Apoc­a­lypse new

Me­te­ors, dis­ease, de­mons... James Tup­per re­veals the topsy-turvy world of new Syfy se­ries Af­ter­math

SFX - - Red Alert -

With so many apoc­a­lypse-themed shows on tele­vi­sion at the mo­ment, it seems un­likely that anyone could find a new take on this well-ex­plored sub­genre. Nonethe­less, Syfy will at­tempt that with its new sci­ence fic­tion-meets-su­per­nat­u­ral se­ries Af­ter­math. The show de­buts this au­tumn and isn’t go­ing to tell a typical end-of-days story, ac­cord­ing to star James Tup­per (Re­venge). “It’s a lit­tle bit of Raiders Of The Lost Ark mixed with a fam­ily sit­com,” he says. “It’s re­ally fresh in terms of the idea of the show.”

Tup­per plays Joshua Copeland, a univer­sity pro­fes­sor in­ter­ested in an­cient re­li­gions. While try­ing to sur­vive with his three chil­dren and wife, Karen, a for­mer mil­i­tary pilot, Copeland in­ves­ti­gates the mys­tery be­hind the events sur­round­ing the col­lapse of world or­der. The part is a dream come true, says Tup­per, who has al­ways wanted to play an ac­tion hero. Yet he re­veals that, in a re­ver­sal of tra­di­tional roles, it will be Karen, played by his real-life spouse Anne Heche, who does most of the ass-kick­ing. “She never walks through a door, for in­stance. She just boots it open,” says Tup­per. How the Copelands’ tight bonds help them han­dle a va­ri­ety of dan­gers will be one of the main themes of Af­ter­math, ex­plains co-cre­ator Wil­liam Lau­rin (Al­fred Hitch­cock Presents). “They come in lov­ing each other and so as the shock mounts, it has a dou­ble im­pact. One is the im­pact that you get out of ter­ri­fy­ing events and the other is, ‘God, that’s hap­pen­ing to my mum!’” Where the dys­func­tional re­la­tion­ships in Fear The Walk­ing Dead are a mi­cro­cosm of the break­down of civil­i­sa­tion, the Copelands will be a source of op­ti­mism. “The world is fall­ing to pieces but we have a sense that some­how, pos­si­bly, it could be sur­vived if you make the right choices and you learn the right knowl­edge,” Lurin says. “It’s not at all a ni­hilis­tic show, which most apoc­a­lypse shows are.”

Af­ter­math will pre­miere on Syfy in the US later this year.

Some­thing worse than a traf­fic war­den may have caught their at­ten­tion.

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