Though NBC’s upcoming Game of Silence revolves around one central mystery, its freshman run will offer resolution — while also setting the stage for any possible second season.
Adapted by executive producer David Hudgins from the Turkish series Suskunlar, Game of Silence stars David Lyons (Revolution) as Jackson Brooks, a rising star attorney whose perfect life is at risk of being upended when two childhood pals, Gil and Shawn (played by Once Upon a Time‘s Michael Raymond-James and Rescue Me‘s Larenz Tate), resurface with a powder keg of a problem that threatens to dredge back up a very tragic part of their past. Bre Blair (Make It or Break It) co-stars as Jessie, married Jackson’s onetime crush.
By the end of its yet-to-be-scheduled 10-episode Season 1, “You get a result and you get a payoff,” Hudgins affirmed on Wednesday at the Television Critics Association winter press tour, “but it’s also an ending that people will find shocking and enjoyable… open[ing] up the world to a whole other level.”
Or as Raymond-James put it, “Those answers that [viewers] get this season lead to new questions.”
To differentiate Game of Silence from its source material as well as give it extra legs, Hudgins added “a whole level of conspiracy” involving the former warden and guards of the juvenile detention facility where Jackson and his friends served a literally torturous, abuse-laden nine-month sentence for a prank-gone-very wrong.
Also, to complement flashbacks that chronicle the lead characters’ long-ago ordeal, Hudgins also introduced a third, more recent timeline that injects an added twist and tension to the current-day events, as Jackson struggles to manage the crisis dropped at his feet by Gil and Shawn.
Though Jackson’s priorities don’t immediately sync up with that of his onetime friends, the fact is that what they went through as kids has forged a connection that no amount of selfish self-protection can supersede.
“‘Friends are relatives that you choose for yourself,’ and that trauma that happened [created] a bond that will forever hold them together,” Raymond-James said. He then added, “There is friction” upon their reunion as adults, “but it’s all in trying to move forward and pick up the pieces, collectively.”
Picking up these pieces, however, may be far, far easier said than done. Said exec producer/CSI vet Carol Mendelsohn, “That question of ‘Does the punishment fit the crime?’ and ‘Can you ever give a younger person back their innocence?… It permeates everything.”