Comic-Con formally began today with a little Intelligence. Though it was a bit less than promised. Showrunner Rene Echevarria was scheduled to appear today on the upcoming one-hour drama’s panel at Comic-Con but having departed the CBS show last week he was an obvious no-show this morning. Still creator/executive producer Michael Seitzman was there as were stars Josh Holloway, Meghan Ory and Marg Helgenberger and EP Tripp Vinson for what was one of the opening panels of this year’s San Diego confab. Set to debut in February, Intelligence focuses on a U.S. Cyber Command unit that has been created around one agent Gabriel (Holloway). The agent has a microchip implanted in his brain that allows him to access the entire electromagnetic spectrum and the Internet.
The late starting panel opened with a special effect heavy and action packed preview of the first episode of the series. The show started with Holloway sneaking up on a satellite dish in the Himalayas to mentally tap into data and depictions of a terrorist attack and then being taken captive in a Pakistani military base – which of course he escaped from. It then shifted to Cyber Command where CSI alumni Helgenberger, who was walking around the Con yesterday, was introduced as Cyber Command director Lillian Stand. Once Upon A Time regular Ory plays Riley O’Neil, a Presidential detail Secret Service Agent assigned to protest the Gabriel character. I won’t say anymore except to add that a kidnapping of a top scientist by rogue Chinese operatives and paintball figure prominently in the episode. Echevarria’s name was among the EPs in the opening credits of the preview show. The packed Ballroom 20 loved the preview and they really loved it when former Lost star Holloway walked out for the panel.
Overall, the panel was pretty light with the stars and producers bantering about the influence of the Six Million Dollar Man on the show and what they would do with the Gabriel character’s ability. There was no mention of Echevarria or his absence. The clearly in control Seitzman hinted that a romance could develop between the Gabriel and O’Neill characters even though the former’s search for his missing operative wife is a major plot point of the pilot. The EP also said the Amelia character, Gabriel’s spouse, would appear later in the series but he remained tight-lipped about any further twists or future villains on the show. Holloway did have a take on the relevance of the series in today’s cultural and political environment. “It’s a dramatic thriller with hot strong woman characters with a mix of Bourne, James Bond and Mission Impossible characters and this is very current with everything that is going on today. This is new technology today. This is current this is happening now,” said Holloway about the show and its premise.