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NYCC: Pandora cast talks end of first season, hopes for Season 2

By Donnie Lederer

The CW's Pandora just wrapped up its first season, and there's a lot to unwrap. Where do our characters go from here? We got some of those answers at New York Comic Con where cast and crew held a panel at the Javits Center. On hand were showrunner Mark A. Altman, executive producer Thomas P. Vitale, and cast members Priscilla Quintana (Jax), Tina Casciani (Tierney), Ben Radcliffe (Ralen), and Oliver Dench (Xander).

The panel started with a bit of a "secret origin story" for the show. Vitale talked about his relationship with Altman helped get the show off the ground, "Matt and I have known each other for close to 20 years. When I [decided to] become a producer, I read Mark's script and felt it was so different. Every episode had a meaning, a message. We then thought The CW was the perfect home for the show, and they've been very supportive thus far."

Moving to the cast, Quintana talked about her audition, "It was a taped audition, and it was between another girl and me. I was so happy when I was cast because I feel the role was made for me." Radcliffe's previous background helped to make changes to his character, Ralen. "I used to dance when I was younger, so I knew how to do backflips and gymnastics. At first, Ralen wasn't going to be known as being such a strong fighter, but we were able to incorporate my skills, and it was awesome."

Well, not always excellent. "One time, a stuntman wanted me to punch him in the shoulder for real. I asked, 'what do you mean? It will hurt.' He said, 'no, it won't it's like this,' and he punched me in my shoulder as hard as he could."

The discussion moved on to the season finale, with a cliffhanger revealing the return of Greg Li, who had died earlier in the season. When asked if they knew he was going to return, the cast said they felt the same kind of surprise the fans did. Altman elaborated on his process for this character, "I became friends with John [Harlan Kim, who plays Greg] at New York Comic Con a few years ago, and I asked him to play this part," said Altman, "I wanted to have a character the fans would fall in love with, then kill him right away. I was not expecting outcry I received."

Should the series continue, Altman asked the cast where they want to see their characters in the second season. Radcliffe wants Ralen to return home, "I want to go back to Zatar." Quintana wants to see growth in Jax's relationships, "I want to see Jax involved in an LGBTQ relationship next season."

As far as the continuing adventures of Pandora, that's up to the fans, "Reach out to the network and let them know how much you love the show," said Vitale. With The CW's reputation for listening to the fans and supporting their shows, giving Pandora a little love will help its chances.

Click here for SYFY WIRE’s full coverage of New York Comic Con 2019, including up-to-the-minute news, exclusive interviews, and videos.