The first panel that kicked off WonderCon 2011 was TNT’s upcoming sci-fi alien invasion series “Falling Skies.” Executive produced by Steven Spielberg, the series stars Noah Wyle, Moon Bloodgood, Will Patton, and Drew Roy. It tells the tale of a former University professor who becomes the resistance leader against aliens who have invaded and conquered Earth. The panel made up of the executive producer Mark Verheiden, writer Melinda Hsu and actor Drew Roy who plays Hal in the show.
The first clip began with with some back story told by children recouting their stories of when aliens invaded and killed their parents and took children. They are drawing horrific images of their parents being killed. We hear Anne Glass (Moon Bloodgood) speaking to the children trying to comfort them by letting them know it’s okay to talk about it.
We then cut to Tom (Noah Wyle) and Hal (Drew Roy) running in the streets trying to avoid being detected by alien gunners. They seem to have been on a food run but was spotted and have since been running for their life. They find shelter in an abandoned store but bare witness to a man being killed and a woman being stunned/killed by an alien. We then get a chance to see the aliens which look like an arachnid with mandibles (Think ID4 aliens but with eight legs). Tom and Hal leaves the woman and retreats to a back alley where they run into more humans from camp. As they try to flee something blows up, cut, end scene.
The second clip shows Tom and a fellow resistance member at an alien prisoner camp where teenagers are being mind controlled by an alien spinal implant. They are made to sort through scrape metal and are in a zombie like state. The man with Tom spots his son and loses composure and begins to scream his name trying to wake him. Naturally, that’s when all things go to hell. Their cover is blown and they are spotted by aliens in slow moving but powerful mecha-suits. A gun fight breaks out and a plastic explosive was detonated killing one of the alien guards. While all things seem to be in the clear another alien on a roof spots them. Hal and Karen (Jessy Scharm) in a different position spots him and begins shooting it. It then jumps down from the roof and traps them in its cross hair.
The third clip features Hal and a female blond named Karen. They are taking refuge in someone’s house looking at their belongs and wondering who the little girl was that use to live there. They’re about to kiss but Tom barges in and interrupts them. He reminds Hal that something is coming up and he needs his help. He then asks if anyone else wants to volunteer and we hear people next door say that they do… unveiling how thin the walls are. Something definitely embarrassing for both Hal and Karen.
The final scene to be show shows Anne Glass who has a discussion with Tom while she is treating a patient. They joke and talk about what they once did and how their jobs now are better than what they use to do. It was a soft and tender moment before Tom tells her that it they’re going to regroup and get their revenge on the alien invaders.
Overall, all the footage was amazing in terms of visual effects. I’d even admit that it all exceeded my expectations and impressed me immensely for a low budgeted television series. While I can’t really comment on the plot or the story, “Falling Skies” is a show that should be on everyone’s radar come June 19th on TNT. I would have some reservations naturally, but for the CG and the Terminator resistance concept alone, “Falling Skies” might be something special.