16th Sep2013

Interview: Haven’s Lucas Bryant talks season 4

by Phil Wheat

With season four of Haven premiering in the US this past weekend we got a chance to sit down with star Lucas Bryant, who plays Nathan on the Syfy original series.

lucas-haven

This season starts off a bit bleak and Nathan seems to be this dejected version of himself, not the confident guy he used to be. So can you talk a little bit about what it has been like playing that version of the character?

Lucas Bryant: Yeah, that was a really cool turn for me. I mean you know as you said, Nathan has always been maybe a little bit too sure of himself. I mean sure, he’s always got doubts, but he had this kind of blind trust in himself, and Audrey, and that as you saw at the end of Season 3 led to a disastrous outcome. So now, yeah, getting to explore that you know ruin side of him was a lot of fun, and you know, continuing out through Season 4, he has a new mission, but it is as you say, a lot darker, and that was a lot of fun.

And can you talk a little bit about now Dwight has this new role. Can you talk about how that changes up the dynamic between Nathan and Dwight?

Yeah, Dwight is in a bunch of this season, which is a blast. So yes, Dwight sort of gave Nathan some new leeway to not have to always follow the rules, not having to act the role of Chief and I’m able to get a little bit more dirty. And the relationship with Dwight is fun. I mean he is a real jerk to work with, but I’ve sort of tamed the beast. And so, we got to play a lot around with him. I always sort of felt that he was kind of like an older brother, although I am actually ten years older than the actual actor. He felt like an older brother whom Nathan – someone who knew a lot more about what was going on here. But he was someone that I kind of needed to corral I suppose, and now, the tables have been turned.

I’m just such a huge of Haven and the season premiere really knocked my socks off. You were amazing. Wow, watching you be heartbroken is just – you are really, really good at it, and it was wonderful to see.

Thank you. Thank you. I’m really just a bleeding heart in my real life, so it was a pleasure to bring that.

Are you going to have some happier moments this season hopefully?

No.

I’m sorry to hear that.

No, they are all together. There are some happy moments definitely for Nathan, but sadly, they seem to be fleeting. Yeah, well you know that’s just the way it has got to go. When things start looking too good, you have to just smash it all to pieces, right. So you know, hopefully, there is – well especially in the first half of the season. Nathan’s outlook is pretty bleak, pretty dark. You know you learn in that opening episode what he has decided he needs to do and the deal that’s made about his short future.

Right.

So, no, things aren’t looking too good there, but I will tell you that there may be very exciting lights at the end of that dark tunnel.

You haven’t finished shooting yet have you?

No, we are shooting Episode 11 right now, so we’ve got two more to go.

Do you have a favorite moment so far from this season?

Good question. Well there are a bunch of great bits coming up that I can’t tell you anything about, but I’m sure fans will probably be pretty into what develops midway through the season. Specifically for me I guess, a couple of episodes ago I got to play a wildly different version of Nathan. Something happens in town that’s – how do I put this? – that shakes up everyone’s reality, so yes; I got to explore a very different side of him, which was a blast. A much less reserved and much more effusive side of Nathan that I certainly didn’t see coming.

I don’t know if you can tell us this, but is Audrey going to remember at some point soon or is kind of this disconnect going to be going on for a long time throughout the season?

My answer is nothing.

Okay.

How am I going to answer that? That was my question at the beginning of the season too, but like I’ve said before, the writers don’t tell us very much of anything. I’m lucky if I even know if I have to work tomorrow or not.Part of the Audrey we knew does make an appearance this season, yes. How, or why, or when, I guess, I can’t really tell you that, but she is not altogether lost.

Can you talk at all about Nathan’s interactions with her and how your dynamic is going to be different if she is not remember?

Yeah, well that’s the tricky thing. Let’s just say she does make it back to Haven and let’s just say hypothetically that there is a reunion of sorts, you know she has changed. So as far as Nathan is concerned, she looks like this person she was and seems like the person she was, but it’s pretty quickly clear that she is not, so that’s troubling for him and difficult. And this new side of her character is wildly different from Audrey Parker, so that is a challenge. She is much more sassy and outspoken and tough and Nathan has I hope kind of a humorous and also you know challenging relationship with her.

What is Nathan’s mindset as he looks for Audrey? Does he truly think he can find her?

Yeah, I think that he with the little glimmer of hope that’s given to him initially in the first episode, he holds onto that as tightly as possible. So I think he believes in that 100,000%, because there is nothing else. He doesn’t have any other hope. So that’s not to say I guess he is not without his doubts, but yes, I think he has to believe that there is a way to get her back.

This season, are we going to find out anything more about Nathan, and Duke, and what happened between them when they were younger, or maybe why he doesn’t remember being adopted?

I would like to – some of that is touched on a little bit. There is a bit of – yeah, I guess there is a bit of that backstory. I would love to see that explored more, because no, we are not really going to get – as far as I am concerned, we are not really getting terribly satisfying answers. There is a little bit there.

The first season kind of mixed it up a bit because there was a through thread the entire season. Will the fourth season be similar to that where there is say a single thread that kind of goes throughout the entire season or will it get back more to more self-contained episodes?

Yeah, there are both. I guess it’s similar to the third season in that there is an ongoing storyline throughout this whole season. With that being said, I think that the episodes – in many ways, they do – you know there is a case tweak that we need to deal with, but some of them are tied in over multiple episodes.

This season it seems like our finale – I don’t know the finale yet, but the second to the last episode, which I just read for the first time, is sort of a continuous thing, so that looks like it will be sort of a two-part story. But yes, there are a couple of big themes running through this whole season that I think will reward viewers that are tuning into each episode and waiting for the next one, you know, and there is…

Can you talk about what those are or are you sworn to secrecy on those themes?

Lucas Bryant: Well, I’m sworn to secrecy about most things, but I can tell you a little. The character of William in Episode 401 is very important in Season 4 and just exactly who is and what he knows becomes a large part of this season’s story, and also, obviously you know initially my attempts to locate Audrey and get her back. That’s – you know and get the “Audrey” Audrey back is a large part of this season.

And what else is running through this season. I guess – yeah and then we have new – well you met in 401 this new character, Jennifer, and her relationship to the barn and just what she is capable of I think is a story that’s woven in throughout this whole season too and becomes very important, especially as we get into the end of it.

I just recently saw your episode of Correct and you did such nice work there. Does it sort of change how you play Nathan when you go off and get to play other characters during the hiatus and get to come back to Nathan? Do you see him through a different lens?

Well first of all, thanks very much for saying that. It doesn’t – no, I wouldn’t say that it necessarily colors how I play Nathan. Nathan is what he is and the story is what it is, but the experience of doing other shows in the offseason definitely colors my relationship to this show. You know not necessarily about how I approach the character, but this year especially it really reminded me or showed me how lucky we are to be where we are and shoot the way we do you know. The other shows that I did in this off season were great experiences and they were all cool people and it was lovely.

But here, we are in Nova Scotia and it’s a beautiful day. And we have boats, and docks, and people camped out here like a real little family. It’s fantastic and so that whole experience surrounding the shooting of the show I think is something really special and by doing others, I was reminded just how special, you know?

This question is about your costars, Kate Kelton and Colin Ferguson. First, I was wondering if you had the opportunity to be in many scenes or any scenes with Colin so far this season, and if so, what it has been like to work with him. And regarding Kate, I was really glad to see she got to come back for another season, and again, I just wonder what you think of her as a scene partner and if you could comment on what her character’s intensity brings to the mix of the show.

Sure. yeah, Kate is great and she – you know her – well you’ve seen that one already, so you know her role in the story is something quite different this season and my relationship – Nathan’s relationship with Jordan is – yes, it is a an about-face from last season, so that was fun to play. To have that you know animosity I guess this season and having had the history that we have from Season 3.

And Colin is fantastic. I have worked with him this year and not as – well I guess, what can I say. I guess more so in the second half of the season and his character is – of course I can’t – once again, I have given you this vague answer. I can’t really tell you anything, but his character is very – well he brings out a lot of emotions in Nathan. Let’s just say that. And Colin is such a – you know he is a charming guy and the character that he plays is such a – has real – well I can’t really say that either can I. Man, how do you even answer any of these questions? He is a whole dynamic I guess that he brought to the show and you know he’s a blast to work with because he’s got a real great sense of humor and he is a total pro.

Okay as a follow up quickly, can you give any hints as to how long into the season – you sort of mentioned the second half of the season is when you deal with him. Can you tell us a bit of maybe how long it takes for Nathan to find Audrey?

It’s…

Does it happen in the first few episodes or almost all the way to the end, in the middle, just vague like that.

There is a sort of reunion in the first half of the season. How is that?

Can you go into a little more detail on what the primary theme of this season is and how it has changed from last season.

Good question. The primary theme of this season. Well I guess in many ways this season the danger has been raised again and I think our heroes of the show for lack of a better word are wrestling with – each of us are wrestling with how little we understand and how maybe ill-equipped we are to deal with them. I think in the past we had some – things have all been going badly, but there was maybe some faith that we would somehow we would be able to deal with it. Not that we’ve lost all faith now, but I think this season all of us have been shown that this thing is maybe so much huger than anyone could have guessed. And so, I think we are sort of adrift in a lot of dangerous possibilities this season.

So maybe the theme is you know about questioning ourselves, but it doesn’t really sound like that’s a departure from the show does it, because I guess questions have been the central theme since the beginning. But it’s just like a whole new rug has been pulled out from under everyone’s feet.

So Nathan and Duke have had a pretty tumultuous bromance throughout the series, but he did trust Duke enough it seems like to send him in after Audrey in the barn, so what can we expect from their reunion and their relationship this season?

Yeah, in Season 4, Nathan and Duke have a lot more trust of each and faith in each other, so we see more of their friendship I guess. I mean you know the relationship is always the same, but I think some of that animosity has been left behind in their you know shared goals this season initially of finding Audrey and we did get to work together a lot more this season, so that was a lot of fun. So anytime that those characters are put together and try and achieve something together, I think it’s a great matchup.

I have a lot of fun with that jerk.

The show has gotten really dark over the last three seasons, and also, it little scarier. As far as the horror elements of this series goes, what can we expect in the new season?

Yeah, that’s true isn’t it? There is some pretty gruesome stuff this season. Maybe we should raise the recommended viewing age from like 6 to like 7 or 8 this season maybe – 8-year-olds and up. Yeah, there is some gruesome stuff definitely.

Let me think what’s – well this next one that I – there is an episode that is coming up that has babies in it – babies are horrifying. And also, kids. In an earlier episode, there are kids. Kids are terrifying too. no but seriously, I guess when that does – the kids themselves may not be terrifying and the babies themselves may not be terrifying, but when you put kids and babies in these terrible situations, that seems to raise the horror element for me anyway. That gets me every time.

I don’t – I think Episode 3 last year, “The Farmer,” was the one where the guy had the like organ-sucking snake that came out of his throat. I don’t know that anything has topped that one for just total weirdness yet, but there is a bit of – there is definitely a lot of creep factor this season.

And what kinds of troubles can we expect?

Let’s see, like I said, we have some children coming up and that is pretty yucky and some neat and weird clawed forest creatures. There are more claws, definitely a lot more claws. There are more claws coming in later too, and big teeth. Well that happened recently. Let me think. One of them that was not a terrifying trouble, but was a lot of fun for me and one I mentioned before, was there is something that effects everyone’s reality, so each of our characters were altered considerably and we got to play really wild versions of ourselves. That was a lot of fun for me and for Duke especially.

Well we all know [about] your character’s relationship with Duke Crocker, but we have a new Crocker coming on the show in Christian Camargo’s Wade Crocker. And can you kind of hint a little bit as to how he is going to see this other Crocker come into their lives?

Yeah, that was so cool to have Christian this year. He is a great actor and a really lovely guy. Unfortunately, I – Nathan didn’t get to – I didn’t get to interact that – as much with the character of Wade as I would have liked to. He was tied in more to Duke’s storyline, but he is – well you know the possibilities of the Crocker Family.

Let me just say that he provides a whole other set of concerns for our characters when this other Crocker shows up.

And as far as this season, how does it feel to you compared to last season? Is the work – it sounds like it’s more challenging for you so far.

I think so, yes. First of all, it feels fast. This season has flown and I feel like I’ve been up here – you know I can’t believe that we are almost done. So that’s an indication I think of some good momentum. You know things really gained – well last year, they had that – you know we had the ticking clock with Audrey’s inevitable departure apparently and so this year as well we sort of continue that momentum.

You know Nathan is as you saw initially saw as sort of a wild man with a onetrack mind, and yes, it has felt like – you know like I said before, we are all you know dealing with a new level of self-doubt and desperation. And so, I think those factors can lead to more – sometimes irrational behavior that only furthers – you know speeds up this inevitable whirlwind of madness that is Havne Season 4.

I don’t – you know, it has been very cool to have these new characters – Emma Lahana who plays Jennifer and Christian and Colin. You know each of them represents something, either a huge new hope or a huge new danger, yeah and all of those elements this season feel like they’ve been woven very nicely together for like a quick, fast moving season.

I don’t know exactly the dates, but it feels like every now and then we stop and we are like hang on. This last episode that we just did, that was yesterday, right, and the one that happened – and that was the day before. So this season happens in a really short time timespan once we do the time jump in between seasons. All of this takes place in a very short period of time, so it’s moving really quick.

In the first episode we find Nathan obviously in a very dark place; it has been six months since he feels everyone has been gone. And when Duke finds him, despite their animosity, Nathan just seems so overwhelmed and so excited to see him. Like the hug you give him is incredible, but he later questions you when you say that you are Audrey’s you know true love. You are the one that she loves the most and he questions that. How do you think Nathan will feel if he learns that Duke is right and that he is not the one that Audrey loves the most, especially since Audrey isn’t really Audrey this year?

How could you even suggest that I couldn’t possibly be the one?

Duke suggested it. I’m just following up.

Well he is wrong. Yeah, well hypothetically, if that were to happen, then we would hypothetically get to see exactly how Nathan feels with that in a hypothetical world.

In a hypothetical world.

Yeah, well first of all I want to say about the hug. It’s mostly Balfour. He’s just got great strong arms and when he holds you, you feel safe, so that was all real what you saw there in that episode. All I was doing was just feeling the effects of his embrace even though I may have started it, okay.

Yeah, but yeah, that is a good question. If the writers were going to explore that possibility, that would be very interesting. I hope they do and they hypothetically might in some episode hypothetically around 4, 5, or 6.

That’s such a great big number – 4, 5, or 6, got it.

4 or 5 or 6…

Got you. And so, like the troubles have seemed to have gotten a lot worse and happening with more frequency.

Yes.

And in the first episode, we go back to a case that happened in Season 1. Will we be seeing more of that happen this season as a lot of Haven people still live there and they still have those same troubles. So will we see some (of those) manifest again?

Right, do we see more? Let me see, I guess we don’t revisit too many. I mean there are a couple of callbacks to things that have happened before, but yes, you are absolutely right. The rules that we thought we understood have now |changed for some reason and we are trying to figure out why, and so yes, these things are happening. The troubles are happening with much more ferociousness and the death toll is rising pretty fast. And that was something that – you know people have died in the past, people have died on this show, but there was – in some ways, we were able to kind of have somewhat happy endings. Now, those happy endings seem all the more elusive.

And for everything that happens in Haven, why is everything a gas leak or a gas explosion? Hasn’t anyone figured out another reason for this unexplainable madness instead of a gas leak?

I know, we will just go back to the old standby. Well it worked last time. I told them it’s a gas leak. Good thinking. We actually addressed that very question this season. Thankfully, someone who is like in the show is like what is up with the perpetual gas leaks? You would think they would have fixed the pipes already. I mean…

After three seasons already.

After three seasons, yes. Yes, it’s becoming much harder to keep a lid on and to explain away you know. The troubles in Season 4 are in full swing and it’s not that easy to keep them under wraps.

With a show like this, does each season unfold with some sort of endgame in mind, or does each season just kind of happen as it happens?

Yeah, I wish I knew. No, I think that there is definitely you know a long-term plan and each season is sort of mapped out in bullet points. Each season is sort of like a layer of an onion you know. And so it was just a little taste we started with in the first season that hinted at you know something much bigger going on, and as it has been unpeeled, this role sort of unraveled. And I think that that’s – you know I don’t know that there is anything at the center of that onion, it just keeps going and going until you get that little weird onion piece in the middle. That will be Season 12.

I was just wondering with the new season starting and how you always seem to take it and hook people in with every episode that you do yourself as well as the other ensemble, what pulls you into the character of Nathan?

What pulled me into the character of Nathan initially?

No, I mean now as it is progressing further. I mean because there is always a different layer and it just seems like when you get to one part, you think that you’ve reached that center, and you haven’t. So I’m just wondering what pulls you in to make him different every time. Because it’s like a different show, a different production, you are never just one (set thing).

Well thanks for saying that. I guess – well initially it was – you know you’ve seen the first episode. So for me, that was exciting to get to explore a side of Nathan that was completely lost you know and a darker side of him, especially like I said in the first half of this season. And because he feels responsible for what happened at the end of the third season, then every new death and problem in Haven is sort of on his head or he feels it’s on his head.

So you know to get to play that side of him where everything he is dealing with is just getting – or every death he had to deal with just made it worse and worse. That got to bring a real desperation and that was really fun for me this year. And then, midway through the season, there are big changes for him. I won’t tell you why or what, but there – it’s just you know these guys. These writers are you know perpetually putting us in pretty crazy situations, so every shot that we get to show a new side of this character has been a blast and Nathan has been someone who has gotten to you know really grow up in this show, so yeah, that’s what inspires me is getting to go on this journey with him.

If you could pick one way for the series to end, what to you would be the ideal way to end this series? Hopefully it won’t happen for many, many seasons, but what would you like to see happen to the characters at the end of the series?

Right. Nathan will be a very old man and he will just finally die when his rocking chair breaks on his porch. Either that or Nathan, Duke, and Audrey start a band on the road or yeah, how would I like to see it end?

Well I would like a happy ending. You know is that too much to ask? I would like them – yeah, I would like them to figure out what in God’s name is going on here and how to you know stop it in a way that they could do with – that included everyone surviving you know. That would be nice. I think that there is – you know with the onion layers, I think that there are in this season – we are learning that you know the forces behind this phenomenon are huge and powerful. And so yes, to be able to get into all of that, explain them, explore them, and then somehow fix it, That would be wild. But first of all, I would just be curious to see what they are you know because I feel like we do have a good you know four more seasons in it.

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