 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Yes, Pope was interesting. But not interesting enough to make up for the rest of the boring cast. I won’t be watching episode 2 thru whatever episode it gets cancelled by.

    Comment by Alienate – June 24, 2011 10:02 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Not getting cancelled, but keep on hating. Guess your only satisfied watching shows about douches hooking up and singing all day.

      Comment by Jack – June 25, 2011 09:55 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • So, does everybody else share the theory that the mechs are in charge and the skitters are harnassed slaves just like the kids?

    Comment by gavin – June 24, 2011 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Probably the best theory. It seems obvious after looking at the pilot again and reading this interview that the humans are mistakenly fighting the wrong enemy. The skitters are probably a slave race from another planet conquered by the mechs and are harnessed or otherwise being controlled. The mechs sure are interested in scrap metal and have little interest in protecting the skitters. Must need that metal to keep making more mechs. I think the whole point of the talk about mechs being bipedal was to get you thinking not about why the skitters would build them that way, but that maybe someone else built them all together and the skitters are under their control. The skitters didn’t seem to be armed but it was hard to tell. The mechs are well armed. And we have no idea if there is something inside the mechs controlling them, like a little two legged alien.

      No matter what, I am not sure we have met the real alien bosses yet but I imagine it’s more likely the mechs and their higher ups.

      Comment by AJ – June 24, 2011 05:10 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • My theory…the kids are being turned into the mechs. When the humans discover kids inside the mechs they find it much harder to kill them. That’s why they have two legs.

      Comment by partisan – June 25, 2011 06:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Love this show right off…Great to hear Pope will be around.Wyle is always good and it is cool to see him play a different role…Pope and Tom has a Jack Sawyer from LOST kind of feel.

    Comment by NickC – June 24, 2011 11:25 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’m glad Pope will be around too. I’ve been a fan of Colin Cunningham’s since Stargate SG-1.

      Comment by Sue – June 24, 2011 01:14 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Am I the only person who thought of the Centurions on BSG when they saw/heard the mechs?

    Comment by Kaitlin – June 24, 2011 11:48 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • No, you’re not. I thought of them too.

      Comment by Sue – June 24, 2011 01:13 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • My guess was the mech’s are the kids after the harness takes over and they man them.

    Comment by T – June 24, 2011 12:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I enjoyed this a lot more than I thought I would, as I’ve most often been disappointed by these types of shows in the past. I agree that it’s derivative, as they clearly stole plot points from dozens of other sources. However, I will definitely keep watching, as I enjoy the characters and have a lot of questions I’m looking forward to getting answers for.

    Comment by Bella – June 24, 2011 12:45 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This show seems like an almost duplicate of Jericho except now we have aliens in place of government troops. Over the next few shows we will probably see more that duplicates and follows the Jericho storyline. Someone probably said “well Jericho almost made it – lets try again with aliens”.

    Comment by Terry – June 24, 2011 01:54 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I thought it reminded me of Jericho, too. And just like Jericho, as soon as I really start to get into the series, it’ll be canceled.

      Comment by Lori – June 25, 2011 04:32 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I think the second hour was better because you finally had an antagonist you could relate to. Hour one was just shooting skitters, hoping to find a grocery store they hadn’t emptied. I will credit the skitters for cleaning out the stores. It shows it’s not just some ignorant “War of the Worlds” deal, but there is a plan.

    I would love to see how everything began. If memory serves, it has been seven months since the arrival. And they already have these large organized militias? Forming an army from the ground up, including establishing command structures, would take longer than that. Was this something in place prior to “the arrival”? Perhaps ex-National Guard or militia?

    Comment by Bob – June 25, 2011 07:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I think the Third hour was better, because it was a different show. :)

      Comment by Alienate – June 25, 2011 10:10 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I loved this premiere (especially right on the heels of the much more confusing BBC America premiere of Outcasts) – Noah Wyle was great, and I LOVED his kids. I haven’t loved Moon Bloodgood in the other things I’ve seen her in, but I thought she fit really well into this. I can’t wait to find out more, and I REALLY hope this finds a home on TNT.

    Comment by Rachel – June 25, 2011 12:45 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Just finished watching episode 3 – it’s plodding along too slowly and I think they pretty much squandered the 40 something minutes. Needs to pick up pace, and quickly.

    Comment by Genghis – June 28, 2011 03:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Possibly the most boring piece of tripe Ive seen in ages.

    Comment by vince – June 28, 2011 04:09 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I think that this is a great show. I am hoping that it stays around for awhile. It is nice to have more science fiction entertainment again. I am one person that likes that kind of thing and I have been watching Alien movies since I was a kid and I will be watching them until I die. This is one of those shows that you either get it or you don’t. I like it and the actors and actresses that are in it is wonderful.

    Comment by Gidget – July 27, 2011 03:36 PM PDT  Reply To This Post

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