For All Mankind executive producers Ronald D. Moore and Maril Davis discuss the big leap from season 2 and the intense themes of the Cold War.
The acclaimed Apple TV + original series For all mankindThe second season will advance in time to 1983, with Cold War tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union reaching a fever pitch under the Reagan Administration. And with the space race continuing in the show’s alternate history long after the moon landing, the reach of the military has spread across the cosmos.
In an exclusive interview with CBR, series co-creator Ronald D. Moore and executive producer Maril Davis discuss jumping into the 80s for season 2, increasing the military presence in the story, and teasing what to expect as the series progresses into the future.
In Season 2, we went through nine years of the happy days of the space race and into the 80s. Why did you want to go so far in this alternate story you created?
Ronald D. Moore: From the beginning, the idea was to do the space program that we were promised but we couldn’t and see it flourish. And the only way to really tell that story is to do it over the years and decades because if you keep the show in the 1970s you would only get so far and I wanted to see this show grow and develop big changes and lunar bases and space stations. Y [go to] Mars and so on.
So from the beginning, part of the concept of the show was that every season, we were going to skip about a decade or so, which would take us to the 80s, which was an interesting time. Reagan is president, the Cold War is heating up, and the space program has been dragged into the military confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United States.
To take advantage of that, you guys are getting darker this season, with the military-industrial complex coming into space. What did you really want to do with season 2 compared to season 1?
Moore: Like we said when we were planning the show in general, after [we’ve caught] With the Soviets and putting women in space and establishing a lunar base, then the arrival of Reagan and the Cold War, it felt much more natural that you had a militarized component in NASA. NASA and the military were united from the beginning. There was always a very strong bond between the two, and that meant the story could get a lot bigger as we hit the 80s. So we said season 2 will be a piece of the Cold War.
Maril, what was something you were interested in adding with your voice to this alternate story on the show?
Maril Davis: I think that for me, certainly in the first season, I felt that it was so important that the female voice be heard. I think we were all so distraught to see that the Mercury 13 program for female astronauts was shelved and never came to fruition. I think it was important for us to realize the desire of those women to go into space. And I think in season 2 even more, we see that women are coming to the forefront. Not only women but also in [overall] diversity, it was important for us to see that there was inclusion, not just in season 1, but in the future, because the alternate reality was not just in terms of technology but also in terms of a more inclusive society.
Created by Ronald D. Moore, Matt Wolpert, and Ben Nedivi, For All Mankind stars Joel Kinnaman, Michael Dorman, Sarah Jones, Shantel VanSanten, Wrenn Schmidt, Jodi Balfour, Krys Marshall, Sonya Walger, Cynthy Wu, Coral Peña, and Casey. W. Johnson. Season 2 premieres on Apple TV + on February 19.
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