“Sense8,” the sexy sci-fi series created by Andy and Lana Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski, hasn’t officially received a season two renewal. But that hasn’t stopped the producers and cast from reveling in the first season’s devout fanbase and enjoying any speculation about more episodes.
“We’re still awaiting word [about season two], and we’re cautiously optimistic, but it’s Netflix’s call,” Straczynski told reporters on Tuesday at the show’s Television Critics Association panel.
And do they have a long-term plan for the intricate plots in the series?
“The way that the Wachowskis and I tend to work — we created the show together and we are running the show together — we are long-thinking people,” he said. “We look down the road and we say to ourselves, ‘Where is this going to go?’ … Season one is like an origin story and season two has some particular arc and we figure it out from there. But to spoil that here would not be the best interest of the surprise at the end.”
Continuity wasn’t exactly the easiest thing to work out, given that “Sense8” deals with people living in different parts of the world.
“As we broke out the story, we had the characters in Chicago,” said Straczynski. “We had these huge metal boards with all their plot information and character. So it was characters going this way, timeline going that way, working out every single character arc, covering the entire walls with this. And we had just finished up pretty much the entire thing. And I looked at the walls, and I go, ‘Oh, crap.’ Lana said, ‘What?’ I said, “Time zones,” because if Nomi is in San Francisco and needs help from Sun, she’s asleep. So how is this go going to work out? Had to break it all down. We put clocks in the room to track everything by time zones.”
He added that the show’s scenes now go “from day to night to day to night to afternoon to morning.”
The panelists also addressed the show’s sometimes graphic sex scenes, including an orgy scene.
“We wanted to do a show that was really for adults and grownups,” said Straczynski. “There’s a tendency for science fiction to be seen as something other than for adults. It tends to be the McGuffin, the device, the gadget, the gimmick, the mission and not the journey so much. And we thought we want to make this show about the journey. We want to make it about adults, deal with adult issues transgenderism, identity, privacy all these things that are right now the topic of discussion.”
The show also broke ground by not only having a transgender character, which is the TV troupe du jour, but also finding a different way to focus on her.
“There has never been a trans character in a movie or on a show before that didn’t revolve around his or her transition,” said Jamie Clayton, who plays the character. “No one cares because, at the end of the day, we shouldn’t care that she’s trans.”