This story may contain spoilers for the next 10 episodes of Syfy's 'Caprica.'
Fans who crowded into the large San Diego Comic-Con room to see what "Caprica" will be like when it returns early next year learned that executive producers Ronald D. Moore and David Eick are really looking for a massive crescendo in the next 10 episodes of the Syfy series.
The panel included new addition James Marsters as well as original cast members Sasha Roiz (Sam Adama), Alessandra Torresani (Zoe) and Magda Apanowicz (Lacy Rand). It started just days after Syfy announced the show would return in January to air the rest of its first season, but -- as previously reported by Airlock Alpha -- there was no announcement over whether or not there would be a second season.
Marsters, who many genre fans know as Spike in "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" as well as Capt. John Hart on "Torchwood" and Milton Fine/Brainiac on "Smallville," said his character of Barnabas puts him in a strange position of playing a religiously driven terrorist in today's climate of security and global relations. (See what else Marsters had to say about his time on "Caprica" by clicking here). He felt that his zealot character is driven to do things through a true belief, and he approached the role from the perspective of a Methodist minister, which his father was.
The enthusiasm didn't end there.
"'Caprica' is our life," Torresani told the crowd. The cast has bonded quickly as a family in Vancouver, British Columbia, where the series is filmed, which is a bit removed from Los Angeles and Hollywood. Torresani was enthused about the feeling of familial ties she shared with her cast.
Furthermore, with Eric Stoltz playing her father, Torresani pointed out that, in a strange way, Cher is her grandmother -- referring to Stoltz's 1985 film "Mask," where he played 16-year-old Rocky Dennis, who had a facial deformity.
But just like how Cher has always remained a strong female figure in Hollywood, the women of "Caprica" will see some strong development in the first season's second half. The older female roles in the show, Sister Clarice (Polly Walker)_ and Amanda Graystone (Paula Malcomson), become increasingly strong and powerful forces while the teenagers start to kick some ass.
"It's surprising how in-tune the writers are with 16-year-old girls," said Torresani.
Moore said that he likes casting women in non-traditional military roles, and in every series, found that placing strong females in any capacity led to other new and interesting female characterizations as well as deep thoughts and discourse about society itself.
That, of course, was an obvious comparison to Moore's reimagined "Battlestar Galactica," which "Caprica" was spun off from. However, Moore maintains that "Caprica" could be better compared to complex family dramas like "Dallas" rather than the former Syfy signature show. At the same time, "Battlestar Galactica" was more of a speculative post-9/11 world where everyone inside the World Trade Center towers survived and everyone else died, whereas "Caprica" is the world inside those towers leading up to a known endgame. That tension of knowing, Moore said, underlies all that they do in "Caprica."
Apanowicz said that when she first read about her character Lacy, she was very undefined. However, as the episodes progressed, the actress really embraced Lacy because she realized how much of her character was defined simply from her lack of definition, waiting for growth and formation -- which she finds in the upcoming episodes.
"Not to give anything away," Eick joked, "but Lacy starts calling herself Larry in the second half of the season."
Moore maintains that the storytelling integrity in "Caprica" is preserved because the last two seasons of BSG were written in such a way that "Caprica's" writers are not hemmed in by a set-in-stone history. He says that he always knew where BSG was going, although perhaps not how long it would run for, but that "Caprica" has a huge margin of time between where they are and the miniseries. Along that timeline, he can think of a half-dozen points where the series could end. The only mission that he and Eick had at the outset was to create a series that audiences could get involved in without ever watching BSG.
While the central theme still looks at the basis and qualities of humanity as a whole, Moore and Eick were able to reveal that Geminon would prove to be the most significant planet on the plot while the Tauron society will become more developed as the season rounds out.
"Caprica" returns in January on Syfy.
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