Halston Sage as Lt. Alara Kitan of THE ORVILLE.

Is Halston Sage leaving the cast of The Orville?

In the S2:E3 episode Home, Lt. Alara Kitan suffered a predictable and preventable health problem. Lt. Kitan is Xelayan, from a high gravity planet, making her physically stronger than humans Since most of the Orville‘s crew are from Earth, the ship’s gravity is set at Earth normal. Alara begins adapting to the lower gravity. losing the strength that made her Security Chief at such a young age.

She should, of course, have been exercising in a high gravity environment several times a week. For some reason, the CMO, Dr. Claire Finn, had not ordered this precaution, so Alara is sent to Xelaya to recuperate at home.

Klingon and Hologram
Robert Picardo as The Doctor in Star Trek: Voyager, with costar
Roxann Dawson as Lt. Torres.

Xelayan culture values brain over brawn, and joining the military is not a respected career choice. Her father, Professor Ildis Kitan (played by Robert Picardo) makes it clear he wants his daughter to resign her commission and return to college. The groundwork for this is all established in the 2017 episode Firestorm, where Professor Kitan makes it clear he regards Alara as a slow, backward child.

Spoilers Beyond This Point.

HERE BE SPOILERS: By the end of the episode, when Dr. Finn has figured out a way for Alara to safely return to the Orville, Alara decides to stay on her home planet and repair the dysfunctional relationship she has with her parents and older sister. It apears that Halston Sage is leaving the cast, just as Alara Kitan is leaving the ship’s crew.

Home was written by Cherry Chevapravatdumrong and was directed by
Jon Cassar.

We know why Alara is staying on a planet that bores her with people who don’t respect her, but why is Halston Sage leaving the show? According to the website TVtropes.com, Sage and Seth Macfarlane were dating, but recently broke up. It’s possible that there was some sort of scheduling conflict. Sage did recently finish filming a romantic comedy called The Last Summer, and the filming for that may have conflicted with filming for The Orville, though we can’t imagine how a low budget romcom could possibly draw her away from a high profile gig like a popular TV series.

David A. Goodman, Brannon Braga, and Jon Cassar were asked point blank in Comic Con 2018 if Halston Sage was still on the show and if a new character from Alara’s homeworld, named Szohr, was possibly taking her place. See their reaction below, from Lisa Steinberg’s YouTube channel (go subscribe) starting at 8:39:

Alara Kitan may make a return later in the season. Halston Sage is listed as starring in her signature role for the entire second season of The Orville on IMDB, so something odd is definitely in the works.

Will you be watching The Orville next Thursday? We can’t wait to find out what happens next.

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