Ascension is a three-night event that premieresMonday, December 15 at 9/8c on Syfy.
It’s a good morning for Havenites! Syfy has announced that William Shatner will be joining the cast next year as a recurring guest. Seeing as Shatner hails from Montreal, it’s not surprising he wants to spend sometime in that part of the world. Lucky us! We also got some new pics for episode 513 – the “midseason finale.”
Syfy also gave a sneak peek at the plot lines for the final two episodes of 2014. Here’s what they say:
In “Chemistry” (airing November 28), divided loyalties put Haven’s heroes at odds with one another, while a terrifying revelation changes everything. Jay Reso – also known as WWE Superstar Christian Cage – appears in the episode, reuniting with his real-life, lifelong friend and former tag-team partner, Adam Copeland (WWE Superstar Edge Rated R), who plays Dwight. In a recurring guest role, Reso will play McHugh, one of Dwight’s oldest and closest friends.
Then, in the mid-season finale “Chosen” (December 5), a shocking revelation threatens to upend the fragile stability of Haven. Mara’s endgame is finally revealed, while Audrey (Emily Rose) and Nathan (Lucas Bryant) pursue a plan to stop her once and for all.
If you love a dark, brooding, super hero (who would reject that moniker), then you should already be watching Constantine. If you love monsters and the supernatural, you definitely don’t want to miss Constantine. OHSOGRAY recently joined a call with executive producers/writers David Goyer and Daniel Cerone to talk about all things Constantine.
Constantine airs on Fridays at 10/9c on NBC.
What made this the right time and the right platform to be involved in telling the Constantine story?
David S. Goyer: Oh. Well, I – the genesis of the project is that I had a meeting with Warner Bros. Television. This is sort of right after “Man of Steel” had come out and they asked the – if I would be interested in doing a television show based on a DC property. And so we just started having a general conversation about which one made most sense. In the first character, I asked about John Constantine. I’ve always been a huge fan. I was reading Swamp Thing when he was introduced. And, in fact, I have a letter printed in one of the early issues that he was introduced as a fan, I think when I was in high school or something like that. There were some sort of legal things to sort out initially and then we start talking about other characters. But eventually Constantine became free and I was really excited. The reason for why is the right time, I’ve done, obviously, in “The Dark Knight” film from Superman, sort of kind of [….] But one of the reasons why I always like John Constantine is he didn’t have superpowers, he didn’t have a costume […]. So it was refreshing for me to tell a story about an antihero as opposed to a hero and he is someone who was really damaged and I just feel like he’s one of the great characters of sort of modern literature and, I don’t know, it was a different change of pace, you know?
How far are we going to go into the Constantine mythos early on? Are you going to introduce a lot of familiar stuff in the comics? Obviously, we’ve seen Papa Midnite. And are there going to be more things like that?
Daniel Cerone: We’re digging as deeply into the Constantine mythos as we possibly can. I mean, in fact, it really is inspiring much of our storytelling. […] In a broader sense, look, over the course of the season, we’re breaking up 17 right now. We have a fantastic ride ahead. Before the end of the season, you’re going to meet and get to know every one of John’s friends from Newcastle that were involved in the sort of faithful exorcism of Astra that, you know, led to the torment – external torment of John’s soul. And so you’re going to meet them all. I mean, look, Papa Midnite, I think, we have now in four episodes. Jim Corrigan comes back for a couple of more. I’m reading an outline right now for Episode, what is it, 16 that includes Terence Thirteen with… […] We have Felix Faust. Yes. So we’re really trying to – you know, look, we have this incredible source material. We want to honor it and dig as deeply into it as we possibly can and, at the same time, look, we’re a weekly network show and we have weekly stories. We’re trying to present the best of both worlds in terms of ongoing mythology, with the Hellblazer and DC world but wrapped around weekly stories the viewers can hook into.
David S. Goyer: I would add one other thing, too, which is we read the responses to various episodes. I think we have three episodes so far and some people – I know that people seemed to really like the last episode that introduced Papa Midnite and – but some people said “Okay, so now we know what the formula is going to be week after week and we still haven’t heard much more about the rising darkness or Newcastle well.” Well, you’re about to with the fourth episode. We think that sort of the right time to do it, we’re not a fully serialized show. We’re kind of a hybrid between standalone and serialize. We’re going to start introducing more back story elements, you know, every few episodes or so.
Are we going to be getting any more episodes that might focus on Chas and his back story at some point?
David S. Goyer: Yes.
Daniel Cerone: Yes. We – Chas is an interesting character because in terms of – when David and I developed the show and sat down to figure out what characters do we want in a continuing basis. On one hand, Chas was a natural because he’s sort of the most constant companion and long living companion. Maybe the only living companion of John Constantine’s. And – but really he’s not much more than – he’s like the muscle and he’s the driver, you know? Been a cab driver and, you know, John didn’t drive a lot. I don’t think he drives at all in the comic book. We want to include Chas and he is definitely the strong, silent type, very laconic kind of character we wanted to roll out slowly. But there – and I know there’s been a couple of issues where they dig in his backstory but there’s not a lot there. We’ve really enjoyed Chas. We’ve really enjoyed opening him up. We will open him up deeper, Episode 10. You know, we came up with this idea, this notion because Chas is, you know, the comic don’t make a…let’s put it this way. In the pilot episode, you see that Chas comes back to life. For some reason, people started translating that to the idea that he’s mortal. We promise you he is not a mortal. There’s…
David S. Goyer: He’s not mortal.
Daniel Cerone: …very good reason that he’s coming back to life and the only spoiler I will give is that those lives are not infinte. We do have an episode that involves flashbacks where we basically tell that story and we get to know more about Chas, we can meet Renee and his daughter, Renee’s wife, ex-wife or they’re separated right now and his daughter and we kind of dig into that story and figure out what makes Chas tick.
David S. Goyer: I would add to that that I – I think when the first 13 episodes are down, people will be surprised at how much kind of background we filled in on various characters and even in terms of the relationship with John and Manny and Zed’s back story and it’s not just taste of the week.
How difficult of a decision was it for you guys to not carry on with the Liv story and is there a possibility that she’ll ever pop up again?
David S. Goyer: Honestly, it really wasn’t that difficult. It became apparent to us and, look, we’re glad you like her. I think she did a fantastic job. But I think that the character wasn’t – was flawed in its conception. We’re – obviously we’re to blame for that. She was the only major character in the pilot that wasn’t from the comic books and sometimes you make these concessions when you’re trying to get a show off and running and one of the benefits of doing a pilot is you’ve got this initial downtime after the pilot before you’re filming again in which you can think about retooling some aspects. Once we saw the character in action and we started breaking, Episodes 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6, we felt like we were just running into a lot of dead ends. That’s when we decided to go back to the source material and talking about character Zed and I will say I feel like that the vast majority of the audience seems to have felt that the Zed character was a better match for John and seems to have supported our decision.
Daniel Cerone: Yes. Look, in terms of… David and I received a lovely e-mail from Lucy Griffith, the actress who played Liv, right before we aired and, in terms of whether she’ll be back, she’s part of the foundation of the show. I mean the millhouse in which John is crashing and full of, you know, all kinds of magical antiquities, you know…
Daniel Cerone: Yes, that’s her father’s place. As we dig deeper into the season, as we start talking about possible arc for next season, there’s – I would say there’s an opening there. Whether it’s an opening we’ll step through or not, it would have to be organic, it would have to feel right and not feel like a device. But if there’s an organic reason to bring her back into the story, we’d love to.
How does the fan base help you develop the storylines you want to produce?
David S. Goyer: I’ve adopted quite a few comic book properties now. And it’s a – it’s tricky because I think you have to be really attentive to the fan base. What we talk about is – but at the same time […]. You can’t give the market what they say they want. You want to give them something that they haven’t even thought of. If you give them exactly what they want, they become disappointed by the same token. The way that we’ve always tried to measure it is that we’ve tried to dip in with the fans and be aware of what are the issues that are most important to them, what are the core concepts that are most important, with the characters what are the most important. But we, also cognizant of the fact that if the show is going to flourish and broaden its audience, we need to be able to respond to an audience greater than just the core comic book fans. And so it needs to work for both audiences. We weren’t new to the character.
Daniel Cerone: Not at all. We fell in love with all the things about John Constantine that the fans did. And – or at least based on what I’ve read of the fans. But look, we needed that smartass, wisecracking, like, just, you know, gallows humor, scruffy blonde-haired, trench coat-wearing, cigarette-smoking breath with a fatalistic attitude and this deeply humanist point of view for reasons that he doesn’t even understand. We like that character. That was someone that just appealed to us. So we’re going to be true to that no matter what. We wanted to stay true to the world and the characters. And then you take that foundation and you have to figure out, “Okay, how can we pour that into a show that can last and sustain itself on a weekly basis” and NBC had certain desires for the show. They wanted stories that were told every week. So as David mentioned before, this is a bit of a hybrid. I mean, for us, it was “Okay, how do we figure out how to both, you know, as fans, tell the story we want to tell about the evolution of this character and his relationships, you know, as well as some closed-end stories to broaden out the fan base?” So yes. We came out of it as fans.
David S. Goyer: To build on what Daniel said, because we were fans of the character, when we first met with NBC, we said “Look, you know, we know that the counter movie is out there and it wasn’t British and he didn’t have blonde hair” and I think that that movie had a lot of great attributes but because we had fallen in love with the John Constantine as depicted in the comic books, it was our mission, you know, to try to bring to life the character that as accurately reflected the character we had fallen in love with as possible. So when NBC says “Well, does he have to be British? Does he have to wear skinny tie in a trench coat? Does he have to be blonde? Does he have to smoke?” we said “Yes.” And they said “Why?” And we said “Because that’s the character we fell in love with.”
Daniel Cerone: I’ll say there every step of the way, they did ask those questions, too, like, they were very open and accepting and loving and they wanted to embrace the fans, too, but at a certain point, like when it came to casting, Matt Ryan does not have blonde hair. And initially, they’re like “Do we really need to lighten his hair” and we’re like “Yes we do.” They got the first draft of the script and they saw sort of all of the kind of British euphemisms and colloquialisms written into his dialog and they’re like “That might be off-putting. Does he really need to be British?” And we…
David S. Goyer: We said “Yes.”
Daniel Cerone: …he does. So at every step of the way, we fought for that. And to their credit, they were very open and they understood our passion and I believe the fans’ passion for the character.
David S. Goyer: But, to put a bow on it, how does the fans, how does the hopes and desires back burn to it, it’s important because we were fans of the character and have been fans of the character for decades ourselves. So we were really determined to try to bring to life, a version of Constantine that was accurate.
Constantine is not like Arrow, he’s not like The Flash, he’s kind of a different kind of hero/antihero. How does that factor into your writing and the portrayal of this character in order to still make people want to root for him? How do you make your antihero the hero?
David S. Goyer: Well, this is David speaking, first of all, I would say, I mean, there are heroes and there are antiheroes. And they’re both a lot of fun to write. But in some ways, writing antiheroes, antiheroes are more fun to write for because they’re not bound by the same moral code that the heroes are. In some ways, antiheroes are more human because most of us have variables. Most of us are imperfect. And, you know, he’s doing what he’s doing for fundamentally noble reasons but he doesn’t really have a code of conduct. I do think that audiences also like antiheroes. I mean, if you look at House, if you look at Luthor, if you look at Sherlock, I would categorize these characters more properly antiheroes than heroes. They can be fun. And different and it’s – they’re not operational. You don’t – people want to be them and people want to be Superman. I don’t think people want to be Constantine because he’s kind of a miserable thought. But he’s also fun. And it’s fun to – it’s a reverence and it’s just a different way to go.
Daniel Crone: A lot of characters that are out there are doing what they do because it’s their job or because I have a badge or because I have a calling. As David said, Constantine is doing the right thing but he’s doing it for totally humanist reasons, you know? It’s one of those fascinating aspects of the character to me is if you ask him why he’s out there helping humanity, I’m not even sure he can tell you.
David S. Goyer: Yes.
Daniel Cerone: He is doing it because he wants to save lives? Is he doing it because, frankly, chasing demons is a bit of a fix for him and he’s just challenging for the next kill? Is he doing it, as he said early in his career, for the women and to get laid? Is he doing it to, because it’s kind of self-empowerment? It’s just never really clear. What’s great about him is I don’t even think he’s clear. But yet, he keeps doing it and he keeps fighting this fight. And yes, as David said, one of the funest things is that there’s no code of conduct that he operates by. He’s doing the good things that all the cops and lawyers and whatever kind of other heroes are out there doing. But there’s no checks and balances for him. And that’s where he often gets into trouble. I think when you ask what makes him relatable, I think that’s it because he’s his own…he has a self-sense to himself and he frequently goes over the line and he frequently makes bad calls and the fact that Constantine, if you – anyone who gets close to Constantine dies. That has proven itself true for years in the comic books. Very early in our series, you’re going to see that, too, where he makes the hard calls and he loses friends over it, sometimes literally. That’s kind of his curse and it makes him, hopefully – hopefully, that’s what makes him – it’s easy to root for him.
David S. Goyer: I would also add that I think that these things are cyclical and I think that they come in waves and maybe it’s a common – a broader commentary on where we are in society right now. But the television landscape right now is, you know, it’s flourishing with the really flawed characters. For whatever reason, audiences are responding and fascinated by these flawed characters. It’s not so much – I think if you look at the television landscape now, it used to be that there were a lot of – the black hats were the black hats and white cats were the white cats and it was very clear who is who but there are a lot of shades of grey right now and that seems to be kind of, what’s happening with the right guys, in terms of the role.
While new comedies struggle to survive, one is plugging along and gaining a dedicated fan following. On a recent press call, OHSOGRAY asked show stars Ken Marino and Casey Wilson about the secret to success.
Marry Me airs Tuesday nights at 9/8c on NBC.
In describing this show to people, the word “cute” is often used. Is that an appropriate term or does that sound kind of juvenile?
Casey Wilson: I think it is cute. I think it’s – I hope – I think it’s also kind of subversive and has some heart. But I guess maybe if you combine those, we get cute. I’ll take it.
Ken Marino: That’s right. If subversive and heart ran into each other, they would make a cute baby.
Casey Wilson: …you know, at the end of the day we’re hoping it’s funny. But I do think – I think Ken and I and the rest of the cast – I think everyone really does have really great chemistry, which I think is probably why you’re feeling that way. So I think it’s good, yes. And I think it has to be the right chemistry and I think we did get lucky on the show.
Casey, how much of Casey is in Annie and how much of Annie’s in Casey?
Casey Wilson: Annie is a little more upbeat and probably friendlier than I am. No, I think there are definite similarities and I think I’m pretty emotional and I get big ideas and I want to see things through and kind of – they’re often wrong-headed ideas. But I feel as though I’m playing a character but you never know. Maybe I’m not. You’ll never know. Ken, do you want to tell them about your character process?
Ken Marino: Sure. I mean I have a whole process. There’s a big difference between me and Jake. I am actually six foot one. I’m 6-1. Jake is six foot. So every day I have to act an inch shorter on set. And sometime by…
Casey Wilson: It’s very expensive to dig those trenches.
Ken Marino: Yes. Well sometimes if I act too hard, I’m like – I’ll – they’ll get the (daily’s) back and I’ll be 5-8. And then we have to do a whole re-shoot where I have to act less. But, you know, the key to acting is less acting and just reacting. So when I get to the reacting part, I’m usually landing – I’m usually coming in at six foot.
Casey Wilson: And I’ll tell you, these are the kind of pearls that I get showed with all day on set. And it’s really scintillating as everyone on the line can hear.
What stories from your real life relationships are making it on screen or what can we expect to see?
Casey Wilson: Well, I’ll tell one on you Ken.
Ken Marino: Go ahead.
Casey Wilson: Which is that I think it’s more of a runner right now but I’ve heard news that it might turn into more of a full fledged intervention between Annie and Jacob about Jake’s karaoke problem. And that is a problem Ken struggles with.
Ken Marino: It’s not a problem. I have a…
Casey Wilson: You can see that’s the thing. He’s in denial right now.
Ken Marino: There’s no problem whatsoever. I enjoy karaoke. I can do it when I want. And…
Casey Wilson: Who does it hurt? Who does it hurt?
Ken Marino: …it doesn’t (affect the rest of) my life.
Casey Wilson: That’s what he thinks. He thinks it doesn’t hurt anyone. But I know a lot of artists who have been hurt be hearing his renditions. See he can’t get up in the morning. He can barely talk the next day. He can’t go to work. It’s a problem.
Ken Marino: I’m not – look. I’m not going to deny I don’t enjoy a good karaoke like a good four or five hour karaoke session. But who doesn’t?
Casey Wilson: I’m trying to think. Well we did have a – so a few episodes ago where my character or actually Ken’s character tried to get me to do this thing called then open eye cuddle, which is an intimacy exercise that I learned in acting school that I tried to get my husband to do where you stare about two inches from each other’s face and just stare into each other’s eyes. And my husband thought I was insane and refused to do it…it went on about eight seconds. I don’t even think that much. And if anything, we are less close from that experience.
Ken, does your wife feel the need to remind you of things you’ve done that might work on the show?
Ken Marino: She hasn’t yet. I mean, you know, we – she hasn’t said anything that we should put on the show. But she’s constantly reminding me of all my flaws and things that I need to be better at in the house. Like putting my socks in the hamper as opposed to just kind of leaving them close to the hamper. She’s like, “You’d be right next to it. Just get them in there. Why just put them near it? Just get – just – go the extra distance.” Yes. And just like I go close to it and then I drop them there as if like I’ve done enough. The socks will make it the rest of the way. I’m trying to get the – in fact, encourage the socks to make it the rest of the way without me. It hasn’t helped. It hasn’t worked.
Given that both you guys are writers and both you guys are super funny, how much of this is actually scripted and how much is stuff that you come with?
Ken Marino: David and the room full of writers are amazing and they write great scripts. So, you know, we – David will encourage us to improvise off of that a little bit but I mean a lot of it – probably 95% of it is scripted I would say. Right Casey?
Casey Wilson: Yes. Yes. It’s definitely, you know, collaborative in a sense of if there’s something we want to do; we definitely do it and have fun with it. But the scripts are pretty tight, but we – Ken and I have initiated our own writer’s room with just the two of us that…
Ken Marino: We go off…
Casey Wilson: …I wouldn’t say it’s gone over well.
Ken Marino: No, no. They’re not – they’re not a – they’re not big fans of it. But we use – mostly use stuff from line Bazooka Joe bubblegum wrappers…
Casey Wilson: Yes.
Ken Marino: …and just kind of try to reinvent those jokes because those are classics and, you know, I think America wants to kind of enjoy the classics. You can’t get enough of it.
Why do you think she’s so relatable to women?
Casey Wilson: I don’t know if Annie feels exactly the same way. Annie’s a little more high strung and kind of self conscious about how her life should look. But I think that – and it obviously never works out the way she’s planned. But, the show – I’ve seen a little bit of criticism about, you know, especially our opening episode because Annie really wants to get married. But I actually think there’s something a little bit more like … about it in the sense that this couple’s been together for six years and this woman, for a woman who works and kind of does it all, sometimes getting engaged is the one thing you don’t have any control over, which can be kind of frustrating. It is actually relatable that, you kind of – and I know a lot of women like this. You want to be in control of the one thing you kind of can’t be in control of in a way. So I don’t know if that answers your question but I think Annie is a little bit less so in thinking that she – that everything needs to be perfect. She’s does think everything needs to be perfect.
Will you have as long of an engagement as you did a courtship?
Casey Wilson: Yes.
Ken Marino: The idea is that we’re going to – we’re going to marry, sooner than later. Right Casey? No?
Casey Wilson: Yes. I think we’re probably going to get married at the end of the season because I don’t think the show’s going to be about, will they, won’t they really. That’s kind of a spoiler alert. I think we will get married. The show’s more following this couple and their friendships and kind of – I think it’s more about what happens when you are committed to someone than when you are on the fence.
Have you guys ever received a script and there’s some humor in there that I wouldn’t say is inappropriate but maybe we haven’t seen on network TV before and you think how are we going to get away with this and maybe if you could talk about that.
Ken Marino: It’s always nice to read a script and see something that you haven’t seen before or something that’s pushing the envelope a little bit. That’s always exciting for me to kind of go in and do that. Whether or not it’s going to work on TV is kind of out of hands. I mean I – it’s just an exciting thing to, you know, approach and do and then, you know, you hope especially if it’s funny, you hope that it gets on the air. We’ve been kind of – I don’t know if we’ve been pushing the envelope or anything, but we’re doing what we want to do on the show and then that stuff is getting out there and I think that’s what makes the show special.
Casey Wilson: Yes. There’s obviously so much programming and so many great cable shows that people love and gravitate to, in some way we’re trying to do a show that exists on the line as much as we can just because I think there’s a reason people love something a little bit edgier. And I think in one episode – Ken, I’m thinking of the fertility episode. There was a scene that came – I think the network had the show was going to air like halfway through the season instead of earlier because it was a little too much. But I think ultimately it’s better to try that and see where we land.
There are lots of references to Skinny Girl and the Housewives. Do you guys watch the Housewives and if so, which one is you favorite? How do you like Skinny Girl?
Casey Wilson: I am an obsessive Housewives watcher and really love the show and was part of like a Housewives spoof show and just really – I’m both ashamed and unashamed of my love for them. I watch all the franchises. I love – I do love Orange County and New York the best, followed by Beverly Hills.
Ken Marino: Do you drink Skinny Girl?
Casey Wilson: Oh yes of course. Dan Bucatinsky plays my dad also on the Housewives so we did a little improv in a couple episodes ago. In terms of Skinny Girl Margarita, we’ve put it in a couple times because I love it. I finally did – I’ve never done this before but I did tweet Bethenny Frankel and say, “Not for nothing. We’ve mentioned you twice. Can we get some?” We did on Friday we got – it was so good. I’m horrified that I did that. I don’t know what happened to me that day. And we got a huge box…we got some for the office. This poor woman. I basically bullied her into like donating her product to us.
Ken Marino: I don’t watch the show but I did get very drunk on the Skinny Girl.
Now that you’ve heard so much about the Housewives Ken, will you start watching them?
Ken Marino: Actually the truth is I started watching Housewives and I just – it’s just a very hard show. When the fights break out, I get very uncomfortable and I can’t – I have to walk away. It’s just too much for me.
Casey Wilson: Well see Ken is a Bachelor fan and I can’t watch that show because I feel so uncomfortable. But it’s funny that we’ll both – we’ll not watch the other one.
Ken Marino: I just – I like the saccharin and the gooeyness of Bachelor and how just gross and like falsely romantic it is. Whereas like the Real Housewives is just like raw and like – it’s just – it’s the fights that get me. It’s just I can’t – very uncomfortable for me.
Casey Wilson: Whereas yes, I can’t watch people like stumble over matters of the heart. I can’t watch it.
There have been some recent comedy show cancellations. Do you feel like comedies have a harder road to success than dramas? And how have you felt about the reception that Marry Me has gotten so far?
Casey Marino: It’s very hard these days to make any television show. Anyone who’s trying to do anything should be applauded. It’s really hard. I don’t think shows are given enough of a chance. And it’s a bummer because whenever I see anything on TV, and not to be too dramatic, but those people worked really hard on that show no matter how you feel about it. So I was bummed.
Ken Marino: And I think it’s been nice the reception that Marry Me’s been getting. I feel like it’s – people have been responding mostly positive to it and both critically and they’re just, you know, fans and people I run up to on the street and certainly my mom.
Casey Wilson: Ken’s mom loves it.
Ken Marino: My mom really loves it. So that’s good. You know, so does my dad. It’s nice to see that people are enjoying the show as much as we are enjoying making it.
You guys have such great comedic timing. Is it something that’s always been natural to each of you?
Ken Marino: I don’t know. I mean I just – it’s always been fun to kind of joke around and I’ve always enjoyed comedy. So I don’t know if it’s natural. It just – I’ve kind of been around – I think we’ve both been running around in circles, you know, with friends who are comedians and actors who are, you know, comics and it just maybe kind of rubbed off on us. I don’t know. Casey.
Casey Wilson: Yes. I agree. I don’t know. I think that’s a hard question only just because – I don’t know. I think it’s just – I don’t know. Maybe just sort of habit from growing up. I’m not sure.
Ken Marino: Yes. I – we’re huge fans of comedy and have studied comedy growing up and throughout our lives. I think that we try to, you know, we want to – we want to do it because we enjoy it.
Casey Wilson: Yes. I always think like I wish growing up I’d been more into more subtle like actresses. I only watch like the broadest things and so my timing is so broad and it’s probably just, you know, mimicry.
Casey, what do you think it is about the show that’s made it such a quick fan favorite program?
Casey Wilson: Well, I’m happy to hear that. I mean I think – I don’t know. I think there is something nice. I like shows about a relationship because right away there’s some stakes to that and most people are in a relationship of some sort and especially a long-term one. There’s so much that goes on in it that’s funny. It’s kind of nice to see that. Obviously it’s a sitcom and it’s a comedy. But I don’t know. I think there’s something very relatable and kind of it gives you a bit of a warm feeling but also you’re getting jokes out of it. So I hope that’s why people like it.
Dan Marino: Yes. And I think that people – I know I do like when I watch TV. It’s nice to have a couple that you can root for, you know, as opposed to, you know, something where it’s like will they, won’t they; are they going to get together, are they not going to get together. I like shows where like there’s a team that are, you know, they’re against the world. I feel like with Jake and Annie are a team that you get to watch every week and enjoy kind of the situations that they get into. That’s the exciting thing.
In advance of tonight’s all new Grimm, OHSOGRAY took part in a call with Silas Weir Mitchell (Monroe) about his experience on the show, what we can expect in the future for Rosalee and Monroe, and how the cast keeps things interesting after four years.
Grimm airs Fridays at 9/8c on NBC.
At the end of the last episode, we saw a couple of troublemakers sitting outside of the spice shop. What can you tell us about those guys and what their intentions might be?
Silas Mitchell: It’s been pretty sweet for me and the lady. The only hiccup really was my parents being a little old school as far as the inter-Wesen relationship and we got over that hump pretty well. But I think what went down at the wedding has sent a kind of a bad signal is now, you know, out in the Wesen world. They know what’s going on and I think there’s a lot of people who have issues with it.I don’t think it’s going to be as easy as it was convincing (these) people that we’re okay as it was to convince my parents. So I think there’s a target on our backs, basically.
You are part of an ever growing ensemble cast. How do you tie all the characters together and make sure everybody gets their time?
Silas Mitchell: That’s a really good question. It’s interesting because at this point now we are in the middle of season four and I have more of a – I don’t take as macro a view of things because I’m really invested in my life as Monroe more than I am invested in the overarching narrative structure. So I can answer your question only from my point view and through my lens. But what I see in relation to that question is first of all the show runners David and Jim really have a very, very strong sense of what makes the show work. The mixture of dark story lines and comedic elements and marrying the real world that we live in with the world of Wesen’s who represent elements of our psyches. And they have a way of marrying these two things so that when more people are involved I think what happens is they are such good writers that they’re able to integrate these people into the world and the world is more important than anything else.
They’re invested in it in a way that they still – when new characters are introduced in fact they distill things further rather than dilute them. I know that’s some kind of magic trick of writing because I know what you mean. It’s just – they don’t dilute it, they don’t diffuse it – somehow they use the new characters really well in order to clarify story lines rather confiscate them.
I don’t know how they do it except that they have a very strong grasp of what makes the show work. And right now it feels as though we have about six story lines chugging along. And each story line is very, very tightly wound. And they choose when to integrate those story lines with each other or when to keep them separate.
Like Adalind, I don’t really know what’s going on with Adalind. But she kind of – she goes away and then she reintegrates into the other story lines and they’re just very good at doing this dance. I don’t know how they do it but they do it.
How does the judgment of the Wesen community on Rosalee and Monroe’s marriage impact the couple?
Silas Mitchell: One of the things that these writers are able to do is marry the world that we live in, you and I, with the world of Grimm where you can paint these psychological social issues with a kind of richer brush than you can if you’re completely bound to reality or our reality.
This mixture that they’ve come up with allows for this type of storytelling and I think that it will be complicated for us as characters. Because that’s true to life.
Since there is no “will they or won’t they” in the Rosalee and Monroe, what’s the plan for keeping their relationship interesting?
Silas Mitchell:Well I think that again it was the will they or won’t they for me and her was pretty much not even will they or won’t they. It was kind of like when are they. People still seemed interested because – so that’s a good sign right there. Because I think the will they or won’t they is something that sustains shows to a fault sometimes, you know?
Where it becomes just a big tease. I don’t think we did that really. We didn’t do the big tease thing. We sort of did these people falling in love thing. And that’s a different story. It may not have the cutesy will they or won’t they but it has a different kind of – it holds a different kind of interest for people. I think that if people are interested even though they know what’s going to happen which is that we’re going to be together. I think people pretty much knew we were going to be together. Then I don’t think they’re going to have a hard time being interested in the complications that follow.
There will be complications and they’re not going to, I don’t think, soft-peddle them. These writers are interested in real stuff. Even though the show is “a fairy tale” show, our writers are very interested in real human stuff. And that’s what makes the show interesting.
Any word on a Monroe/Rosalee baby?
Silas Mitchell:No. But whenever I’m asked that question, I just say “Vorherrsch” and you can figure that out. There was an episode when we were asked by other people – in fact we had to explain to Nick and Hank, you know, what would happen if we had a kid. And the upshot is a thing called a Vorherrsch which is a mixture of two Wesen having a baby. I don’t know what it means, but that’s the word.
Do you think Wu should be let in on the Wesen secret?
Silas Mitchell: Well that’s a good question. I mean I think in a lot of ways Wu – he’s already been through the wringer, you know, pretty big time as far as having his mind really messed with when the Aswang was the – when they were dealing with that because, you know, of the Filipino nature of that myth, you know, that he always thought it was a fairy tale and then he starts to see that maybe it’s actually true. So in some ways the soil has been, you know, there’s a fertile ground there for him maybe being able to deal with these things in a way.
But on the other hand it could send him over the edge. So I just think that whatever happens Nick and Hank will have to be very deliberate as far as how they handle it with Wu. And he obviously keeps pushing, then they’re going to have to make a decision. And the decision’s going to be based on what’s going to be best for Wu. Because he’s going – will he lose his mind completely or will he be able to handle it. Because he’s already sort of been down that road and, you know what I mean?
The show is in its fourth season. What are some of the challenges for a show that’s so established?
Silas Mitchell: What’s great about it is, [there are] manifold reasons why it’s great. Primarily it’s that we’re a pretty well-oiled machine now so there’s not a lot of distractions. You can economize your – the way you work in the sense that you know where all the locations are. You know the city, to get around the city. The crew is really at the top of their game. When the machine is humming along it makes it easier to do better work. So that’s one of the great things about it. The only real challenge about it and this isn’t a challenge that I face – it’s for the writers to keep the thing fresh. I think they’re doing a bang-up job of that. But that’s not my problem so to speak. I take what they give me and I do my best to make it real and have fun with it. But I don’t have to worry about story lines. I just live the life they give me to live. So for me it’s really all upside.
The writers teased for a long time with Wu’s name. So are we ever going to find out if Monroe is the first or last name and is that coming and do you know?
Silas Mitchell: If I knew I wouldn’t tell you. How’s that for a riddle?
What it like to portray a Wesen persecuted for his marriage choice?
Silas Mitchell: It’s exciting. Because it’s a different life experience that I’m getting to live and that’s the fun of the whole game. It’s just living different life experiences and I mean that’s the fun of being an actor. So to me was looking forward to things getting sticky and difficult because like I said earlier I think the only, you know, the only real hiccup last year on the way to the altar was, you know, my dad being a jerk. And that’s not that big of a deal.
This is a much bigger deal. I tell you, a lot of things that are smaller in magnitude than having a Grimm be on the altar with you at the wedding have happened that have led to terrible things. So I think, you know, that’s a big deal. When that gets out in the world not only the inter-Wesen thing but the fact that we’re friends with a Grimm and if that gets known it’s trouble. So I think it’s just going to be ugly. And I’m excited about it because – that’s fun to play, you know.
Through the years you have played several mentally unstable actors. Is that a coincidence or do you pursue these types of roles?
Silas Mitchell: It’s more of a coincidence than anything but I have to admit that I find – I find it very interesting to live a life that is very, very other than the life I live as a man when I’m in stories. And I think that one of the things that makes a person’s life very, very different is what goes on inside their psyche. It may be partly coincidental, maybe partly just because of the way I look. But I don’t seek it out per se, you know. I don’t seek it out but I find it fascinating and I do enjoy it. I don’t know if you’ve seen the film Birdman yet but, you know too, but that is also investigating, you know, the inner life of a person who is seeing the world in a very, very unique way. I just find that very exciting as an actor.
We’ve gotten some pretty gnarly holiday episodes in the past on Grimm. What is coming up for us with the Thanksgiving and the Christmas holidays?
Silas Mitchell: Pretty gnarly episodes.
Any sense of what kind of mess that we can expect?
Silas Mitchell: You know, I still miss Krampus. I think he was just one of the best. One of the just – I loved that guy. I thought he was awesome. I think it’s – I don’t think there’s a – I’m just trying to remember here. I think that Christmas is interrupted by other events than a Christmas oriented Wesen this year. I mean there’s still Christmas and it’s big. God knows. Can’t be otherwise. But the complications involved aren’t specifically Christmas related.
Is there somebody in particular that maybe you haven’t had a lot of scenes with that you’d like to get to work more with?
Silas Mitchell: Yes definitely. And the two would be Sasha and Reggie, you know. I’ve worked even more with the Captain than I have with Sergeant Wu. I remember the first scene that the Captain and I had together and it was so much fun to get these two people with completely different energies who’ve never been in the same room together practically – when he came to the spice shop I think it was year – I don’t know if it was year two or three. It’s all sort of blurred together. But he came to the spice shop and to get some stuff to keep him from being in love with Bitsie’s character – with Juliette. It was a delight to get to have Monroe and the cast in the room dealing with – it was really fun. I think that it would be fun to get more with Wu and Monroe just because; A: Reggie’s fantastic and we work in similar ways and we haven’t had a lot of stuff to do together. We were actually in the same class in Los Angeles when we both got this job. We were working together on a scene from a play. So we know each other pretty well and it would be fun to actually get to work with him more.
Will the gang have any luck restoring Nick’s Grimm power? It looks like Renard’s Mom’s getting pretty close to having a break-through.
Silas Mitchell: Yes. That’s going to be a challenge, you know. I mean he’s been Hexenbiested so that’s a brutal – that’s a brutal, you know, they’re powerful creatures. They’re powerful women. I think it’s going to be fun to watch him struggle for a little while. Just got to watch him squirm a little bit.
What’s it been like to play the dynamics between Monroe and Nick with him not being a Grimm? Has that been fun to play as well?
Silas Mitchell: Oh it’s, yes, no it’s been totally great because there are so many issues arise in the absence of his powers for me and Rosalee. I mean he got me into all this crap and now he can’t protect me. I love the guy but now I’m kind of out on a limb, you know. He feels bad and I feel bad for feeling angry. And I feel bad for him. But I’m also scared and angry and it’s great. There’s a lot of stuff swirling around in the soup.
Again it’s just the writers are finding ways of re-imagining things that aren’t – they’re still fresh, you know. They’re still fresh and they’re still interesting for us and hopefully for you guys too. And definitely I enjoy playing the dynamic of, you know, Nick is a broken man at this point. And it’s fun…
Can you talk about working with Bree and how that’s actually developed over these four seasons?
Silas Mitchell: Well it’s just one of those things where you’re lucky to get to work with someone who you work similarly. We’re both invested in having a real experience. The story is the most important thing. It’s fun to play pretend at a high level. We play pretend until it becomes real on a certain level and it’s just nice to have a partner who shares that ethic. That’s just the luck of the draw really. But it’s been delightful. I mean it’s very – it’s one of those things where it could have gone either way. Luckily, it went the way of two people who work well together. That’s just luck really. You’ve got to credit casting. They put a group of people together that do well together. I mean all of us do well together. You know what I mean? There’s no strife. There’s no – people show up to work and have fun doing it and we respect each other. And we – it’s a good – it’s a nice brew of psyches in there. We’re there to, you know, and she’s just one element of it.
In last week’s episode Juliette came to Monroe and Rosalie and sort of asked them to let Nick take his time about deciding about his future as far as wanting to go back to being a Grimm. How does that effect Monroe’s and Rosalee’s relationship with Juliette? How have you seen that sort of develop in the episodes you guys have shot this year?
Silas Mitchell: Well it’s one of those things where you understand where she’s coming from because God knows I’m sure it ain’t easy being married to – well not married, but being – living with a guy who’s dealing with what Nick is dealing with when he has his powers. But there’s a conflict. So – because him being (de-Grimmed) is not good for us. Because he’s our eyes and ears in a lot of ways and he can help us with the people who think that what’s going on between us and him is not right.So it’s just one of those things where it’s complicated because you’re conflicted and you’re conflicted because you want one thing and, you know, your friend’s girlfriend wants another thing. And you have to – that’s life. You have to kind of find a way to navigate that. So it does complicate the relationship with Juliette.
I mean it’s not something that’s like she’s – it’s not – it doesn’t destroy it. It’s not a tragic thing but it’s complicated and again this is credit to the writers for writing, you know, subtle stuff in a, you know, they write subtle stuff in a show that I think a lot of people – but those that don’t watch the show don’t understand that it’s actually got this kind of subtle human sub-text to it. But thankfully the people who do watch it get it and that’s why we’re still making it.
If you weren’t an actor, what other profession would you want to have?
Silas Mitchell:You know it was one of those things where it just kind of – I took to it, you know? I didn’t really think about it as a profession per se probably until I was in college. But it was always something that I enjoyed a lot and I was good at. When people tell you you’re good at something when you’re a kid you tend to keep doing it. I was interested in other things – teaching I was interested in, psychology I was interested in. But I never pursued any other career because this continued and continues to interest me. Because it’s always just out of your reach. That’s what’s delightful about it. Because it’s always – you can always do more. You can always be better. You can always have a deeper, richer, more textured experience. As an actor you’re never finished.
As long as something continues to interest you and to feed you then why would you stop. That’s just my experience and in no way am I suggesting that people don’t say like okay I got it, I’m done, I’m doing something else. Maybe that will happen to me some day. But at this point I still find it sort of magical and complicated and intangible. I enjoy that about it.
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