Defiance Episode 1.01 Pilot

Brief episode summary: The arrival of the mysterious Nolan and his charge Irisa to the town of Defiance marks a threat to the fragile peace that exists between the residents in the premiere of this futuristic drama, which is set in the year 2046, more than 30 years following a war between humans and aliens that left Earth forever changed.

From As the anniversary of the Pale Wars dawns, Amanda seems to be losing faith in her own abilities as the mayor of Defiance, a town that is home to the survivors of the war and the inhabitants of many species other than humans in the faraway future. The town is soon rocked by the arrival of travelling companions Irisa and Nolan, who need to make a quick buck. Out of town it appears the Volge and its forces have clocked Defiance; they plan to destroy it and its inhabitants in the aid of their own mystery agenda. The town must work together in times of need, but, it appears tensions are rising between the warring Tarr and McCawley families that could hinder this, especially so following the tragic death of Luke McCawley which Rafe seems to suspect Alek of committing at first. Rafe squares up to Alek, who claims to have done nothing wrong. It soon appears he’s telling the truth however things get heated, and the town’s peacekeeper ends up dead. Whilst Amanda tries to rally up support in these testing times, Irisa and Nolan soon gather the quick sum they came for through the use of the town’s Need Want, run by Amanda’s sister Kenya. The pair leave but Nolan appears to realize that they could make a difference to the town, and help defend against the impending attack. Irisa disagrees at first, reminding him that his last minute decision changes have cost them dearly in the past, but she makes a surprise appearance in the midst of the sphere-empowered battle, and after a long fight the battle is won and the town of Defiance is saved once more from being wiped off the map. How long the town will be safe for though appears to be uncertain.

Please use this thread to discuss the 2 hour series premier/pilot episode.

DVR’d it. I will be back.

I was expecting some kind of acknowledgement of the gem that Nolan made off with at the player’s expense (90,000 scrip) from the game but, it just wasn’t there that I saw. After the pilot, I’m inclined to stick with my initial anticipation that the game and the show won’t have many more links than the background setting. Unfortunately the game doesn’t (yet) have a real hub or city to anchor any kind of focal point against the show so, I not exactly sure where we’ll even see influences of one upon the other.

It wasn’t a bad start, I guess. Some of the beginning storylines were a bit standard fare but, it ended with a decent amount of intrigue. The last scene looked a bit like it was in some kind of train car so, hopefully, that can lend some kind of back-and-forth between the game (San Francisco) and the show (St. Louis) although I’m probably wrong. I wouldn’t think there was any surviving overland railway after the catastrophic terraforming.

The personalities are already coming on strong with some unexpected variety (Indogen mostly) which is a bit refreshing since the game lore left me thinking in stereotypes for the aliens. How much they might develop remains to be seen, of course. All in all, the jury is still out but the few nascent intrigues will have me looking forward to future shows.

EDIT: Actually there was a point where the mayor (Julie Benz) had mentioned conferring with Ara Shondu (a game character) in San Francisco about connecting a monorail.

My comments are on the previous thread posted before this one.


No disrespect meant, sir. I was just attempting to get episode-by-episode threads started. Your thread was labeled Defiance Series so I just left that as a TV series at large thread. We should probably start a Defiance Game thread as well. I’ll work on that. This IP is large and we’ll have to keep up with how to discuss and characterize it in its entirety and in its parts. Any suggestions will be welcome from my point of view!


I’ve just watched the pilot, quick question shooter, are we starting a general spoiler fre thread and a separate spoilerific one?

I’ll keep this reply spoiler free, I noticed (and this doesn’t seem to have been mentioned here) that one of the main shorunners is Rockanne O’Bannon (one of) the men behind Farscape and looking at the alines, and the cinematographic style, I would say it does remind me somewhat of Farscape, aditionally, the bolt walkers were also reminiscent of the walkers in Falling Skies for me, although I guess a mech is a mech is a mech.

Not played the game, frankly my stack of to be finished ps/3 games is huge, but I like what Is ee so far, also it’s nice that syfy are using the game of thrones model, showing it in the USA one day, then the UK/Europe about 18 hours later.

Overall I like the Doc, Nolan and the imogen, the mix of different aliens and cultures gives the whole thing a certain cosmopolitan feel and brings me back to feelings of Farscape., I’m leaving out further thoughts for now, until it’s clear if we’re spoiling in this thread or not.
on the “I shall be guesting regularly in the slayercast as well as my usual appearances on Gatecast, nutty bites et al” ID

All episode threads will be spoiler-filled. I will label all episode threads as appropriate in the future.

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In shame I will note that I’m almost two weeks behind at this point. I did, in fact, watch the premiere on Skyffy the night it aired but wanted to take a deeper dive into the pilot before I posted here. The premiere being a two hour episode did not help either!

I was impressed with the pilot when I watched it and I’m still impressed now. I have not yet watched the 2nd episode (it sits still and taunts me on my DVR) but plan to directly after posting this. The two hours were one long story but you could clearly pick up the break between hour 1 and hour 2. I have no issues with that since anytime in the future they will air as episode 1.01 Pilot, Part I and 1.02 Pilot, Part II separately. It’s just the way that TV is these days.

I also have not yet played the game, although it sit taunting me right next to my xBox. Hoepfully, I will get a chance to start that today as well.

First I’d like to point out the wonderful music of Bear McCreary. In fact there were a couple of scenes that I swear Bear kept the music just as similar as he could to BSG to give off the specific vibe of the scene. I look forward to hearing his work more.

Secondly I’d like to point out that one of the main series writers/producers is Rockne S. O’Bannon. You may remember some of Rockne’s work from shows like Farscape, Seaquest DSV and the 2011 version of V.

The special effects so far have been great. There were a couple of cheesy moments that stand out in my mind like the Caprice Classic car chase scene and the bridge the Volge were crossing right before a commercial break, but the space scenes were amazing and the landscapes really gave you a feel that you were on a terraformed Earth that was very different from our Earth. I was a little disheartened that besides the Arch St. Louis is nothing like Defiance but I heard that episode 3 in the mines explains some of that.

In the pilot Nolan is really given a Han Solo vibe. It’s a very different vibe than Sherriff Carter had in Eureka. Nolan owes money too Varus (Jabba), Nolan is an expert tracker/Ark Hunter (Han’s smuggling expertise - and a little bit of Indiana Jones), Nolan calls Mayor Amanda Rosewater ‘Sweetheart’ as Han called Leia when they first meet, and Nolan is packing up to get out of town before Defiance stands to fight the Volge but returns to save the day. We do see that he is very skilled as a track though. So at least he’s capable.

I was a bit disappointed that the main contention in town came down to a human (McCawley) and only one alien species (The Tarrs as Castithans) but have no doubt that as the series progressing all of the Voton races will become important. I’m still trying to see what Christie McCawley sees in Alak Tarr. After the battle since they fought side by side I could see a bond, but before hand it had me scratching my head.

I also found it amusing that Amanda sent Nolan right into the arms of her sister Kenya at the NeedWant. I’m sure that will be revisited as the series progresses.

There is definitely more to Irisa than we saw in the show. She is almost like a Eureka Deputy Jo although she is instantly fixated on young Alak Tarr by drawing a sketch of him. I hope the show keeps up Irisa’s diary. It will be an excellent way to explain some of the nuances of such a combined society that we as a viewing audience may find it hard to grasp. She was portrayed in the pilot as cold, selfish and ruthless. Hopefully she softened over time. We all came to love Zoe Carter in Eureka after a while, didn’t we?

Another thing I noticed was the decided lack of grieving for Lawmaker Garrett Clancy. Perhaps it is just a factor of the new world they live in and that they have seen so much death and destruction that just trying to survive takes precedence?

And what’s with all the 40-50 year old cars? Are we supposed to get a Mad Max feeling from that? I mean they have Rollers and ATVs and it looks like a brand new tire on Nolan’s second Roller, so they have to still be making cars somewhere.

So are we to consider the Bioman an alien race, or just a fighting android? He should could have been useful in the battle against the Volge.

So that’s my take on the episodes 1 & 2. any comments are welcome!

~Shooter Out