The Television Critics Association (TCA) 2020 is in full effect and has just released new and returning programming for top networks in showbiz. “Resident Alien” is the latest to hit the SYFY scene, an adaption of the comic book series created by Peter Hogan and Steve Parkhouse.
The peculiar series will detail the life of an alien who crash lands his spaceship in a Colorado town surrounded by mountains. Unable to return to alien life as he knows it, the transformative species instead decides to take on the persona of Doctor Harry Vanderspeigle played by Alan Tudyk, working his way into an understanding of humans while dually vowing to kill them.
Lucky for this oddball town of “weirdos” as showrunner Chris Sheridan so affectionately puts it, there is one sheriff in town who just isn’t impressed by this pseudo-humanic creature’s antics. Sheriff Mike is characterized by “NCIS: Los Angeles” actor Corey Reynolds, often mistaken for his uncanny resemblance to fellow actor Flex Anderson (“One on One”). Sheriff Mike is suspicious of everything and doesn’t take lightly any intent to disrupt the town he’s growing to love.
Reynolds, who so happens to be one of the only Black cast members in the show, says that his favorite thing is ‘“having a character that is so, kind of unique.” Reynolds goes on to describe the character as a “mashup of John Wayne and Richard Pryor” with the character exuding a Country swagger with a DC street flare. Reynolds says that of events that transpire between connecting, we’ll get to discover.
In my line of questioning, it was jokingly noted that Black people and aliens don’t usually mix, and I wondered whether the show would include an exploration of Sheriff Mike’s positioning and experience as a Black man on the show. In response, the cast noted that there is “no rampant tokenism” and that the show will do a good job of portraying members of the community, with writers “taking care of those characteristics.”
Reynolds says that with the character being played from DC, “he’s got some street in him” and viewers will have the opportunity, through welcomed improvisation “how that merges with this environment.” “I think he comes across as terse, and coarse,” Reynolds stated, “but during the season, through this osmosis, we’re going to discover why is he the way that he is,” he said. “I think he really sees himself as the barometer of justice,” Reynolds concluded.
“Resident Alien” is expected to air October 2020 on NBC.