Defiance The Show Gets A Season 2. That's Not Good For Me.

SyFy and Trion World's crossmedia experiment seems to be a hit in both intereactive and non-interactive form, with more than a million active accounts in than a million registered accounts for the MMO and nearly four million viewers tuning in for the television series premier. Today Syfy has announced that it's renewed the TV series for another 13 episodes starting in 2014, despite it being pretty damn mediocre so far.

What? I'm not a fan, and it's sad, because I should be. An ensemble cast, aliens on Earth, a video game tie-in — this is a property made with me in mind, and I'm just not getting it.

It's not the game. It's a solid-if-repetitive shooter with an interesting storyline and some engaging driving segments. Trion has five paid and non-paid expansions due out this year alone, adding new playable races and gameplay types to the mix. Left alone, it might blossom into something really worthwhile.

But it's not alone. It's tied into a television series set in a location half a continent away from the game's setting. It features characters similar to those in the television series, but the actual stars appear only briefly. There are going to be regular content updates that fold show content lightly into the batter, but it doesn't look like the two will ever completely be in line.

But Syfy and Trion will keep trying, and that's a pity, because the more I watch the show, the less I like the game.

The launch of the show brought the MMO logs to a screeching halt. It's the aliens in the powder make-up and horrid blonde wigs. It's the generic gruff hero with a heart of gold Grant Bowler. It's Julie Benz, whom I love, but really isn't convincing me there's a reality in which anyone would elector her mayor of a cheese sandwich, let alone a wild frontier alien town. It's the fuzzy aliens that look like Sid and Marty Kroft creations.

Defiance the game has promise, but every time I try and play I get the taste of the television series in my mouth. It tastes like powdered wigs and prosthetic glue. It's the fake of the live-action disrupting my virtual reality, and it's going to keep happening for at least another year.



    Oh for fucks sake get over yourself. Throw a tantrum over it why don't you. I know a few people who don't mind the show so far. It's rating ok which means it obviously has an audience. It's non offensive scifi along the lines of Farscape which found an audience too eventually, albeit a niche one.

    I hate to burst your bubble, but 'great' shows like Star Trek The Next Generation, DS9, Star Gate etc, all had pretty dour first seasons, some, pretty dour SECOND seasons as well. Infact with scifi? It's usually the THIRD seasons where the show finds its footing and takes off. Happens with most Trek shows (TNG they call it 'growing the beard', in line with Rikers Beard, DS9 gets the Defiant, Voyager finally got rid of Kes in at the end of season 3 thank christ and Enterprise though it was the least 'good' trek show, at least introduced a pretty heavy handed plotline of global annihilation for Earth.)

    The makeup and effects can usually be tied down to budgetary reasons, it's not a life ending reason or even a deal breaking thing for a show. Look at most FX in TNG, DS9 and Voyager, 90% of your aliens were 'bumpy headed aliens of the week' with either powdered wigs or prosthetic pieces.

    So again, pull your head out of your ass and wake up to yourself, don't like the show? That's awesome, it's your choice, but don't put up a piece like this like you're an authority on it and why it's a goddamn tragedy a show gets a second season? I try to not use the F word much on line any more but really, for fucks sake.

      Could not have said it better myself.

      Most Scyfy originals start slow with dodgy CGI, Sanctuary, Eureka, warehouse 13 all started slow, but by the second or third season, there the best thing on TV, im loving the direction of the TV show, and the setting, cannot wait for more.

      Last edited 12/05/13 1:17 am

      Always nice to see Kotaku has their collective fingers on the pulse lol. What a joke you are Kotaku. The show has definite potential, that's clear to anyone.

      Don't worry so much, this is just a click-bait article. They know it'll irk their audience and they'll all come here to comment about how stupid the writer is and how fucked up Kotaku is. But they'll get the page hits in the process dammit!

      Wow. This annoys you that much? I'm really fighting the urge to tell you to grow up. He shouldn't put something like this up because he isn't an authority on it? What? So exactly what qualifies someone as an 'authority'? Someone who likes it? The idea that everyone should know sci fi gets better in the third season and shouldn't be criticized until then is ludicrous. You realise that don't you?

      You also don't seem to grasp the concept of storytelling and you somehow seem to want to compare the designs of Defiance to that of Star Trek, if you can't see the difference, there's something wrong with you. I just don't understand why you feel the need to act this way because someone doesn't like something you do. And a word of warning: don't venture too far into the internet, you may find a few other people don't like the same things you do either. I'm sure they'll understand when you tell them how to express themselves and after which season they should do so.

        What a load of condescending rot. As a long term scifi fan of 30+ years plus shows made before my time, I've got a fair bit of experience to base that on. Quite a few shows take a while to hit their stride. The idea of critique isn't unwarranted but how about constructive criticism which isn't present here. You realise that don't you? Maybe you're unaware of how to dissect an argument to ascertain its points. As far as storytelling goes, well, I would hope I did, being an English major. A word of warning for you my son, don't venture too far into reality, with that kind of attitude, one day someone won't care what kind of keyboard warrior you are, they'll sit you on your feral little arse.

      You seem to think Stargate and Star Trek are great but Farscape isn't? Man. You're opinion is as off as the authors.

        It's non offensive scifi along the lines of Farscape which found an audience too eventually, albeit a niche one.

        Where on earth did I say that? I used to watch Farscape and loved it. Talk about your leaps of logic mate. All I said was non-offensive. BSG was by some considered 'offensive scifi' in the sense that it challenged religious views week in week out (how I adored the controversies that sprung from that show all the time online), Farscape was great scifi that had awesome fun. However, the reality, due to its ratings, even the producers admitted this, was that Farscape had a niche audience. Which Sanctuary will likely find as well if it's succesful.

        Last edited 16/05/13 9:08 am

    When has the first dozen episodes of an American sci-fi series ever been good? The greats have acceptable at best first seasons where they tread water trying to establish a universe. After they've setup the premise, the worlds, the races, etc then they move onto the real good stuff.

    Last edited 12/05/13 2:07 am

      Firefly! Shame it only got those dozen episodes...

        Whedons always the exception to the rule. The man always hits the ground running.

          Remember Dollhouse? Not even Whedon is the exception to the rule.

            I dunno if you mean that it started slow or was bad throughout it's run, but if it's the latter I bite my thumb at you, sir. I don't think it was as good as Firefly but I still think it deserved a few more seasons

              Agreed. It was interesting and something new. I really wish it had at least one more season.

              Oh no, I meant that the show did not hit the ground running at all. The first season was just plain terrible, whereas season 2 opened up the setting more and expanded the focus towards the ensemble cast, who were much more interesting than Echo, in regards to both her season 1 clean doll state and her season 2 semi-aware state. I personally feel that one of the biggest mistakes of season 1 (and there were many) was focusing nearly exclusively on Echo, in which Eliza Dushku was failing to portray the character in a way that was convincing and made you care about the character (although she did start to improve coming to the end of season 1 and throughout season 2), whereas the actors playing the secondary dolls pretty much nailed it in their occasional appearances from season 1.

                A very fair point :) every great creator has his 'avatar' lol

    The series could easily "Terra Nova" if it's not careful, but as of three episodes I'm still watching.

    for all critical intents and purposes the show is mediocre as fuck, but despite that it has something, I can't explain it and it's not my job to explain it (not your either though), all I know is it's got something, and as the make-up gets better (which it probably will as they build up a library of sorts) all that other stuff might just fall in line. it has the makings of a great show, but you can't just start at the top like you seem to be expecting, very few shows can produce with that level of class by the end of their first season, the studios don't want to invest that much and everybody's still getting comfortable with it.

    TV shows are like MMOs, you need to give them some breathing space so they can work through their growing pains, and I personally am really looking forward to a second season because it'll be the first actual taste of what they can do with the training wheels off.

    P.S. I can't help feeling you're an incredibly vain person to judge a TV series by the quality of its wigs.

      Well said and thought out. The best scifi shows have that 'something' they grow into. Falling skies grew into it end of season 2 recently for example.

    So, for an industry that continually talks about innovation and trying new concepts you decide that burying a new idea before it has a chance to mature is the right way to go?
    I guess you would have had Star Trek cancelled after the first season too?
    How about writing a piece that obtains new information and context to support your personal idea. How about you research what the shows budget is, how it compares to other series and therefore how comparative their effects and quality should be.
    Do you actually just get paid to express your dislike for something? You can do that for free on Facebook.

    It’s Julie Benz, whom I love, but really isn’t convincing me there’s a reality in which anyone would elector her mayor of a cheese sandwich, let alone a wild frontier alien town

    Clearly you aren't paying attention. Her character is supposed to be like that. She wasn't elected, the old mayor retired and she got the job by default. There is an election coming up shortly. Her characters whole arc so far has been about nobody taking her seriously.

      At one point as she's giving a speech someone yells out "can we get the real mayor back?"

        Indeed. I believe they based her on Sarah Palin partially.

          Haha, good one. Seriously tho, the show isn't anything excellent, it's just good. That's how I'd describe it, good but not great. It's an entertaining 50 minutes every week. It has potential tho, that's for sure.

      I've already said this exact thing in a previous article by the same author bashing the show, and obviously he still isn't paying any attention to character, cant help some people i guess.

    You people defending Defiance wouldn't know a good television show if it came up to you and bit you on the arse.

    Defiance has for the first episode a for it's central plot of Romeo and Juliet for crissake! I'm surprised someone didn't call them "star crossed lovers" in the episode and the wealthy rival families aren't named "The Montagulians" and "The Capulons".

    See, here's the problem - people actually think shows like Stargate and DS9 and Sanctuary and all that are actually good.

    No, they're really not.

    These series are written with no ending in mind. That's fucking bullshit. That's what makes them rubbish.

    Every good story, every good book, every good movie, every good series, every good game is written with an ending in mind. Look at shows like Lost and Heroes which were written without clearly defined ends, and then when they were rewarded another series, they turned to absolute crap. Yes, they may have been turned around by clever writing to conclude the story, but if they were written concisely in the beginning there wouldn't have been such a shit middle full of stupid plot holes and loose ends.

    Amongst the plethora of crap episodes in sci-fi series, yes, there may be some gold to be syphoned out, maybe even one whole series in amongst 6 or 7 which is worthwhile watching, but overall it's recycled plots from other better television shows and non-television sources, and mostly simply fan service to sell DVDs and memorabilia.

    This in itself is not bad, some of the best television is recycled stories, but given time and again television shows which offer promise of something truly different and clever to TV audiences, something which isn't just a vehicle to extend the brand and bring in merchandising dollars, get canned, whilst garbage like Defiance gets another series.

    Defiance may get better, but it shouldn't need to. It should be good from the get go, it's certainly got enough money behind it to be better, but it's not. It's no better than the scores of television shows which lost their funding in the last few years, the scores of shows which offered the viewer something worthwhile, and this is because they spend the money on effects and makeup when the bulk of the money for any series should be spent on people who can actually write.

      Have you seen the morons posting here? No one's going to read this. Can't break that wall of ignorance, man.

      admittedly I kind of tuned out when Heroes was at its third season, but I think it's a lesson on what happens when you have too well a "clearly defined end" . after the whole "save the cheerleader, save the world" arc, Season 2 felt like the series was trying to justify its continued existence, and it didn't quite feel like the initial vision went more than that first season.

      I think Buffy really nailed it by each season having its own "big bad" that it built up to.

    Yeah! Fuck you Fahey! How dare you have an opinion! What do you think this is? A website wherein you get paid to write what you think of things? Not on my watch. You'll love the things I love and you'll damn well like it you hear me?

      he can have an opinion, but he's not just saying he doesn't like the show in his opinion, he's saying he doesn't like the show and it shouldn't get a second season, as if his opinion is more important then those that do like the show.

      and to top it all off it appears he hasn't even been paying attention to base character plot of a main character, something that has not just been mentioned in passing but consistently through ever currently aired episode.

      if he doesn't like it he can just not watch it, there's a reason the game and show are set in different locations, it's so that you don't need one to enjoy the other, it's just that little bit more for those that do partake in both.

      I see no reason why the show shouldn't continue for those that enjoy and why he can't just not watch it. he can dislike it all he wants, but he can fuck off if he thinks i shouldn't be able to enjoy it.

        but his opinion is just that- an opinion. His opinion can't get defiance taken off the air anymore than mine can, and for these guys to get so angry at him over it seems a bit too much to me, seeing as it's his job to have an opinion on things video game related. maybe just let him think what he wants about stuff hey?

          ok let me put it this way, if i were to say i don't like sex so you should never be able to have it again does that sound reasonable?

          I'll let him have his opinion when he realizes that he has to let me have mine, otherwise all he's doing is being an ass.

          oh and if this site exists for the sole purpose of the reporters stating their opinions without even discussing the topic properly (or paying attention to the thing they so quickly judge) then its standards are lower then I thought.

      and thats the point. Its just an opinion - no facts, no wider context, no debating argument to support it as piece of interest on a professional website. Its a one sided opinion. If thats the quality of this site, we should all be writing editorials for them.

      Last edited 12/05/13 1:47 pm

    i glad the show has been renewed for another season, while i am enjoying i do think it could use some improvements, just hoping it doesnt take too long to fix itself

    wtf are you on? The show is actually pretty good. It has a Firefly feel to it. The game may be a bit eww at the moment but at least they are trying new things. Even if it is a tie in to the show but it has a reason to be tied in, since things will carry over from the game to the tv series and from the tv series to the game.

    Even comps like getting your game character to appear in the tv show are active atm

    i tried wathcing it once, didnt get through the first ep ima have to try again later

    The show is horrid. Bad Effects, Bad Characters and Bad Story

    I dont care what you guys think but to me I enjoy both the game and tv show.

    I kind of agree with what he's saying but I don't mind watching it. I mean this show is such a mash up of genre cliches and at times I cringe when i recognise some plot point or character that's been adapted from another TV series or movie. In five years time this will not be a show that will stick with me or that I may even remember. Shows like Firefly and Battlestar Galactica are the scifi shows that I remember well even after all this time.

    I've been enjoying both the show and the game. For me Defiance slots squarely into the same box as shows like Star Trek, Stargate SG-1, and Farscape. It's essentially B-grade prime time scifi. I'm fine with that. Anyone who needs a refresher on dodgy makeup and sfx should go watch the first season or two of the shows I mentioned above - take the rose colored glasses off, and they're pretty low budget.

    But that's OK, I'm not there for top end makeup and effects. It's cheesy, it's fun, it's everything I want from such a show.

    It is hilarious... such show to renew and shows like Stargate Universe and Terra nova to be canceled....

    And here my friends is the reason why scifi gets canned so often these days.

    If you dont like the show, you dont watch it. Really, its that simple!

    I completely agree with the first response here. Iv been watching scifi for 20+ years and the trend I have seen over the last few years is shows with brilliant prospects coming out and being canned simply because of immature prats like the twerp who wrote this 'article' anyone with half a brain would know that, really, ANY series and not just scifi, takes a few seasons to get into the swing of thngs because they are trying to play it safe and appear to the larger audience. Once they have there followers, they can start expanding and exploring.
    Anyone remember Babylon 5?
    Wasnt really anything special untill half way through the third season.
    What about shows like Buffy, or The Vampire Diaries (not exactly shows I personally enjoy) they didnt really start getting good untill the second season.
    With closed minded like this, we arnt going to get anymore scifi. Its a sad reality, one that brings tears to my eyes, but I feel that because of immature prattle like this. Scifi is DYING.
    Dont ruin it for the rest of us. Grow up. Seriously, grow up.

    Dont forget the V remake. I agree its sad that SGU and TN got canned, but I feel this show has potential. Thats enough for me. I just want them to keep making scifi =

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