Syfy is killing it. They may have moved to broader fare when they re-branded from “SciFi” to “Syfy” a decade ago but in the past few years they have returned to the classic science fiction and genre stories that defined them and their latest series KRYPTON looks to be a welcome addition. The series follows Superman’s grandfather, whose House of El was ostracized and shamed, as he fights to redeem his family’s honor and save his beloved world from chaos. The trailer centers on the grandfather, Seg-El, with his voice over telling the future DC hero of how his family lived to save their planet, and we see an exploded Krypton revert back to its fully-formed environment.
The minute and a half shows great action, drowning in CGI, and a grittier world that feels more at home in Rogue One or Firefly than in the Krypton we saw in Zach Snyder’s Man of Steel or even CW’s Supergirl. Visually and tonally it should fill the void left by the end of season two of The Expanse (Syfy’s strongest drama) and hold viewers over until the return of Wynonna Earp (Syfy’s current most beloved series).
The only thing in this trailer that doesn’t necessarily gel with the rest of Syfy’s lineup is the lack of women. Female viewers have been a massive part of what has turned Syfy into a watercooler network in the past few years and all of their hit series either feature a female at the center (Wynonna Earp, Van Helsing, Killjoys) or several female leads within a group with individual agency (The Expanse, The Magicians). Shows that don’t fit into these two molds struggle (see: Incorporated, though there were narrative issues as well). In this trailer we see a lot of people standing around while Seg is on the move and two women featured prominently but both through Seg’s male gaze. There’s some serious racial diversity lacking as well, but this trailer is playing coy outside of setting up the special effects and reminding us that Superman will one day rise, instead of letting us see the scope of characters.
The series is exciting though, not just for Syfy but for DC. While it’s connected to one of the world’s greatest superheroes, they have ample room to play and starting with the grandfather gives them plenty of seasons to cover. It gives flashbacks to Dune. I know many didn’t love the Syfy miniseries, but the multi-generational epic centered around a fallen royal house feels like it could exist in this world too. Hopefully, this series won’t have the shadow of Superman hanging over like Supergirl struggled with in season one, or timeline issues that diehard fans are quick to point out with Fox’s Gotham.
It can often feel like the various DC series across so many networks are working against one another, but Syfy and series creators have made a big splash with this first trailer to let it stand out on its own.
Emily J | TV Editor