1) Yes, I am an excellent information source. Thank you.
And the hits just keep on coming. More bad news in the form of gamma radiation being emitted from the remains of a Type 1a supernova.
The revised reveal of our ship from the gang at VFX:
Again, the challenge in scenes like these is to keep the pace up and all of our characters alive (in other words, involved either directly through dialogue or indirectly through cutaways). There’s a lot of ground to cover here but flashes of humor go a long way toward breaking up the exposition, something I learned from my occasional technobabble-filled days on Stargate. These beats, mainly involving our Android, go a long way toward humanizing her character, making her more sympathetic, and adding dimension to her seemingly straight-forward personality. I’ve noticed some people bumping on these seemingly emotional responses. At times, she is almost childlike in her reactions. “But she an Android! It doesn’t make sense!”. It doesn’t? Sort of like…
2) On the other hand, sometimes she makes a lot of sense. Good luck.
Why is she wearing a spacesuit? “But she an Android! It doesn’t make sense!”. Until, of course, it does. The Android volunteers to effects repairs by executing a perilous EVA. And THREE is only to happy/relieved to let her go. As far as he’s concerned, it’s nothing personal – because he doesn’t really see our Android as a sentient entity imbued with a personality. At best, a machine with a personality template, but certainly not some”thing” to worry about. On the surface, his attitude may seem cold but an argument can be made that he does have a point. But let’s table that debate for later…
3) That’s why I like her. She’s just like the rest of us.
Amid all the suspicion, the shipboard paranoia, and the overwhelming feeling of isolation, personal connections are made and it’s interesting to see who gravitates towards who and how these relationships evolve over time. One of my favorites – and one of my favorites to write – is the friendship between these two very different crew mates: the imposing, grounded, wizened SIX and the diminutive, impulsive, young FIVE. He plays the role of the protector, offering words of comfort here but, in the situations, it’s often FIVE who offers up the words of wisdom, in this instance when she says: “She’s just like us.”, which echoes her “Well, same with them maybe, right?” in episode 102 in which she drew a parallel between the Android’s “killbot” programming and the crew’s apparent past disposition toward violence. When you think about it, the Android IS just like them in many ways (the fact that they’re all starting over after having their memories wiped being the most obvious), but she’s ESPECIALLy like FIVE: well-intentioned and a key member of the crew, but immature in many ways and incredibly lonely. And, speaking of connections, the relationship between FIVE and the Android is another one of my favorites that develops over the course of this first season.
4) I sincerely hope you’re right. But if anything goes wrong out there, it will be your only chance.
The Android suits up and, despite the obvious dangers, elects to forge ahead and complete the crucial repairs – while FIVE and SIX look on back on the bridge. I really want to say more about this scene but, for time being, I’ll hold off. Just make a mental note – and then let’s come back it later in the season. Plink! That’s the sound of the penny dropping.
5) Too late.
The Android is successful – but ends up disabled by the electro-static charges. A little about this sequence, in pictures…
In order to reach the trench, the Android must walk down an extreme-angled wall, something easy enough to do in zero-g, but a little trickier to demonstrate in our Earth-based production environment. So this is what we did…
With 1st AD Grant Boyle supporting her, our stand-in walks down one angle section and up the next. The shot is a close-up of her booted feet:
I trimmed the head off the second shot and we were good to go!
P.S. The coupling housed within the section of the retractable section of the trench is a visual effects, compliments of our VFX team lead by Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson.
THREE makes FOUR another pitch and, this time, he’s a little more successful in having his would-be ally hear him out. Why? Because, from a purely logical standpoint, he makes sense. As TWO will later tell ONE: “We felt it was worth the risk to save the Android; they didn’t.”
7) Or now. We can talk about this now.
There’s nothing I like more than a good stand-off – and this is a great one. After THREE and FOUR seal themselves in the bridge with the intention of jumping to FTL, FIVE shorts the door console, allowing the rest of the crew access to the ship’s nerve center. The shots of ONE, TWO, and SIX walking in guns raised – and the complimentary shot of THREE and FOUR drawing on them – never fails spike the adrenaline every time I watch this act-ending sequence.
Hey! Check out these behind-the-scenes vids at SyFy.com featuring Marc Bendavid (ONE), stunt coordinator John Stead, VFX supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson, and production designer Ian Brock: