Monday, November 23, 2009

"Defying Gravity": What we won't get to see

I've been a huge fan of the international collaboration show DEFYING GRAVITY since its very first (of 13...) episodes, and I really didn't mind people calling it "Grey's Anatomy in space" - it was character driver science-fiction, or soft-core sci-fi as I like to call it, as opposed to heavier genre shows like "Stargate". Plus it had a warm and charismatic cast, but above all I got the sense that the show's creator James D. Parriott knew where it was all going, as opposed to "Lost" where one of the exec producers admitted after season one they were no farther then 4 episodes ahead - which means they had no clear plan and made it up as they went...

Problem with the show wasn't quality -which it had in spades- but marketing; ABC bought the show from its producers a mere 3 weeks before airing it, thus leaving no time or space to promote it on their network, and no favourable time slot either, so unnoticed it went to the Friday night "death slot". Fast forward to about 8 episodes later, ABC yanks it off, and the producers just lost their major market. Show's dead and never got a chance to conclude in any way. Here in Canada we did get to see the final 5 episodes, but no clear answers were provided to the legions of questions planted throughout.

In late October, shortly after ABC's pulling of it, Parriott had a sit down with the folks of Clique Clack TV where he graciously revealed what he had worked out for at least 3 full seasons of the show. The interview can be found HERE, but for clicklessness' sake here's a brief breakdown of his revelations.

Nadia - As many had guessed with her hallucinations of a man who strangely resembled her, Nadia was born a hermaphrodite who's parents had made the gender choice for her age 11. The visions were of what she could've been had she chosen for herself. All those DNA changes Beta brings on the crew? They would've slowly reverted Nadia back to a more male-like state, and have her revisit the choice made for her by others in order to make it herself.

Donner and Zoe –  Donner’s reversed vasectomy was also part of the DNA change brought upon by Beta. Eventually, toward the very end of the series, the true reason for that happening would be revealed, when Zoe becomes pregnant again on the trip. So yes, even Zoe’s hysterectomy would be “reversed” in order for that to happen. The idea, for all of them, is to have Beta confront them with choices they made that changed their lives forever, and have them decide if they,d make the same choice again.

Wass — Wass was going to have something like Pervasive Developmental Disorder [like Autism] and have a great fear of people touching him and having contact with other people. He was going to become a weirder guy. He didn't have hallucinations simply because none could be worked out properly for him. He would've had them eventually, though.

Arnel Poe —People guessed pretty early on that it’s Arnel’s leg loss that gets Zoe back into the program. At the beginning of the second season, she was going to be at home, with a job teaching college,  have another romance. She's washed her hands of the whole thing which drives Donner nuts. Then Arnel would lose his leg during survival training, and Zoe would be called back.”

Jen — Jen's "challenge" from Beta is to face her fear of abandonment, as hinted with the isolation tank episode. Season two would have her driven farther apart form the others, and brought on the brink when the rabbit she "created" wreaks havoc on the ship and has to be put down. 

Eve — Eve would discover that her flashback of Ted on Mars is a flashforward - Ted has the word Antares on his helmet. By season 3 the crew would be back and preparing for the final pick-up, Mars, and Eve would have to go along.

Rollie — Rollie violates the gag order and goes to jail for running over the cyclist. He'd be released to prepare a resupply mission on Mars with Eve.

Goss — Goss would not be the bad guy in the end. Goss would find out that he’s been being duped a little bit, and that it’s bigger than all of them.

Beta and the other “fractal objects” —Their true nature was never going to be revealed, but left for the audience to debate and decide.

Other reveals:
  • They would eventually get all of the fractal objects during the course of the show.
  • Arnel, Trevor, Ajay and Claire would have been behind the “true” mission being revealed to the world, eventually. The three would be forced to work with Trevor in a sort-of underground initiative and ally with him when they see that he’s right in that something larger is being hidden. We would find out that Goss is hiding a larger agenda, and then there’s an even larger agenda that even Goss is unaware of.
  • The state of the world — the planet Earth itself — would have been revealed. Budget was insufficient to do it initially, with most of it going to the ship, but by season three we'd get a glance a future-earth, and in Parriott's own word, "it's a fucked-up place".
  • There was discussions of having the crew find Sharon and Walker alive on Mars, having managed to survive on the base-shelter built for the original mission.
(Thanks to jjadziadax for the heads-up)

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