Guillermo del Toro compares ‘The Strain’s’ timeline to ‘The Simpson’s’

Guillermo del Toro, left, Carlton Cuse, Chuck Hogan, Corey Stoll, David Bradley, Mia Maestro and Kevin Durand at "The Strain" panel during FX's TCA presentation.

Guillermo del Toro, left, Carlton Cuse, Chuck Hogan, Corey Stoll, David Bradley, Mia Maestro and Kevin Durand at “The Strain” panel during FX’s TCA presentation.

(Richard Shotwell / Invision/AP)

The cast and crew of FX vampire show “The Strain” -- Carlton Cuse, Guillermo del Toro, Chuck Hogan, Corey Stoll, David Bradley, Kevin Durand and Mia Maestro -- gathered onstage to address the Television Critics Assn.'s many questions. And writer, producer and director Del Toro used “The Simpson’s” to squash pressing concerns about the odd response fictional New York has had to its vampire outbreak.

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On the odd/lack of response from New York City police and government:

Two members of the TCA audience pressed the show creators and cast about the timing and response rate in New York. If the city is truly being attacked by a vampire-causing infection, where was the response from the officials or the government?


Cuse addressed it first, “There is dislocation in New York, but there is not full-scale social demise yet. It sort of progresses across this season and the next season of the show,” said Cuse. “I think that there is a lot of willful denial. And people who are trying to go about their lives in New York. It’s kind of a mixed bag at this point.”

Del Toro chimed in, “It’s a matter of days; it’s not six weeks ago, eight weeks ago. The first season and the second season you have a year.… The burning of the buildings is happening (essentially) in a matter of days. The quarantine is closing the city. It’s happening very, very fast. The fact that it’s across 13 episodes, it follows the same timeline as ‘The Simpsons’ years. Why does Bart not age and is 45 and have a drug addiction problem? We have 13 hours of television. That could all be happening in six days, 10 days, 11 days. It’s hard to do it without tracking it with ‘Day 1, Day 2.’ At some point, we contemplated doing that. We thought it would be great to end the first season with buildings burning and going to a title that says, ‘Day 6.’ But we abandoned that. I don’t even remember why.”

Full coverage: Television Crtitics Association press tour 2015

There will only be five seasons of “The Strain,” period.

As for the rest of the seasons, the whole crew has a very specific timeline in place for this television translation of Chuck Hogan’s work. There will be five seasons, and that is all.

“We’re very happy to be picked up for Season 3, which will be 10 episodes,” said Cuse. “And Seasons 4 and 5 will be 10 episodes and that will be the end.… from the very beginning we talked about the first book will be the first season, the second book will be the second two seasons and the third book will be the last two seasons. So we’ve kind of stuck to that game plan.”

Sorry people, no more, no less. Well, maybe less; they still have to get Seasons 4 and 5 picked up.

On the loss of the wig.


Another hot issue was the makeup change-up that happened to main character Ephraim Goodweather (played by Corey Stoll). In Season 2 the wig that sparked much online commentary has been cut. This was on purpose.

“I think it was pretty clear that me having hair was a distraction to the audience,” said Stoll.

The audience seemed pretty pleased with the end result as well.

As for the upcoming episodes, anything can happen. Del Toro even teased a visit to ancient Rome via flashback in one of the upcoming episodes.



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