BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The long break finally is over for the cast and crew of “Resident Alien” as the second half of the second season – which includes eight episodes – begins airing at 10 p.m. Aug. 10 on the Syfy Cable channel. The first half of the series about the adventures of a visitor from the stars who takes over the medical practice in a small town launched way back in January.
The latest batch of strange adventures in “Resident Alien” again are based on the comic books created by Peter Hogan and Steve Parkhouse. Those books follow a crash-landed alien named Harry (Alan Tudyk) who, after taking on the identity of a small-town Colorado doctor, slowly begins to wrestle with the moral dilemma of his secret mission on Earth.
Tudyk knows there has been a big gap between the two halves of the season but in his case, the delay was a good thing.
“Whenever I watch these later episodes, it’s been so long since we made them, I forget what we did. So I’m watching them. It’s very exciting,” Tudyk says. “You go, ‘Oh, I like this scene. Oh, that was great.’ You can watch it just how regular people are watching the show who haven’t been privy to the scripts before or actually lived their lives through them. It’s fun.”
“Resident Alien” is the latest in a lengthy list of acting roles featuring the Texas native that are in productions dealing with the world of science fiction and fantasy. His other work in the genre includes ‘Firefly,” “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” ‘Raya and the Last Dragon,” “Big Hero Six: The Series,” “The Tick” and “Doom Patrol.”
Tudyk appreciates the opportunity to play characters in other genres whether it is through television film or on stage. He is always quick to embrace science fiction projects such as “Resident Alien” because such roles allow him to do so many different things.
“This role, Harry Vanderspeigle, allows me to do everything I like doing in one. It’s theatrical at times. It’s very funny. It can be physical. There can be physical comedy, which you rarely ever get to do in television or in film, and it can also be very touching and have very intimate moments,” Tudyk says. “I really enjoy acting. They say ‘Never act with children or animals.’ I’ve really enjoyed acting with the young people we have on our show. I think they are just so talented, and I truly enjoy it when I see that we have scenes together. I look forward to those days.”
Part of the ease in handling the alien role for Tudyk comes from drawing on his non-acting world of how he often feels like an alien when he is at large events. He goes through anxieties about whether or not he should be at the event.
Series creator Chris Sheridan started the first season of “Resident Alien” following the stories in the comics but took the show in a different direction for the second season. Sheridan stresses that the second season pays homage to the publications.
A lot of that comes through Tudyk’s work that includes the challenge of showing how an alien would react to suddenly having to deal with a human body. Then there is the alien language that would have left many tongue-tied. Tudyk likes the scenes where he speaks the alien language because it gives him the freedom to improvise.
“It’s a collaboration between myself, and the writers write ‘Put in some alien language here.’ And then I come up with the sounds, and then the editors put in whatever they want,” Tudyk says. “And now that we’ve been to Comic‑Con, I’ve learned that I need to learn that so I can recite it on cue, and I promise to do that before my next Con.”
Tudyk has learned one important thing through his work on “Resident Alien”: he loves pizza. Because of numerous food allergies, Tudyk didn’t get to eat pizza. But, the alien is a big fan and that meant Tudyk had to find a way to consume multiple slices.
He credits the prop department and chefs with coming up with a safe way for him to eat pizza. He now looks forward to days when pizza is on his acting menu.
Along with Tudyk, the cast of “Resident Alien” includes Sara Tomko, Corey Reynolds, Alice Wetterlund and Levi Fiehler. The popularity of the series has earned the series a renewal for a third season of 12 episodes. There is no information on when that season will launch but the plan is to air it as one season and not split it the way season two was divided.