Syfy’s newest post-apolcalyptic drama, Dominion, presents a tragic vision of our world in the aftermath of a celestial battle. Angels and monsters mingle together in the remnants of formerly bustling cities. Social equality has been annihilated by a militaristic hierarchy that feels like something out of Brave New World. Yet, a shining beacon of hope remains – the Chosen One.
OHSOGRAY talked with series star Chris Egan, who plays Alex, and executive produce Vaun Wilmott about the social dynamics at play in the first episode between Alex and the Archangel Michael, as well as the bleak landscape of Vega.
Alex and Michael seem to have a complicated relationship, how will we see that evolve throughout the season?
Chris Egan: Great question. It’s a great relationship and it’s constantly getting re-defined. Alex is learning more about Michael … it grows, it’s growing. Alex is struggling with this responsibility and learning about the tattoos and learning about his destiny, it gets tense with Michael and then it’s back on track. It’s this back and forth that’s really wonderful to play with Tom, the actor who plays Michael. It’s just fantastic. He’s a great actor. It’s a great relationship.
Will the action primarily occur in Vega or will be moving on to other cities as well?
Vaun Wilmott: In the first season, we’re very much based in Vega. It was important to establish that world, establish all the characters, establish Dominion the series. But, definitely in future seasons, we’ll be expanding out to Helena, New Delphi, we’ll learn what The Camp is. The Camp is a city that moves, which is very mysterious; we don’t really know much about it or who they are. So we will definitely explore the world and the world will grow out with each season as we go. But with the first season, it was kind of important to orient the audience in the world of Dominion and Vega so we didn’t overwhelm up front. So that was the focus for the first season.
The way the society is structured, it’s a very strict caste system. What’s the thinking behind having these very specific social structures and people unable to move between them?
Vaun Wilmott: It was basically a system that General Riesen created at the beginning, basically at the founding of Vega when they were still fighting the war against the Eightballs and the Angels. They were quickly trying to build a wall at the same time as fighting off these onslaughts of these Eightballs. It was a chaotic time and they needed a way to give everybody a job, give everybody a designation, give everybody a way to pitch-in and be classified.
It was a very military system that Riesen used. It was called the “V System”, for “Vega,” V 1-6, and each level has a different designation in terms of what it means and who’s in it. But then like all systems that start out intend[ing] to be one way, it becomes something else. That happened. Over time, you have the Elites getting entrenched, taking control of more and more of the resources of the city, installing themselves as senators … as basically the fat cats of the city. Then everybody else below them getting kind of further and further cemented into their V System, or their V level, and not being able to move about.
I think that’s one of the great conflicts in the season – in the series will be certainly in Vega, which is what is right and is wrong, and what’s happening to the people and is it fair. Claire certainly represents a very different point of view than her father in terms of believing that it needs change. Whereas, he is very much fixed in, though he recognizes that it did get warped and it became distorted over time. He’s not really willing to get rid of it. That was the thinking at the beginning. It was definitely created for survival, and then over time, unfortunately, it turned into something else.
Dominion premieres tonight, with limited commercial interruptions, on Syfy at 9/8c.