The Comic-Con 2013 panel for "Revolution" (which returns for a second season Wed. Sept. 25 at 8:00 p.m.) filled every seat, but still show creator Eric Kripke spent plenty of time promising that the upcoming season would be much better than the first. The first step in doing that? While the power is on, it won't stay on for long. "Just long enough to get the nukes in the air," he said. "Our heroes are heroically striving to stop those bombs. Spoiler alert: They don't stop them. We're trying to be the first network show that loses two cities in the first fifteen minutes. The East Coast is totally destabilized. How would we survive in this neo-primitive world and how do we go from there? And then hilarity ensues."
Kripke continued his modest slam on his own show, saying, "I'm harder on the show than any human being, and as I was watching the second half of the season, I kept thinking there was a lot of power for a place that has no power. But I was really excited to kind of go back to basics. A powerless world is a fascinating concept… This year we really explore that with weapons and savagery. It was a way to push through and to have a more expansive story. It's about the soul of America, it's about faith, it's about God, it's about destiny, and whatever happened in the tower. They may have very well changed some reality. It's really gonna unfold. If last year was about a war, this year is about this mystery. No question of a better season two than season one... Certainly certain laws of physics have been altered."
After Kripke told everyone what he doesn't like about his own show, the questions turned to the stars. Most of them were aimed at Giancarlo Esposito. He explained what he most appreciated about playing Major Neville. "He's a good chess player and I appreciate that. He's trying to gain some power… but it doesn't last for long... You see a guy who's broken… but still thinking and wondering how this all came about. When you have to be a leader you have to make hard decisions and there's going to be a body count… All I ask my children to do is just listen, don't talk back. But sometimes parents get tired."
"Kids get tired, too," Pardo shot back.
"He's younger and better looking and he gets tired," Esposito joked. "But Neville has to start listening to his son.
The question of whether or not Neville's wife is dead came up, and the star was quick to point out it's never been confirmed. "We haven't found her, put it that way."
The relationship between Miles and Monroe was broached, and thought Lyons wisecracked, "We never talk anymore," Kripke had a more complex reply.
"Guys who have that sort of history, because guys don't talk about their history, so there's punching… they're two great characters, and such a Cain and Abel story, and they were so split apart. There are these bad people, these people who claim to be Americans who came up from Cuba, but the idea was create a villain this year that's so bad and so insidious our heroes and our villains have to work together, and ultimately we're going to tell a story about all of these people coming together to fight the same enemy.
We wanted to have this villain that uses the iconography of the stars and stripes, but you'll see that's a mask and they're really bad dudes. We wanted a villain that was much more about a mystery, about how deeply ingrained they are in the United States, and watching that unfold and how far back that conspiracy goes, it's a far more satisfying engine…. season one became a war show, but this… lets us dig into the concept of the show instead of running and gunning."
Evlin also spoke about how the show was going to travel, and locations would become an integral part of the story. "The Texas Rangers will make an appearance, " he said.
A fan asked about the wisdom of bumping off key characters, and Kripke explained, "It's mostly to keep them in line. But seriously, it's a very specific story tool. When you're createng a world as dangerous as we want it to be, you can't play by the rules that certain people will never get hurt. You'll start to lose the tension and suspense. You have to prove once in a while that it's that dangerous… We kill the people we love."
Before the panel could end, Kripke had to assure the audience again about his planned changes. "I'm relentless about improving the show. As good as it was, it could be better. Let's take power off the table and let the show be all about the other issues. How do you survive with the savagery all around you? It's always been a show about hope and love… we could start making it a show about all these ideas and it's not just about the power. It's going to be a much more interesting expanse of canvas. We've pushed through the power… and let's start talking about this world."
Will you be watching season two of "Revolution"?