Seth MacFarlane on ‘The Orville’ return, Carrie Fisher and the ‘destructive’ Fox News

After a successful first-season mission, Fox’s “The Orville” orbits back for Season 2 Sunday (8 EST/5 PST, following an NFL game).

With the possibility of a turbocharged ratings boost from NFL coverage that precedes it, series creator and star Seth MacFarlane (“Family Guy,” “Ted”) plans to reintroduce the series to potential new fans and those who haven’t seen a new episode since last December.

“The first episode is a reacquaintance with the crew,” including his U.S.S. Orville character, Capt. Ed Mercer, he says. “We’ve been off the air for a little while” – a year, to be precise – “and hopefully by the end (viewers) will feel like (the show) never left.”

MacFarlane, a multitalented former Oscars host who produces, writes, acts and sings, chatted with USA TODAY about “The Orville” and other projects. But he declined to answer questions about sexual misconduct allegations aimed at Neil deGrasse Tyson, host of MacFarlane’s other space project, “Cosmos,” and whether that will affect the series.

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