The third season of Falling Skies has kept viewers on the edge of their seats as the stakes were raised for the Mason family and other beloved characters, but Sunday the TNT sci-fi show wrapped up for the summer.
EW has answers to your burning questions about tonight’s finale straight from showrunner Remi Aubuchon.
SPOILER ALERT: Stop right there, move no further, as if a Mega Mech just stomped into your path, unless you’re ready to read details of tonight’s season finale of Falling Skies.
Though Falling Skies had quite the creepy and cliffhanger-filled season 2 finale to live up to, the season 3 capper delivered both action-packed and intimate moments, and it satisfactorily closed some season-long arcs while opening up juicy new storylines.
The end of season 3 marks the end of Aubuchon’s tenure as the show runner for Falling Skies. His departure from the series will afford him more time to work on his debut novel. In season 4, Battlestar Galactica alum David Eick will take over showrunning duties. Aubuchon filled EW in on the making of tonight’s finale, titled “Brazil,” and though Eick was unavailable for an interview, Aubuchon provided some teases for what’s to come on Falling Skies in season 4.
Read on for why Aubuchon decided to kill off Karen in the way he did, what’s going on with Lexi, how a scientific advisor helped the writers craft the yet-to-be-revealed Espheni end-game, and whether season 4 will feature a new love triangle.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So, this is it. How are you feeling about saying goodbye to Falling Skies?
REMI AUBUCHON: I have a huge amount of mixed feelings about it. From a point of view of my personal journey, I probably made the right decision. I have a lot of pain and nostalgia [laugh] – we’ll call it separation anxiety. Comic-Con killed me in many ways emotionally because when you’re in a room with 3,000 fans who in some ways know the show even better than you do, you get all of that energy and you just don’t want to stop. That was kind of sad in some ways for me. But good too.
How are things working from the transition from you to David Eick showrunning? Have you talked with David about a lot of your ideas for season 4, or are you leaving it totally in his hands?
At the beginning we had several conversations. David and I are friends, so we’ve known each other for a long time. I actually recommended him for the job. And we sat and talked about mythology. We talked about where I was going, what I hoped to leave on his plate for him to make some amazing meal out of. But once that initial conversation was done, I kind of left it to David to figure out what to do. And David and Carol Barbee [who will also join Falling Skies in season 4 as a producer] and the rest of the staff there have years of experience, and I feel really confident that they’re going to come up with something really cool for the fourth season.
To be honest, when I took over in the second season, I watched the finale of the first season and I kind of went, “Tom getting in a spaceship – okay.” I asked everybody, “What were you thinking [would happen next]?” and they go, “Uh, we don’t know.” I wanted to leave David with a little more than that.
The Volm initially want to send the 2nd Mass to Brazil, away from the warzone. What is the writers’ picture of how things look in Brazil? Is it less affected by the invasion than the areas we’ve seen on the show?
We’re always trying to open up world a little more, and while we didn’t explore it in great detail, the implication was that a lot of South America hadn’t been as affected by the Espheni invasion as the rest of the world was. Part of that is just that strategically it probably didn’t make sense for the Espheni in preparing for the inevitable Volm conflict. I just like the notion that there might be some spots in the world that are relatively free of the war, as has happened in almost every giant conflict in the world. The Afghans have a very different point of view of the war there than we do.
Most fascinating in this Brazil storyline was watching Cochise in these scenes with his father, seeing how torn he is. How did knowing you had these scenes to lead up to impact how you developed Cochise’s arc throughout the season?
That’s one thing we knew right at the beginning that we were going to do – that even Cochise knew right from the beginning [about the plan to send the 2nd Mass to Brazil]. And we talked to Doug Jones [who plays Cochise] about this as well, that Cochise knows what’s going to happen. He doesn’t want to talk about it because he’s under orders not to. But he knows exactly what’s going to happen, and when it finally comes up, you can kind of see right at the beginning that Cochise is a little uneasy about everything. Even when the spaceship lands, everybody’s cheering, and Cochise is kind of, “Okay, well, now I’m going to have to really finally face what’s coming, which is my father telling these guys, ‘We’re shipping you off.’” And he tries to make the best of it. There’s a couple things I love about that scene when his father is telling Tom and Colonel Weaver that they’re going to Brazil, and you can just see how Cochise is squirming, and it’s just one of those lovely moments. What’s fascinating to me, of course, is that Doug Jones is actually playing both characters, and even though we later re-voiced his father’s character. It’s just one of my favorite scenes – it makes us really like Cochise.
Lexi now appears to be six years old, and she has the power to extract eye worms. Are there other powers she has yet to show us?
To be honest, that’s as far as I got. And so, who knows what they’ve got in mind for the fourth season? We had an inkling that Lexi was a special child. And I think that the big question that is a little subtle but is definitely there is, is that Anne and Lexi? Tom saw them dead. It’s a little coincidental that all of the sudden Anne and Alexis show up in the middle of the woods. I really don’t know what’s going to happen in the fourth season, but certainly our thought was to leave that as an open question. Is that even Anne? Why is she sleeping all the time?
Do you know how big of a time jump there will be from the season 3 finale to where season 4 picks up?
I really don’t. I’ll tell you that one of the reasons that we decided to make a seven-month jump at the beginning of this season is that when you have a limited number of episodes, you really want to make sure that you’re going to get the maximum impact of the story that you’re going to tell episode-by-episode. The real technical reason why we jumped ahead seven months was just to get the storytelling going at an exciting point instead of it being five episodes of learning about the Volm and learning about Tom becoming president. I’m not saying those aren’t valid stories, but they’re just not as high-impact stories as “Oh my God, there’s a mole, and we’re under attack, and what do you mean Karen is now the new overlord?” It just seemed like a better place to start, so I wouldn’t be surprised if David is planning a similar jump because it’s just smart storytelling.