Travelers: Eric McCormack and Nesta Cooper preview crazy Season 2

Season 1 of Travelers wrapped with one hell of a cliffhanger. In a stressful face-off in the barn, Trevor (Jared Abrahamson) and Grace (Jennifer Spence) were both shot moments before Trevor could destroy the quantum frame.

Those final moments were preceded by some major information: Shelter 41 had collapsed and been taken over by The Faction, people unsupportive of the director and the grand plan. By the end of the instalment, Carly (Nesta Cooper), MacLaren (Eric McCormack), Marcy (MacKenzie Porter), Trevor and Philip (Reilly Dolman) had been captured by the FBI, headed by MacLaren’s partner Walt (Arnold Pinnock). Crazy, right? Episode 1 of Season 2—returning Monday, Oct. 16, at 9 p.m. ET on Showcase—blows that out of the water. Seriously. And that’s all thanks to new cast member Enrico Colantoni, who plays Vincent, a mysterious character whose back story takes up much of Monday’s return. We spoke to McCormack and Cooper about what fans can expect as Brad Wright’s creation hurtles into its sophomore season.

Enrico Colantoni … how did that casting come about? Was that a result of Brad wanting to expand the world in Season 2?
Eric McCormack: As you see in the final image in Monday’s first episode, we now know who Enrico was playing in Season 1. As for it being Enrico, I take my one producer credit: Brad showed me the script and said, ‘Who do you think should play that?’ I knew we were going to go for Canadian cast across the board, so I immediately thought of Enrico. What he did on Person of Interest reminded me of the kind of intensity and danger that he could bring. But what he does in the first five minutes of the premiere is so exciting and so heartbreaking. Somebody watching the show must have been wondering, ‘Well, when did all of this traveler business start?’ The question gets answered, and in such a cool way.

When I got the first script, I was reading it and saying, ‘Where’s the barn?’ But there is a such a good reason to set up [Monday’s return] the way that we do.

Let’s discuss the Season 1 finale in the barn. The FBI rolls in and there is Walt. The cat is out of the bag.
EM: ‘The cat is out of the bag! How can it be out? It’s only Season 1?!’ That’s what fans have been saying to me.

Nesta Cooper: There are so many questions going through our heads. Carly didn’t kill MacLaren even though the director told her to. Am I not going to get saved because I didn’t complete the mission? What’s going to happen to the quantum frame? What is it capable of?

Travelers is a very active show with lots of hand-to-hand combat. Do you do your own stunts?
NC: We’ve had the same stunt team for both seasons. In Season 1, I was a twiggy and very weak. [Laughs.] I’m still weak but I work out a lot more now. The stunt team has seen how I fight and carry myself and I’m lucky because the writing has taken this physically strong person and put her into the body of a weak, single mom. Carly is able to grow with me as I’ve learned to carry myself. This season I’m able to do a lot of my own stunts, like when I flip people and when I punch people.

What can you say about the relationship between Carly and MacLaren going forward?
EM: I hope what’s been made clear to the audience is that it’s something that should never have been brought into the past. We were clearly fraternizing in boot camp and that probably shouldn’t have happened, but who cares because it’s a dystopian, awful future. I wasn’t sure how long the relationship would go and I was surprised how it’s kind of come to a stop because of MacLaren’s feelings for [his wife] Kat [Leah Cairns]. But I hope it still comes up as a thing. It’s an unsettled score.

NC: To me, it’s still a thing for Carly. I had imagined that Carly did not open up to a lot of people ever, and MacLaren was her person. And when she felt betrayed by him, it was a big loss for her. I hope it continues to be a thing and I’ll certainly be playing it that way. When we pick up, she’ll be facing those feelings head-on.

Not only does Amanda Tapping have a role in Travelers this season, but she directed an episode as well. What was it like working with her?
NC: Literally a dream.

EM: There is a such an ease with her. Watching her run a crew is effortless. She knows what she’s doing 10 minutes before anyone else does.

Travelers airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on Showcase; Season 2 returns on Monday, Oct. 16.

Image courtesy of Corus.

 

 

Greg David
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Greg David

Prior to becoming a television critic and owner of TV, Eh?, Greg David was a critic for TV Guide Canada, the country's most trusted source for TV news. He has interviewed television actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes folks from hundreds of television series from Canada, the U.S. and internationally. He is a podcaster, public speaker, weekly radio guest and educator, and past member of the Television Critics Association.
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