Not all comic book tales are superhero stories. Resident Alien, the new series making its way to Syfy, fully embraces that idea.
This is an alien invasion story inspired by the Dark Horse comic by Peter Hogan and Steve Parkhouse and adapted for the screen by long-time Family Guy writer Chris Sheridan. But it's more than just that, Resident Alien is a mashup of influences, taking style notes from John Carpenter's genre cult fave They Live and procedural mainstay Law & Order with a bit of Doc Hollywood and a sprinkling of Monk in there, for good measure. Oh, and it stars sci-fi mainstay Alan Tudyk.
It's definitely an odd one, but that's part of the show's charm. Described as the "small-town murder mystery, sci-fi doctor dramedy Earth needs right now," by SYFYWire, here's everything you need to know about Resident Alien right before the show’s premiere.
WHEN IS THE RESIDENT ALIEN RELEASE DATE?
The 10-episode first season is set to crash land on Wednesday, January 27 at 10 PM to Syfy.
WHAT IS THE PLOT OF RESIDENT ALIEN?
Resident Alien follows the story of an extraterrestrial who crash lands on Earth after a failed mission to destroy all humans. Trapped in a small town called Patience, Colorado, the alien takes the human form of one Dr. Harry Vanderspeigle (Alan Tudyk) — after he kills the real guy — and attempts to fit in while hunting for the pieces of his crashed ship in order to complete said mission. And since the town doc has fallen dead, Harry's now put in a precarious position to take up the mantle and help the humans in town.
"I just want to kill everyone," Tudyk tells Inverse. "And I'm terrible at pretending to be a human, the thing I want to destroy. I didn't plan to be here on Earth; I didn't plan on interacting with any humans. So I don't know anything about them when I accidentally crash land. It's where so much of the humor comes from which is all that trying to learn how to make the body work, and how to speak, and how to make the mouth work."
The character actor, who's won fans over with her work in the likes of Firefly, Tucker and Dale vs. Evil, and Doom Patrol has finally found himself at the top of the call sheet. That doesn't mean the starring role of Dr. Vanderspeigle is that far off from the ones that have made him famous. In fact, Tudyk sees some similarities between Harry and K-2S0, the Star Wars droid he played in Rogue One.
"K-2SO definitely has that same way of speaking to people," Tudyk reveals. "You know, there used to be a line when he first meets Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones): 'No one likes you. Everyone talks about you, and then when you come into the room, they stop. When you leave, they start talking about you again.'"
It's a moment that makes Tudyk giggle. "It was in an early cut of the movie. And that seems like something that Harry could say. 'No one likes you.' He's like a petulant little kid. I am drawn to that. There's a lot of humor there. It's really fun."
WHO'S IN THE RESIDENT ALIEN cast?
Joining Tudyk in the series are co-stars Sara Tomko (Once Upon a Time, Sneaky Pete) as Asta Twelvetrees, Alice Wetterlund (Silicon Valley, People of Earth) as D'Arcy Bloom, Corey Reynolds (The Closer, Murder in the First) as Sheriff Mike Thompson, and Levi Fiehler (The Fosters) as Mayor Ben Hawthorne.
Genre icon and Terminator alum Linda Hamilton will appear later in the season as General McCallister, who Deadline describes as "a high-ranking general who seemingly plays by the rules and runs a tight ship but secretly oversees a covert operation looking for aliens."
We'd be remiss if we didn't mention the child talent on the series, too. This is where the They Live component comes into play as Judah Prehn (Kinderwood), who plays a nine-year-old boy named Max, ends up being the only one in town who is able to see Harry's true alien form. This provides an unexpected element of comedic competition between the alien, who wants to murder the boy, and the kid who wants to expose Harry.
"I love Judah, he's fantastic," Tudyk tells Inverse. "Gracelynn [Awad Rinke] is another young actor who's with him. They end up teaming up basically, against me. She plays a character named Sahar, and she's just whip-smart. I mean, in real life, they've kind of got me outmatched."
HOW LONG IS EACH EPISODE OF RESIDENT ALIEN?
The new alien invasion dramedy will feature a total of 10 episodes, each featuring a running time of one hour.
WHERE CAN I WATCH RESIDENT ALIEN?
Aside from Syfy, the first four episodes of the series will be available to view through On Demand, OneApp, Apple TV, and Roku. It's worth remembering, though, that a cable authentication is required to view the show on these platforms.
For two weeks, beginning on February 3, viewers will be able to watch the first two episodes for free on Syfy’s YouTube page.
Is Resident Alien streaming online?
No, at least not for now, though the Syfy series may eventually make it's way to a streaming platform. In the meantime, you can always watch the first two episodes on YouTube starting February 3.
WHAT IS THE EPISODE SCHEDULE FOR RESIDENT ALIEN?
Each episode is set to air every Wednesday at 10 pm Eastern after the premiere kicks off on Wednesday, January 27.
Where CAN I WATCH THE TRAILER FOR RESIDENT ALIEN?
Aside from the official trailer for the series, SYFY released the first seven minutes of the pilot episode to whet your alien appetites! Check it.