At the TCA (Television Critics Association) press tour today, the producers and stars of NBC’s ‘Awake’ had a lot to say about its high concept mid-season series starring Jason Isaacs (‘Harry Potter’ movies, ‘Peter Pan). The executive show runners still have high hopes for the series and think the television audiences will follow the storyline amidst concerns from critics who feel that it may be too complicated.
‘Awake’ is a new show created by Kyle Killen (‘Lone Star’) who also writes and co-executive produces the show. It’s a procedural series that centers on a police detective (Isaacs) who wakes up after a car accident and finds himself living in two different realities. In one, his wife survives and his son dies in the accident and in the other reality, his son survives but not his wife. Which one is real or is he going crazy? While trying to figure this out, he goes back to work solving crimes and sees clues and details that somehow overlap from one reality into the other in “fascinating and inexplicable ways.” This insight enables him to solve his cases each week.
Sounds confusing? Apparently someone in the network thought so as you may recall, in October, production was shut down after the fifth episode was filmed in order for the writers to hammer out some script issues before production started up again three weeks later. Gordon insists that the three week break was not an indication that the show was going off track. . “We were very lucky that we didn’t have an airdate,” he said. “This was a challenging show for us to figure out. We could have kept going, but the three-week hiatus gave us a chance to sort of get our heads together and learn from the distance we had traveled.”
In addition, Killan and co-executive producer Howard Gordon (‘24’, ’Homeland’) think the television audience won’t have a problem with the storyline. “It’s a fairly get-able concept,” states Gordon. Killian also added that “It’s a dramatic procedural, a puzzle every week. At its heart, it’s a unique twist on the procedural dramas that you are actually very used to.”
One of the things that was also revealed at the TCA press tour was how the show would resolve the alternate reality storylines. If you’re already predicting that the show will end with the “It was all a dream” explanation, Killen makes it clear that this will not be the case. “I personally believe ‘It was all a dream’ is not particularly satisfying. We will work hard to avoid frustrating ourselves and you if we have the opportunity to wrap it all up 8 or 9 years from now.” Series star Jason Isaacs adds that the cast does know how the show will end. “We have a plan,” he quips, “and we’re never going to tell anyone, so stop asking us.”
NBC has ordered 13 episodes of ‘Awake’ but has yet to set a premiere date but once they do, we’ll let you know. In the meantime check out the TV spot for the series from NBC below:
‘Awake’ TV Spot
‘Awake’ stars Jason Isaacs, Laura Allen (‘The 4400’), Wilmer Valderrama (‘That 70’s Show’), Steve Harris (‘Minority Report’, ‘Friday Night Lights’), Michaela McManus (‘The Vampire Diaries’), Dylan Minnette (‘Lost’, ‘Men of a Certain Age’).