Defiance, TV Shows

Defiance Premiere Review: Death, grit, and a dose of kill

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This may be the only thing I need to post for my Defiance Premiere Review:

Defiance's premiere in a nutshell: Death, grit, and more death. #Defiance @Syfy Click To Tweet
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SPOILERS THROUGH THE PREMIERE – you have been warned!

So, I am still suffering PTSD from Game of Thrones, and I thought I’d relax with some fun Defiance before going to sleep the other day. Oh, don’t get me wrong. Defiance has never been relaxing and important characters have died before. But this…

Let’s just say that all ability to sleep was LOST.

Defiance went into full throttle post-apocalyptic anyone can die and no on is safe mode in its premiere. And although it was completely relevant for this setting of the show, the level of grit it dropped on us was unexpected… It’s like the writers spent their break watching Game of Thrones and got some ideas…

It's like the @DefianceWriters spent their break watching #GameofThrones for ideas... #Defiance Click To Tweet

I mean, yes, New York was destroyed in last season’s finale. And yes, a beloved main character died too. But this premiere’s deaths were much, much darker. Maybe it’s because I really wasn’t expecting them.

Death Count

First, Quentin bites the dust and his dad, Rafe, is heartwrenchingly devastated. His scream is soooo haunting. And General Rahm Tak doesn’t care one bit that Quentin was an undercover spy. He just wants to kill every single human and rule the planet like the aliens originally planned.

Which, by the way, let us NOT forget that all these aliens originally wanted to terraform the Earth and make it uninhabitable for people. The only reason  they didn’t kill everyone originally was because their ships and terraforming equipment mysteriously broke down. Let’s not kid ourselves and think this really was NOT the original plan. The General just doesn’t want to deviate from it, which gives us an idea of just how devastating things could have become.

Back to the death count… Rafe’s death was even more heartbreaking. I didn’t expect it AT ALL. He storms into the house to save his daughter and grandson, killing everyone right and left like a true badass. But then when he sees his daughter on the ground, he forgets that he should always clear a room first. Instead, he enters blindly and grabs her hand. The scene is done so poetically and it is sooooo sad. He’s riddled with bullets while he holds her hand, and as the life ebbs out of him, he loses his grip and falls. 🙁


Oh, but it gets worse, don’t you worry. Christie is the next one to go, killed by Stahma herself when she’s forced to choose between Christie or Datak. But let’s be honest here. She really chose the grandchild. If she killed Datak instead, they would have ALL been killed by the general and would have possibly been around long enough to hear the baby crying. She did what she had to do.

Which just goes to show that Stahma is much stronger than Datak. He’s weak and in that moment he knew who the real leader was.

Votanis Collective

The General and his Votanis Collective are pretty darn terrifying. I mean, they ride around with their cars adorned with human heads on sticks. That’s horrifying. (And by the way, if the General looks familiar, it’s because he’s played by Lee Tergesen, who’s been on about a million things.) Who knew that the Earth Republic would end up being so important, as the only force keeping the Collective from overtaking all of North America? Who knew that we would MISS the Earth Republic?

Crazy Mom

I just want to devote a second to Pilar, who is crazy. Why did she take off and leave Alak at the RV? Did she know someone was coming and went out to hide, leaving Alak as bait? I’m not sure. The baby is accidentally living because of her, but they would all be alive if they were back in Defiance. This woman is cray, don’t you think?

Irissa is Done with Death

Kudos to the writers on giving Irissa a very realistic change after everything she’s been through. She caused sooooo much death and, even though she was taken over by an AI, it still doesn’t mean she won’t feel guilty. She’s changed her life and rather than being a fighter, she now wants to convince people not to kill. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out.

Vampires, I Mean Omecs

The Omecs are the other new “big bad” on the show. Purple skinned and acting an awful lot like vampires, they are very powerful and very intelligent, with thousands of their people in stasis on the ships above Earth. These aliens could singlehandedly take over the whole planet and all the races, I think. They were described as an ancient race pre-dating the Castithans and other races. I think they are also the most technologically advanced, and they created the Indogene originally. My guess is that among their other uses, the Indogene were created to be “organ donors” for the Omecs.

I know that, ultimately, they kind of had to take the skin from Doc in order to keep the Omecs from destroying everyone (are they really that powerful?) But it was still really hard to watch… And with so little anesthesia. Look, here’s the deal… When EVERY SINGLE ALIEN RACE is telling you that one race is evil, you might not want to dismiss it so quickly.

When EVERY ALIEN RACE is terrified of the Omecs, don't just dismiss that... #Defiance #CommonSense Click To Tweet

I think the Omecs are more technologically advanced than any other race. In fact, I think the other alien races stole the Omecs’ ships and used them to get to Earth. But the Olmecs sabotaged the ships before they left the solar system, and that’s why they ran into so many problems when they reached Earth.

Do you think I’m on to something? I bet one of the two characters — father or daughter — is going to have second thoughts about destroying all of humanity once the time comes. I’m betting on the daughter. You?

A Moment of Suspended Disbelief

There were really only a couple moments that didn’t make sense to me. One of those was when Nolan insisted on taking Irissa into town, even knowing people would hate her and might want to lynch her. Ummm, that’s not just something you dismiss! And you don’t just leave her in a car outside by herself to get kidnapped and murdered. :-/

Castithans = Targaryens? 

I made a Game of Thrones mention earlier, but I’ve got to say… I think that some writer based the Castithans on the Targaryens from Game of Thrones. Think about it… Pale skin, white hair, purple eyes… The Castithans look EXACTLY like the Targaryens are described in the books (not the show). And personality wise, with their fits of anger and such, they’re pretty similar there too.

What do you think? Am I on to something? Leave a comment below!

The Castithans looks JUST like the Targaryens. #Defiance #GameofThrones @DefianceWriters Click To Tweet


All in all, despite all the unexpected bloodshed, I really loved this premiere. It was one of the strongest episodes in Defiance’s repertoire yet.

    Stephanie Dwilson started Post Apocalyptic Media with her husband Derek. She's a licensed attorney and has a master's in science and technology journalism. You can reach her at [email protected].

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