Defiance Information

Defiance is an upcoming American science fiction television series developed for television by Rockne S. O'Bannon, Kevin Murphy, and Michael Taylor. The series is being produced in collaboration with Trion Worlds who are producing a Defiance MMO video game which will be connected to the series. Defiance stars Grant Bowler as Joshua Nolan, the local lawman in a border town known as Defiance. The series will be broadcast in the United States on the cable channel Syfy, and is being produced by Universal Cable Productions.

Defiance is set to premiere Monday, April 15, 2013 at 9:00 p.m. Eastern/8:00 p.m. Central.


The series is set in the near future, where aliens known collectively as Votans have come to Earth seeking a new home after their star system was destroyed. However, upon reaching Earth they found that they were not welcome. The Votans waited in orbit for six years as prolonged negotiations with Earth governments for settlement on the planet ultimately proved fruitless. With supplies on their ships running low, eventually in desperation the Votans began a war with humans to force the issue and make Earth their new home. During the war, Votan ships were mysteriously destroyed, rained down on Earth and accidentally released terraformer technology, which made haphazard and radical changes to the biosphere and even the geology of Earth, making the planet dangerous to both humans and the aliens. The earth was scorched, chasms opened in the ground, and the surface of the planet was covered with dust and debris. After decades of war, both sides had fought to the point of mutual exhaustion, and a ceasefire was declared. Few organized governments remained for either the humans or the aliens, and both sides factionalized as their members began looking out for themselves. In several areas, local human and Votan militias began to band together when they realized that they had to cooperate if they hoped to survive on this new, almost alien planet.

The series largely revolves around the character of Joshua Nolan. Nolan was only ten years old when the Votans arrived and he served in the military during the war. With the war now over, he returns to his hometown of St. Louis to find that it is no longer the city he left; it is little more than a border town renamed "Defiance". Deciding that his services are needed, Nolan takes up a position as the Chief Lawkeeper in Defiance, so he can protect the town from dangerous clashes between humans and aliens, military scavengers and other dangerous visitors who occasionally enter the town.


The Votans are not a single species, but a collection of seven different alien species who evolved on separate planets in the Votan star system. The different races banded together to flee their star system when their sun went nova, and ultimately arrived at Earth. The Votan star system went nova 5,000 years ago, but the millions of Votans who fled in ark-ships made the long interstellar journey in hypersleep, thus many of the older Votan characters were born in their home star system and lived under their old social structures before they had to evacuate. For example, older Castithans such as Datak and Stahma grew up in the caste-based society on their old homeworld, but younger Castithans born on Earth grew up after the Castithan social hierarchy broke down when they lived as refugees. Thus there is something of a generational divide between those Castithans who immigrated to Earth, who possess an older value set, and their first generation children raised on Earth.

  • Castithan: One of the more prominent races in the series, the Castithan appear very similar to humans. Their coloration is very pale, however, verging on albinism, with pale white skin, white hair, and pale yellow eyes. The Castithan society is deeply religious and spiritual. The Castithans used to have a patriarchal, rigidly segregated caste-based society on their home planet, though this has broken down somewhat among the survivors on Earth due to the harsh conditions of the war and its aftermath. Datak Tarr, co-founder of Defiance (in the former location of St. Louis) is a Castithan, from one of the lower castes. His wife, Stahma Tarr, is from one of the Castithan higher castes. As a member of the lower castes, Datak possesses more egalitarian values, striving to work with other races through sharing of power to achieve mutual defense. As a member of the higher castes which benefited from the old patriarchical hierarchy, Stahma feels that their family should acquire more power for itself. However, this very ideology insists that it is not a woman's place to seize power, thus Stahma is faced with goading Datak into taking more aggressive measures so that he (and by extension, she) will possess more power. The Castithan language is created by linguist David J. Peterson, developer of the Dothraki language used in Game of Thrones.
  • Indogene: the most technologically advanced Votan race. They have bright white skin and no visible hair follicles. Their heads are hairless and smooth; their external ears don't really protrude, smoothly merging with the rest of the head. They have hexagonal shaped irises, and their skin is covered in faint hexagon-shaped scales; even their written language is based on hexagon shapes. As the most scientifically advanced Votan race, they have been upgraded with numerous genetic and cybernetic implants (which are often not externally visible). Culturally, they tend to be technical geniuses and intellectuals.
  • Irathient: A near-human race with an affinity for nature and adept at tribal warfare, described as almost feral marauders. Their coloration is more similar to humans than the pale Castithans, with brightly colored hair and white markings on their faces (which might be cultural decoration, not biological). However, the proportions of their facial features are slightly different from humans (and the human-like Castithans), with a wider bridge of the nose arcing towards the eyes, and very large multi-colored irises. David J. Peterson also developed the full Irathient language.
  • Liberata: slightly shorter than humans, they have with blockier facial features. They have long scruffy yellow hair. They are described as a servant-class race. Their language includes a high frequency of slang terms.
  • Sensoth: slightly larger and taller than humans, they basically resemble a more humanoid orangutan. Their bodies are covered in reddish-brown fur, except on their faces, which have grayish skin. Their jaws protrude further forward than on humans, like apes (actors playing Sensoth characters have remote-controlled prosthetic appliances attached to their heads to achieve this effect).
  • Gulanee: An energy based race.
  • Volge: A race of automatons, disliked by the other Votan races.
An eighth Votan race did exist, but are believed to have died out when the Votan star system was destroyed, either because they were still trapped on their home planet or because they did not survive the journey to Earth.


  • Grant Bowler as Joshua Nolan, a former Marine and the Chief Lawkeeper of Defiance.
  • Julie Benz as Amanda Rosewater, the Mayor of Defiance.
  • Tony Curran as Datak Tarr, a Castithan and the right hand and chief advisor to Amanda.
  • Jaime Murray as Stahma Tarr, Datak's wife she is also a Castithan.
  • Stephanie Leonidas as Irisa Nyira, an Irathient warrior who is Nolan's adopted daughter and serves as his deputy.
  • Mia Kirshner as Kenya Rosewater, the self-assured, dauntless town madam.
  • Graham Greene as Rafe McCawley, the owner and operator of "the largest mine in the territory".
  • Fionnula Flanagan as Nicolette "Nicky" Riordon, the ex-mayor and trusted mentor of Amanda.

Series overview

Seasons of Defiance
Season Episodes Originally aired DVD and Blu-ray release date
Season premiere Season finale Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
1 13


No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
U.S. viewers
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Development and production

In June 2011, Syfy announced that they would be producing a television series which was being developed by Rockne S. O'Bannon and would be produced by Universal Cable Productions. It was also announced that the TV series would be connected to a video game being produced by Trion Worlds. It was later confirmed that Syfy had ordered thirteen episodes for the show's first season, which would premiere in either late 2012 or the summer of 2013. In July 2012, the network announced that the series and game would debut in April 2013.

Casting announcements began in January 2012 with Grant Bowler first to be cast. Bowler plays Joshua Nolan, "the law keeper in a bustling frontier boomtown that is one of the new world's few oasis of civility and inclusion." On February 8, TVWise revealed profiles of five of the main characters. It was later reported that Gillian Anderson had been briefly considered by the show's producers to play either Amanda or Stahma, however, that casting did not move forward as they assumed she would not be interested in returning to episodic television. On March 8, 2012 it was announced that Jaime Murray, Julie Benz, Stephanie Leonidas and Tony Curran has been cast in the series. Jaime Murray plays Stahma Tarr "Datak's beautiful and proper wife", Julie Benz plays Amanda Rosewater, the mayor of Defiance, Stephanie Leonidas plays Irisa, "a beautiful warrior who is part of an alien race called the Irathients" and Tony Curran plays Datak Tarr, "the right hand to Amanda."

Production on the series began in April 2012 in Toronto.

As of Season 1, linguist David J. Peterson has developed two full languages for the different alien races, for the Castithans and the Irathients. Basic language sketches also exist for two of the other races, the Indogenes and the Liberata.


The Lawkeepers of Defiance utilize at least one heavily modified 2013 Dodge Charger. The vehicles have been fitted with a siren and police light built into the engine. They also feature wire grating over the windows for protection. The body of the vehicle is protected by metal bumpers made out of hollow steel tubing. The vehicles have been fitted with off-road suspension and tires for handling the rough terrain the Lawmakers have to face while upholding the law. The Chargers are only featured in the television series. In the video game adaptation, the players can drive the Dodge Challenger. Three are featured in the game; one red, one white, and one blue. They have the same modifications as the Chargers from the television series.

International broadcast

Country Network(s) Series premiere Timeslot
Showcase April 15, 2013 Monday 10:00pm
Syfy April 16, 2013 Tuesday 9:00pm
Syfy April 16, 2013 Tuesday 9:00pm
Syfy April 16, 2013 Tuesday 8:15pm

This webpage uses material from the Wikipedia article "Defiance_%28TV_series%29" and is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. Reality TV World is not responsible for any errors or omissions the Wikipedia article may contain.



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