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.”
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!
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.”