Mann with a plan
HE’S been beaten up, kidnapped, doublecrossed, had his house firebombed and fortune threatened, and his lover is dead. Life is, actor Gabriel Mann admits, kind of tough for Nolan Ross, his character on hit US drama Revenge.
“If I were Nolan, in real life, I’d probably hit the gym and take some self- defence classes, but that’s just me,” Mann laughs.
“I’d also probably use some of his money to get him a really good shrink.”
And things don’t get any easier for Ross in the cliffhanger end to Revenge season two, which airs on Australian screens tomorrow night.
It’s a finale which delivers a few answers, poses some new questions, and for shock value, sees a shock confession and dispenses with an original cast member.
It also offers hope for a third season in which Revenge returns to its roots after being panned in some circles for losing its way this year.
For a time, the action spread far beyond the rich and spoiled Hamptons, clouding central character Emily Thorne’s ( Emily VanCamp) quest for revenge on the rich and spoiled Grayson family for her father’s death.
Mid- season, the storylines swung back to The Hamptons, and the season- ender furthers the redemption by laying a few of the storylines concerning shady organisation called The Initiative to rest.
One thing that has remained constant is the tight alliance between Mann’s Ross and VanCamp’s Thorne although Mann admits sometimes he can’t understand why.
Asked why Ross a rich techy nerd with a distaste for physical hurt, continues to put himself in harm’s way for Thorne instead of opting to go away somewhere safer to enjoy his millions, Mann says it’s more than loyalty.
“It’s a dangerous alliance, but in Nolan’s
Nothing is quite what it appears. Everybody has secret.’ a dirty little
world that first summer was probably the most exciting he ever had, so once he touched the flame, he wanted to go back,” Mann says.
“Emily is such a huge infl uence on his life, so I guess if she needs something or asks him for something he’s probably going to comply to the best of his ability.”
In season two, he certainly has, and Mann has enjoyed uncovering the new facets of his character.
“That’s the beauty of this show. You’ve got these really strong personalities, and there’s always some new twist to explore, some wrinkle that’s thrown up, some angle to line up.”
“Nothing is quite what it appears. Everybody has a dirty little secret.
“Watching innocent characters slowly get corrupted by this world they’re living in is part of the intrigue.
“Any character that walks in clean to the Hamptons usually ends up walking out pretty dirty, and we usually fi nd out they have about 10 skeletons living in their closet.
“And usually that skeleton gets dragged out on a video tape, on secret camera, or anything that can be broadcast in a number of places.
“It’s hard to enter the orbit of all of these people without somehow being touched in a good way, or a very, very bad way, and usually it’s a bit of both. Nolan is no exception to that.”
Ross’s big storyline this season saw him fall in love with his company chief financial offi cer, Padma ( a surprise given that his sexuality was always “ambivalent”), only to see her kidnapped, and now dead, as the finale looms.
But his relationship with Thorne remains the one constant no matter how dangerous, exasperating or strained.
Mann describes that relationship as “almost a sibling relationship” although there is a small army of fans who call themselves “NolEms”, who would love to see the duo hook up on screen.
“Look, Nolan’s always been a bit ambiguous and left every option open, but I’m pretty sure Emily would never go there,” he laughs.
“But the beauty of this show is you can mess with all those relationships”.
First though, there’s that season finale to survive, and in recent interviews, Mann has given little away about what’s in store for Nolan Ross.
“Things will become extremely dangerous and precarious,” he hinted.
“This won’t be nearly as simple as getting him out of iron shackles.”