Just the simple fact that CBS’ upcoming sci-fi drama Extant stars Academy-Award-Winning actress Halle Berry and is produced by Steven Spielberg is enough to pique the interest of many casual fans. The network could easily have sat back and rested on its laurels, relying on the name recognition alone to draw in an audience, but they’re taking a much more aggressive approach. They’ve already issued a number of teasers and a series of trailers where each one gets a little bit longer, adds a little bit more, and expands on what came earlier. This latest, longest look at the series follows this established pattern.
Like I said, this footage takes what we’ve already seen and broadens the scope. Astronaut Molly Watts returns from a yearlong solo mission in space. Spending so much time lone in such an isolated environment can play hell with your mind, so some adjustment upon arrival is to be expected. But this is no minor fine-tuning and just getting used to being in a place with gravity.
See, Molly is pregnant. How does that happen when there’s no one around? Does, as the tagline says, life find a way? There’s also the added fact that she’s barren and never been able to conceive before. Is she lying, did something happen, what the hell is going on? These questions are going to be the center of the mystery we see unfold. This video gives us the first glimpse at who, or what, may have knocked her up while orbiting beyond the Earth’s atmosphere. He looks human enough, but Molly’s supposedly the only one in an empty space station, so you know something is afoot.
Back on Earth there appears to be some kind of sprawling conspiracy in effect, both with in the government and outside. She apparently exhibited some suspicious behavior, some people claim to know what happened to her, while others seem to want to experiment on her and examine her like a rat in a lab.
Out of everything in this trailer, the most interesting bits revolve around Molly’s son Ethan (Pierce Gagnon). We knew he was an android, created by her husband John (Goran Visnjic) because they couldn’t have children of her own. This is the first actual glimpse we see of that, when John pops open a hatch—no euphemism—and checks on the battery. You also get the sense that he’s not quite as normal as he has appeared before, and you see him being creepy with dead animals. If he were a human kid you’d have him marked down as a future serial killer.
You also realize the strain not having to have their own child has put on their marriage. John is the one who created Ethan, and he definitely views him as his real son, not a machine. Molly, on the other hand, is hung up on the artificial nature of the boy, saying what appears as love is nothing but a “series of commands” programmed into his CPU. That is going to cause a problem.
Extant also stars Louis Gossett Jr., Camryn Manheim, Michael O’Neill, and Grace Gummer, and premieres on CBS on July 2 .