Comic-Con: The creators of Lost, Chuck, Gossip Girl, Sarah Connor and Pushing Daisies talk genre TV

By Mike

July 27, 2008 Television No comments

One of the main panels I wanted to attend at Comic-Con was Entertainment Weekly’s Visionaries group which featured the brilliant minds behind Lost, Chuck/Gossip Girl, Pushing Daisies and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.

The topic of discussion was genre television and how these guys are at the forefront of change in storytelling on the small screen and what is happening with their individual series.

It was an entertaining panel and you can tell these guys all respect each other and interact on different levels. They joked around like old friends and bantered playfully.

There were a few items worth noting that came from these discussions, some of them I’ve already written about in the Chuck article, but here’s a few of the others.

- Pushing Daisies will be picking up 10 months after the last episode, everyone will have kept all their secrets and are all ready to explode from holding them inside.

There will be a three minute or so introduction of what the show is all about for new viewers that never saw the first season because ABC said no to a “previously on.”

There is also going to be an additional character on the show: A pig. Only on Pushing Daisies

The creator of the show, Bryan Fuller, was the unique one on the panel. Where everyone deals with mysteries, robots, spies and explosions, his show is about pie, happiness and love.

It was just refreshing to hear this guy describe what he loves. He talked about how he came up with the idea:

“I am a very sensitive soul, and I couldn’t do a series like CSI or Criminal Minds where you have to be in a negative head space all the time, and think about the most negative parts of humanity, because that’s just depressing.”

“I just wanted to cram a show with as many things that make me smile as possible. Like doggies…and pie. Bees and honey. I was just literally shoehorning all the things in that I liked to smile over.”

Josh Schwartz from Chuck asked him the burning question: “Why pie? Why not cake?”

“Cake is dry, it’s a big gamble. Sometimes it’s moist, sometimes it’s not. Pie is ALWAYS moist.”

The man has a point.

- Chuck begins with our favorite spy being dangled off the roof of a building, and then the episode will explain how he got there. Schwartz said he’s treating it almost like a new pilot because of the time they’ve been off the air.

He made a comment about it taking place two years after the last episode, but I wasn’t clear on whether he was joking or not. I’m leaning towards joking.

The Buy More crew all became cast regulars this season.

- Sarah Connor will start TWO SECONDS after the last episode with the car explosion that involved Cameron, according to Josh Friedman.

- The Lost guys (Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse) didn’t reveal much in this panel, but did promise that there would definitely be another viral campaign this summer much like we had in last year. It seemed like it was still in the works and not yet completed.

Lindelof also answered a question from the moderator about some of his influences for Lost. The big one was the graphic novel Watchmen.

“For me, comic books were the closest thing to the kind of storytelling that I love. You read a story, the story ends, but with the cliffhanger, you have to wait a month. Then the story continues.”

“That kind of serialized, ongoing narrative is really exciting. A comic book like Watchmen, that I read during a very formidable time in my creative life, the idea of telling a story out of order, using flashbacks the way Alan Moore did, how condensed the universe was…the idea when we were creating the Lost verse, I think comic books like Watchmen and The Dark Knight Returns were essential.”

“People will swallow a tremendous amount of story if you feed it to them the right way”

He then looked down the table at Bryan, and added: “In pie form.”