The following story contains Revolution spoilers pertaining to the central mystery
The disappearance of all forms of electricity in the world of NBC’s Revolution is at the heart of the show’s mythology. Viewers experienced in serialized adventure may take comfort from writer/executive producer Eric Kripke‘s claim that he knows what caused the ‘lights to go out’.
One clue is that “The laws of physics have changed.” But while the rules have changed, the producers are determined to ground the occurrence in real-world plausibility. Kripke recruited a physicist to make sure Revolution‘s “what if?” question was one that could, in theory, happen:
“We did our homework, and we came up with something that actually is quite possible. We pitched him the secret as to why all of the power went out, and his face just lit up. He said, ‘That’s absolutely possible’.”
From the outset Revolution looks like a serialized TV fans’ dream (allowing room for genre preference): ongoing mystery, (hopefully) complex characters and a sprawling, connected story. Director Jon Favreau agrees:
“What you’re seeing now started off as a trend of cable television, has spread out, and now is going network. The audience has a tremendous capacity for sophisticated storylines. As a result, we’re seeing an appetite to try to accommodate this more ambitious style of storytelling. Hopefully we’re breaking new ground here.”
Favreau’s spot on. There’s a reason (or several) why serialized shows keep getting made, and it’s certainly not because the audience are getting tired of complex stories.
Kripke has a certain brand of serialization in mind:
“I’m not a fan of endless mystery in storytelling. I like to know where the mythology is going and that we’re getting there in exciting, fast-paced way… I never get too precious with questions, because you can answer then and then ask new ones.”
I don’t have a problem with that. It’s a smart way to approach a show like Revolution. That’s not to say that playing out mystery can’t be done effectively, or that Revolution wont have its ‘tentpole’ mysteries, but moving the story along and answering questions to reveal larger, deeper questions, is something that I think will aid the show well.
Also on the agenda at the TCA, Revolution‘s portrayal of gun control the wake of last week’s Colorado Dark Knight Rises shootings. Kripke, who was quick to issue his condolences, explained how the show deals with gun possession (guns, by the way, can still work in the world of Revolution):
“In the pilot, Giancarlo Esposito’s character says that firearms are a hanging offense. Guns are possible in the world, but they’re confiscated because we’re living in this dictatorship and they’ve taken away people’s right to bear arms.”
This dictatorship is scooping up all of the guns, a prime concern of those who fear for their 2nd Amendment rights from a government takeover. However, Kripke believes the show is working with a broader canvas:
“I think we’re talking about a dictator who is also conscripting soldiers on taxation without representation. Taking away the freedoms of what were once the citizens of the United States in a hundred different ways. At the end of the day, what we’re talking about is a very patriotic show that is in many ways about people fighting for freedom, to go where they want, say what they want, eat together with their families.”
Elsewhere, recently added cast member Elizabeth Mitchell is starting to crop up on the show’s promotional artwork. Check out the updated banners below:
Mitchell plays “Rachel Matheson”, the mother of Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos) and Danny (Graham Rogers).
Revolution turns on Mon, Sept. 17 on NBC