By BILL HARRIS
Special to The Lede
As keyed up as Jerry O’Connell is about CARTER, there are some things he probably shouldn’t say during an interview.
“Don't tell the higher-ups at CTV Drama, but I would do it for free,” O’Connell says.
Hmmm, that may not be the best negotiating tactic, but O’Connell can’t hide his excitement about Season 2 of CARTER, which debuts Friday, Oct. 25 with back-to-back new episodes starting at 9 p.m. ET on CTV Drama Channel. O’Connell - who plays lead character Harley Carter - is keen to set up the new campaign in his own inimitable style:
Q: For fans of Season 1, what is going to be the same, and what is going to be different, about Season 2 of CARTER?
Jerry O’Connell: “As far as what's the same, we're going to continue to make fun of every procedural television show you've ever watched. I think people are going to dig it, and that includes people who love procedural television. Why I like CARTER so much is, when you work in TV, there are rules, you know? There's usually a body at the beginning of the episode, you meet a bunch of suspects, and after five acts you sort of figure it out. Yes, we do that on CARTER, but we make fun of every decision we make along the way. And what's going to be different is, we're going to have a little bit of a love triangle with the characters played by myself, Lyriq Bent, and Sydney Poitier Heartsong. So it's going to get a little uncomfortable.”
Q: Lyriq Bent has joined the cast as the new interim police chief, and early in the season your character says, “He feels like a threat to our way of life … and he’s SO handsome.” Just how distracting was Lyriq Bent’s handsomeness?
Jerry O’Connell: “Let me put it this way. Kristian Bruun, who's our co-star, is going to get mad at me for saying this, but I don't care. We had a 40th birthday party for him in the United States - the first surprise party I've ever organized. Lyriq came to it. My wife (actress and legendary supermodel Rebecca Romijn) was at that party. She had never met Lyriq, but she had seen him in some episodes of CARTER that have yet to air. She’s also a big fan of THE AFFAIR, and Lyriq just had a storyline going with Anna Paquin's character on that show. So it was a big day, Kristian turning 40, we all had a lot of fun, there were a lot of drinks, there was a lot of laughing. But ALL my wife could talk about - and STILL talks about - is Lyriq Bent.”
Q: So he left quite an impression.
Jerry O’Connell: “I don't judge people physically, so I don't even see this, but Lyriq is a striking individual. We shoot this show in North Bay, and I did work out with Lyriq when I was up there, and I could not move my arms properly for two weeks. He's in great shape. He's a great actor, too. Great addition. Really thankful for him. And I'm really proud to say that he's a good friend.”
Q: All things considered, it sounds as if you really enjoy making CARTER.
Jerry O’Connell: “It’s a fun show to work on. I have a super hip car this season, and I have that really funny line in the first episode where I say, 'Listen, every TV detective needs a signature ride.' It felt like I was living in an episode of MAGNUM P.I., and you know what? I was really into it. I mean, this really is some childhood fantasy stuff.”