With the second series of Under the Dome soon to reach its chilling conclusion on UK television, there was a large audience in attendance for the Under the Dome panel at MCM London Comic Con this year. Featured on the all-female panel were actors Aisha Hinds (Carolyn Hill), Mackenzie Lintz (Elinore “Norrie” Calvert-Hill) and Grace Victoria Cox (Melanie Cross).
Questions began with the obvious elephant of the series – the dome itself – and whether the actors wanted the series to end with the characters finally escaping it or remaining trapped inside forever. Hinds remarked that her character has developed useful skills and behaviour whilst being trapped under the dome. She described both Norrie and herself as being “homebody” types, preferring to be at a fixed destination over the stress of a journey, citing her flight from LA to London as “10 hours of personal hell”. She concluded that, whether or not Norrie and all other characters do indeed escape, they’ve all learnt valuable lessons.
The next questions from the audience were about whether it was difficult for the actresses to remain true to their characters in the ongoing transition of the book into the television show. Stephen King serves as executive producer for Under the Dome, alongside Steven Spielberg and Stacey Snyder. Interestingly, Stephen King wrote the first episode for the second series. Lintz commented on Stephen King‘s known love for twists and turns in his literary work and how, given the opportunity to create something new with the Under the Dome title, the series has not stayed entirely true to the book. Continuing in this thread, Hinds pointed out that not all of the characters in the book made it onto the screen, although the book is filled with interesting characters.
A controversial question was posed next when an audience member asked how about the actresses felt about the idea that the show was essentially a battle of the sexes and what it was like to play such strong female characters. The actresses all warily regarded each other before answering. Cox argued that her character, Melanie, is not really a strong character, but rather a weak character that is slowly growing stronger. Lintz agreed that Melanie had faced a turning point in adapting to survival and living under the dome, as had all the characters. Hinds added that Carolyn’s personality has brought a new dimension to a female-heavy cast by being a strong character with obvious flaws.
The penultimate question lightheartedly asked the actresses who, out of all the characters in the show, they would team up with to survive if they found themselves trapped under the dome. Cox immediately answered that she didn’t mind who she was paired with “…as long as I – I mean, Melanie – can keep kissing cute boys.” Hinds and Lintz both giggled, with Hinds saying that she’d want to team up with Dale “Barbie” Barbara (Mike Vogel).
Ending on a jovial note, the last question from the audience asked who was winning at the amount of ‘meows’ during their panels. The actresses roared with laughter with Lintz declaring that this was the first time they’d ever been asked this question, as the cast had never spoken before about this in-joke that they had to keep them alert during panels. With renewed aplomb to possibly sneak this phrase into the show, no winner was declared.
Under the Dome is currently showing in the UK on Mondays at 10pm on Channel 5. Earlier this month, Under the Dome was renewed for a third series, which is set to air next year.