Vic­to­ria bit­ter

Madeleine Stowe’s evil queen bee is back in town, writes Deb­bie Schipp

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Gaming -

My­favourite line . . . was when he called Vic­to­ria the ‘de­monic suc­cubus’


is switch­ing fo­cus back to the war be­tween Emily and the Graysons. which was the idea of a shad­owy as­so­ci­a­tion that was out there cre­at­ing this death and de­struc­tion.

‘‘ And that wasn’t really work­ing for au­di­ences. They really en­gaged with the core group of characters that are here and their dilem­mas, and watch­ing them go at each other in a per­sonal way.

‘‘ So we’re go­ing back to kind of what the show orig­i­nated to be, and that is per­sonal vendet­tas.’’

While Vic­to­ria may seem quiet by her stan­dards at least early in the sea­son, it’s a mat­ter of her as­sem­bling her forces. ‘‘ Vic­to­ria has kind of had her hands tied this sea­son STOP, SPOCK! : How much do peo­ple care about Star Trek in the mod­ern era? This New York on-the-ground video seeks to dis­cover it, ask­ing Spock ac­tor Zachary Quinto to race around a build­ing while an en­thu­si­as­tic in­ter­viewer gauges re­ac­tions. Watch: so far, and that’s all about to change. And so that’s been a lit­tle hard for me,’’ says Stowe.

‘‘ But the plea­sure is great, and the pain is hor­ri­ble.’’

Stowe gives the im­pres­sion she thinks her char­ac­ter, while bor­der­line, is also mis­un­der­stood. ‘‘ I think be­cause so many hor­ri­ble things hap­pened to Vic­to­ria when she was young, she had a really dam­ag­ing back­ground she wants to ra­di­ate. That’s the

THE smile is wider and warmer than that of her al­ter-ego, evil queen bee Vic­to­ria Grayson, but in her dress­ing room on the set of hit se­ries Re­venge, Madeleine Stowe is just as re­gal.

This, de­spite the fact she’s wear­ing an in­con­gru­ous floor­length Puffa jacket be­tween shoot­ing scenes, thanks to an icy spell in Los An­ge­les where tem­per­a­tures have plum­meted. Some­how, she’s own­ing it like a de­signer fur.

Stowe is far less icy than her char­ac­ter, though equally blunt and dis­arm­ing.

Her an­swers can be just as dou­ble-edged as Vic­to­ria’s, but it’s more out of mis­chief and a de­ter­mi­na­tion not to give too much of the up­com­ing sea­son away rather than Vic­to­ria’s modus operandi of ma­nip­u­la­tive spite and con­sid­ered ac­tion.

Laugh­ing that in the show’s first sea­son last year, fans seemed ‘‘ a lit­tle fright­ened of me’’ and were wary about stop­ping her in the street, Stowe warns that while Grayson is in sur­vival mode at the moment, she’s only re­gath­er­ing her forces.

Suf­fice to say, her de­ter­mi­na­tion to pro­tect her­self, her fam­ily, and not let in­ter­loper Emily Thorne (Emily Van Camp) un­ravel her life­time of dou­ble-deal­ing will be undimmed. ‘‘ Prob­a­bly worse,’’ Stowe says with a grin.

‘‘ I ac­tu­ally per­son­ally think my char­ac­ter is men­tally ill. I think that Emily is a so­ciopath, and I think that — I’m ac­tu­ally talk­ing to Mike ( Re­venge cre­ator Mike Kel­ley) about this — that Vic­to­ria has a bor­der­line per­son­al­ity dis­or­der. We’ve got it all fig­ured out. And both are im­pos­si­ble to treat, by the way.’’

About half of sea­son two of Re­venge has al­ready aired in the US, and has been crit­i­cised by some fans for in­tro­duc­ing too many ex­ter­nal sto­ry­lines and tak­ing the ac­tion away from the Hamp­tons.

But Stowe says a mid­sea­son ‘‘ re­set’’ so­lid­i­fies those sto­ry­lines and out­side in­flu­ences, and switches the fo­cus firmly back to The Hamp­tons and the war be­tween Emily and the Graysons.

‘‘ Vic­to­ria’s go­ing to be the vil­lain once again,’’ she says. ‘‘ So with that there will be all kinds of grabs for power. There was an ex­per­i­ment Mike was try­ing with re­spect to the show, only way she can really feel good about her­self. And so she wants to put her­self at this cen­tre of at­ten­tion.

‘‘ That act of go­ing on the plane to tes­tify was about try­ing to claim some­thing pure again and clean the mess of her life. And now she’s back. She’s in that cesspool.’’

Stowe hints Vic­to­ria may be pre­pared to demon­strate more than ever what kind of a threat she can be. ‘‘ I said to Mike she’s

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