We’ve talked a lot about how Syfy seems to making a serious effort to turn itself around and become a serious player in the realm of scripted genre entertainment, as opposed to primarily a peddler of original B-movies and so-called “reality” programming that doesn’t pass the sniff test. As hopeful as we are about upcoming Syfy projects such as Ascension and The Expanse, there’s one that still has us very dubious: their series adaptation of Terry Gilliam’s time-travel classic 12 Monkeys. Now Syfy has revealed a very brief look at their version of 12 Monkeys, courtesy of the preview video above.
Syfy typically puts together this sort of “coming soon” montage for their upcoming lineups, and with Defiance and Dominion both having just kicked off their new seasons, the network dropped the above trailer to help hype both of those shows, as well as the upcoming returns of Helix and Haven, and their fall “event series” Ascension. You can see a few 12 Monkeys moments we’ve heard described before beginning around the 30-second mark.
You see Cole (Aaron Stanford) fiddling with a pair of watches. We know that at one point Cole uses the watches to try and convince medical researcher Cassie Reynolds (Amanda Schull) that he really is from the future. See, both watches belong to Cassie, but the one Cole is carrying was given to him by Cassie…in the future. Apparently he damages the “present” watch so Cassie can see how the “future” watch instantaneously inherits that damage. It’s a clever little way of demonstrating one way Syfy’s 12 Monkeys skews away from the movie: here Cole isn’t just trying to discover the source of the epidemic that resulted in his apocalyptic future — he’s trying to prevent it, Terminator style.
The other footage shows dudes in biohazard suits torching trenches full of bodies, Cole traveling through time and declaring that everyone is “already dead,” and a reveal of the logo of the Army of the 12 Monkeys, a mysterious group that will supposedly be much more in the series than the red herring they were in Gilliam’s 1995 film. You can read up on the details we know about Syfy’s 12 Monkeys in this earlier piece.
The preview video also name-checks Syfy’s much-anticipated adaptation of James S.A. Corey’s Expanse series, which began with 2011’s Leviathan Wakes. There’s no official premiere date for the 10-episode first season, which will adapt that first book, but we’re keeping our fingers crossed that we’ll get to see it sometime in 2015. As far as I can tell there’s no actual footage from Syfy’s The Expanse in the trailer up top, but that’s to be expected this early in the project’s production. 12 Monkeys is expected to premiere later this year.