A new trailer for Stargate Universe's second season shows everything's been taken up a notch. There's more aliens, action and drama! We tried to answer every question you might have about the new season, on our set visit aboard Destiny.
First things first — take another look at the brand new trailer for the second season of SGU. It's chock full of new plot lines the show is juggling. Plus a Chloe alien? Color us interested.
We went to Vancouver, along with a few other journalists, to get a glimpse at the Destiny in the dark-metal flesh. And we have to say, the set was pretty compelling. Very few things are green screened on the Destiny, besides the sky. All in all, it's a pretty intimidating ship with a lot of surprises. But more on that later. The most important stuff we need to talk about now is: Holy cow, what is happening this season? Through various exclusive interviews and a few round-table chats with most of the crew from SGU, we managed to get a few answers as to what to expect. Mind you, we hadn't seen the trailer before we spoke with the cast, and the trailer sheds a bit more light on what the crew told us. What follows is only slightly spoilery, if you've already watched the above trailer.
Will there be new aliens?
The answer is clearly yes, as you can see from the beasties they showed in the trailer. But according to David Blue at the SGU round table, there's plenty more alien goodness than what we just saw in the trailer.
David Blue [Eli]: We're on this side of the universe that's evolved without humans for a long time. There are so many kinds of different-acting things and looking things, we're kind of not really welcome here. We weren't supposed to be here. Which you may have heard…There's new aliens, a bunch of new aliens. New alien creatures, new technologies, planets... it's a whole slew!
What's Dr. Rush sitting in?
If you saw it in the trailer, you noticed that Rush has found a new room. The man himself went ahead and gave us a spoilery detail on that particular room.
Robert Carlyle [Dr. Rush]The first big reveal, I think it's the first scene, is that Rush has discovered the bridge. Between season 1 and season 2 he's found it, and he's told no one, in typical Rush fashion. He wants to keep this information to himself.
[So what you're seeing right here is the first look at the actual Bridge for the Destiny. Which Carlyle also revealed holds plenty of secrets, not only for his character emotionally but for the entire crew. We'll give you a one-word clue that Carlyle dropped, "neural interface."]
After bucking command over Col. Young's torture procedures, among other things, will Lt. Scott revolt against his superior? Is it Scott's turn to be the leader? [Young looks like a mess in the trailer, just sayin']
Brian J. Smith [Lt. Scott]: I think it's something that's been building up. I think Scott's in a really difficult position because there's a command structure and he's been indoctrinated to believe and support the command structure. His job is to follow out orders and to execute things, right?... I don't think Scott's quite strong enough to say, "All right, you know, I'm in command now, this is my ship and we're putting you in the brig or whatever." He can't do that. So, I will say that Young's downhill slide is going to continue in a pretty dramatic way, and Scott has to make some decisions about: "Is Young going to be replaced, is Young gotta be put in his place, does Young need to be put out of commission?" I mean, there's all sorts of things.
Will Lt. Scott quit the military and join up with the civvies?
Brian J. Smith [Lt. Scott]: No. No. I think Scott will always be military, military, military, and that anything that happens, Scott thinks, "How can I make this military side of our existence better." Instead of, "OK, the military's broken now, I'm going to head over to the civilians," I think Scott wants to fix things. You saw that in "Faith." He's really trying to bring people together and he doesn't want people to fight. The thing I always go back to about Scott, you've got to realize he's a kid who's never had a family. His parents died at a really young age, his caregiver died of alcoholism when he was 16. He thought he basically was involved in the abortion of the kid until he found out that the kid was still around. He wants redemption somehow. I think that he thinks he can get redemption in this situation by getting everybody home and getting them back home in better shape than when they got here. And so he wants to fix things. He wants everyone to get along, he wants people to put aside their differences, and he wants to be kind of an example of, "You can be in the military and we can still have this kind of great relationship with the civilians."
SGU spent a lot of time upgrading the drama around the usual freak-of-the-weak Stargate plots, which is where risk-taking episodes like "Time" came from. So what is the new difficult freak-like plot line SGU is tackling?
Producer, writer and co-showrunner Brad Wright: I don't want to give too much away, but let's just say that the aliens didn't just experiment on Rush. Let's just say that that has a huge impact on the first half of the season. But I would also say that the process of discovery on this show isn't, "Look at the wonderful shiny thing!" It's, "Look at that wonderful...holy shit it's trying to kill me." We don't win as easily in this show as we do the others. Because we winked a little bit in SG-1 and in Atlantis, we were kind of aware of how broad we were being.
[We assume this is in reference to the newly shaded blue Chloe we see in the trailer — something the actress who plays Chloe also hinted at during the SGU junket]
Elyse Levesque [Chloe]: This season Chloe goes on a very different journey than the first. She undergoes a change as a result of something that's happened to her in the first season. And we watch this change her relationship with everyone on the ship, especially in her relationship with Matthew Scott. It's really interesting to see how she deals with this — the Chloe you see in season one wouldn't have had the tools or the strength to survive this. I feel like she's a grown up, she's a woman in season two.
Is TJ all right?
According to the trailer, it would seem that way. But we can't speak for her baby. And neither would the actress, but good for her, not revealing too many spoilers. But she did speak to her character's development, sounds like this season TJ might not be that all right... emotionally.
Alaina Huffman [Lt. TJ]: I cry a lot in the second season. [Laughs] Yes, absolutely, I think TJ has a lot of vulnerability, and that's what I love about her. I've learned a lot from her. I think she's stronger than she gives herself credit for. I think she's really capable of a lot more than she thinks she is, and I think the pressure of where they're at weighs on her and, yeah, I think she cracks a little bit in this season, but still is capable and still is able to do what is required of her. And she's got — her and Young sort of have this — you know, Louis and I love playing the TJ/Young we-have-each-other's-back type of thing, because I think there's no one [else] that he can be vulnerable in front of. He is the Colonel. He is in charge. Really, everything falls on his shoulders, and I do believe that he has a little, you know, a spot with TJ where he can just sort of let go. And her with him.
Will Greer and Camile Wray bury the hatchet? We were convinced he was going to murder her in the space tick episode, he was so pissed!
Jamil Walker Smith [Greer]: I say, great series have drama, and drama has conflict. And great series also have resolution, which is the result of drama coming to a head and then people having breakthroughs. This next season, not to give too much away, Ming-Na and I are put in an extraordinary situation which makes us have to leave our differences at the door (so to speak). We have to bond and find a common cause. It's going to be beautiful. There's a lot of dust involved.
Will Greer's Daddy issues rise up again?
Jamil Walker Smith [Greer]: And I find that I come to terms with the relationship opens me up maybe in regards to my mother. I liked her. I would like to see more of that actress.
What will happen with the Scott, Eli and Chloe love triangle this year?
Brian J. Smith [Lt. Scott]: I think he [Scott knows and] feels terrible for Eli. I really do, I think that he's got a lot of respect for Eli, and it's hard because a lot of the situations you see Scott and Eli in, Scott's trying to keep him in line. For example, "Come on, this is not the time to be joking, Eli, this is not the time to be clever or cute — you're trying to survive here." So I think people might sometimes think that Scott is kinda being a hard-ass with Eli and that, that might be connected to Chloe, but no. I think he's got a lot of respect for Eli as a mind, and also as a heart. And I think the whole- this little three-way thing, is going to go in an interesting direction.
David Blue [Eli]: Eli and Chloe had a connection from the beginning. They had a real, true connection that has grown into a really close friendship. And she's found a great guy in Scott. And for a while I don't think Eli knew how to deal with that. Especially in that moment [when Eli told Chloe about his feelings for her in the season finale]. That moment was really important for them it was an acceptance. It is then allowed to grow into a close trust. I'm not saying the door is closed at all for anything in the future, it ain't. But there is a new love interest for Eli in the future. I think it's honest and sweet, and heart-wrenching and true. It's a really great storyline and I never once thought, oh my god we're betraying the Eli and Chloe storyline.