Bleeding Cool reporter Michael Rupert writes:
The Dark Matter panel consisted of Melissa O’Neil (Two), Anthony Lemke (Three), Alex Mallari (Four) and Joelle Ferland (Five) and the show’s executive producer Jay Firestone. The panel’s moderator was Aaron Sayers from Syfy Wire.
Sayers opened the night by asking what Firestone attributes the popularity of the show to. Firestone pointed to the cast sitting next to him, stating that it’s so much fun and that it’s quite a departure from the tone that they set so far. O’Neil added she believes it balances the serious element with the character arcs, and that the levity brought into the third season has been so well received. Ferland admitted that her character Jenna has become an intricate part of the team, and that her character has lost some of her innocence. She’s all about family, and has been through a lot of changes because of it.
Mallari says playing a bad guy has been a lot of fun. He wanted to take the fans on an emotional journey. He believes the shows writers have done an astounding job.
When asked about his relationship with the hologram, Lemke thinks he’s going to lose serious face with the crew being in love with a computer program (Natalie Brown).
O’Neil said her character’s confidence was really rocked with her unfortunate decisions as the crew’s de facto leader.
A filmed message was shown of Zoe Palmer. She expressed her regret that she couldn’t be at Comic-Con. O’Neil pointed out that there’s a neat origin story tie-in between Two and the android. She’s excited to see how the fans receive it.
Sayers asks Firestone to talk about the theme of the show: that it’s harder to be good than to be bad. Firestone points out that Mallari ‘s character, Four, is doing things for reasons he thinks are right. Firestone wanted that message in the show.
Lemke doesn’t think Three has a problem with that. He does a lot of selfish things, but has a very clear line of understanding of who his people are.
Mallari knows that to the crew of the Raza, his character, Four, is a villain; but in his heart of hearts, he’s a savior. He hopes that every time he makes a command, you can see a slight hesitation.
Where does Dark Matter fit in with the sci-fi genre? Ferland believes they are going back to basics, like Firefly. Mallari points to the diversity Dark Matter brings. The show is pushing the envelope with aliens, robots, and wars — and Firestone wants to go back to “true sci-fi”. Lemke says it is a show that doesn’t take itself too seriously. It does raises questions about identity, second chances, friendship, and loyalty. “We manage to take it seriously without being too preachy and have a whole lot of fun.”
Firestone mentions that when he first bought the comic book the show is based on, he thought it had every sci-fi element, but lacked character. “You can sit and watch a bunch of people go on spaceships, but if you’re not watching characters, forget it.”
Sayers asks Firestone: is he listening to his fanbase? Firestone remarks, “We have a few thousand people talking to us on the net…I’m curious about how you guys like aliens, android revolts, and the major debate: romance.” That causes some groans from the audience. Firestone smiles and says, “That’s what they told me you would do.”
At the end, each cast member is asked for a tease of what they have left for the rest of the season.
Ferland: “Episode 9 is my favorite. Looking forward to it. Final moment of the season.”
Mallari : “Black ships, also my kid, when asked, said, ‘I saw daddy carry his girlfriend in a little car.'”
O’Neil: “Android kicking!”
Firestone: “Gateway, something’s coming.”
The panel ends with Mallari leading the audience in chanting, “Raza crew, Raza crew!”