ALMOST HUMAN at TCA: Live-Blog - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote


August 1, 2013 by  

Curious about the new Fox series, ALMOST HUMAN, from former FRINGE showrunner J.H. Wyman? The cast and producers are about to participate in a Television Critics Association panel, so follow along for what they have to say!

1:49 PM: “We pull our influences” from all sorts of sci-fi things, but not ALIEN NATION, Wyman says.

1:50 PM: “As an actor, you tend to draw on your human instincts and your background…the hardest thing about playing Dorian is to act like I don’t have that,” Michael Ealy says of his android character.

1:51 PM: “I think it’s such an incredible arena to tell stories about the human condition,” Wyman says of the current crop of sci-fi shows. “[Sci-fi] movies have always traditionally done really well,” he adds, but in television, they’ve always traditionally had a bit of trouble getting traction.

EP Naren Shankar says that there are a lot of fantasy shows on the air right now, but there aren’t a lot of shows like this.

1:53 PM: “We are sort of in the position of being able to be on the cutting edge of what’s on the screen,” Wyman says of the technology they have to create sci-fi shows. He says that knowledge went into the writing of the pilot, because he knew what was actually possible.

1:54 PM: Wyman says they talked with someone who works at MIT and whose study is “robot ethics.” One of the long arcs of the show is these androids who are living and aren’t simply something that can be tossed away.

1:57 PM: “I tend to reduce Dorian to…I make him childlike,” Ealy says. “His innocence in observing what’s around him…it’s something he’ll never have.”

1:58 PM: “For me personally, the better sci-fi is of course what humanity is about,” Wyman says. He notes that things in technology may be good and more convenient, but they might not actually be better for us.

1:59 PM: Lili Taylor compares her character’s relationship with Karl Urban’s John as brother-sister, whereas even though she’s his boss, she allows him room to do what he needs to get done.

2:00 PM: Wyman is explaining that the pilot many people saw wasn’t actually what’s going to air. Needless to say, John’s father is going to play a part in the series’ mythology.

2:03 PM: While ALMOST HUMAN is set in the future, they’re still dealing with a lot of things people in our age are. (Mortgages, etc.) “It’s just that in this slightly futuristic vision, society is dealing with difficulties and elements that are beyond the curve for us,” Urban says.

2:04 PM: “To understand my perspective on it, FRINGE we figured out was our key was the mythology…it was something and then it turned into something and it turned into something else,” Wyman says about whether this is a procedural. “This is a police drama. This is about brave people working on the front lines.”

That being said, there is an overarching theme to the show: “It wouldn’t be something I would conceive if it wasn’t a mythology.”

Shankar says he and Wyman have been swapping episodes of FRINGE and CSI to try and get this perfect balance down.

“I think what makes ALMOST HUMAN unique and original is that if you see the case on another cop show, we’re not going to do it,” Urban says. Thanks to the technology, “this stuff is coming,” Urban notes.

2:09 PM: “As smart as the cops get, as smart as the technology gets to keep our people safe” the bad guys get the same amount of tech to use against us, Wyman says.

2:10 PM: “It’s actually one of the most fun roles I had,” Ealy says. He was also concerned he wouldn’t be able to have a love interest. But the more he read the script, “the more I realized that’s actually a good thing. Don’t go that way you’ve gone before. Play something different. I’m having a ball, and working with this cast has been a lot of fun.”

Ealy says when he was a waiter, he could always tell when a couple had slept together before because if they had, the guy lost a bit of manners. He says this role now has given him a reminder to pay attention to how everyone is reacting with body language.

2:12 PM: “FRINGE obviously the fans kept it alive,” Wyman says when asked about the economics of sci-fi selling outside of the actual US network. “And the good taste of Kevin Reilly.”

2:14 PM: “We don’t want to make a future that is so far out,” Wyman says. There are things like a floating ball in the pilot that isn’t explained by Wyman knows what it is for the future.

2:15 PM: “Personally, I’m going to go on record and say that’s not going to happen,” Wyman says of robots having love lives.

“But Kennex can,” Urban interjects.

2:16 PM: “Basically what the backstory is is when crime becomes out of control and things get crazy and policemen are dying at a rate that is unacceptable…somebody somewhere said we’ve been working on this controversial thing and I think it’s time to pull the trigger,” Wyman on how these robots were first introduced. So public distrust wasn’t an issue, the hope was to make them as human as possible. The problem? The DRNs were a little too human. He goes into detail about how compassionate people can make mistakes, but unfeeling robots are black and white in terms of what’s right and wrong.

2:20 PM: “For me, personally, I like being in that place. I like being forced to think quick on your feet. It makes you more resourceful as an actor…I think you get more work for it as a result.” – Urban, on making the shift from movies to television.

“Look at these guys, I feel really blessed,” Urban says of the creative people in front and behind the camera on ALMOST HUMAN.

2:22 PM: Wyman says that while BSG was a good show, it’s not an influence on this show. “I’m writing about [how] I believe in hope; I believe we’re good,” Wyman says of why he’s writing this show. Robots turning on us is another kind of cautionary tale.

Filed under Almost Human


One Response to “ALMOST HUMAN at TCA: Live-Blog”

  1. Carley on September 30th, 2014 3:51 pm

    My partner and I stumbled over here from a different web address and thought I should check things out.
    I like what I see so now i’m following you. Look forward to looking at your web page repeatedly.