Syfy’s Defiance is go for a second season, extending a collaboration between the show and its online game which to date has garnered 1 million registered accounts.
Defiance has been a massive investment for Syfy and Universal Cable Productions. Billed as a “transmedia experience,” the series is tied to a massively multiplayer online video game. The combined price tag of the freshman season and the video game is a cool $100 million.
The show is set in a vastly changed American Midwest:
Set in the near future, Defiance features an exotically transformed planet Earth, its landscapes permanently altered following the sudden – and tumultuous – arrival of seven unique alien races. In this somewhat unknown and unpredictable landscape, the richly diverse, newly-formed civilization of humans and aliens must learn to co-exist peacefully. Each week, viewers follow an immersive character drama set in the boom-town of Defiance, which sits atop the ruins of St. Louis, Missouri, while in the game, players will experience the new frontier of the San Francisco Bay area.
David Klaus is intrigued by the show’s use of his hometown but wishes the culture had more depth:
Their “St. Louis” underground is a strange parallel to the real thing, and they’ve made local geography and cultural mistakes, but these are mixed in with a few things right. The sf elements are cliched, with each race being a cultural stereotype w/everyone from the race all being the same. Instead of Klingons=warriors, Ferengi=shady businessmen, it’s Irathians=mysteriously religious, Ibogenes=super-scientists, Liberata=cynical domestic servants, Castithians=schemers. Literal racism.
[Thanks to David Klaus for the story.]