Talking CASTLE with Seamus Dever

I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again.  This season of CASTLE is firing on all cylinders.  It’s fun and exciting, even with all of that murder sprinkled in, and the cast just seems to be enjoying themselves all of the time.  It’s one of those shows that I have to watch the night it airs, because I don’t want to miss out.

I had a chance to speak with Seamus Dever, Detective Kevin Ryan on the show, about the cast chemistry, the fun they have on set, what’s coming up tonight, and what he’d love to learn about Ryan in a future episode!

CASTLE is one of my favorite shows on TV.
Excellent, excellent, love to hear that!

Is it as fun to shoot on set as it seems that it would be from watching it?  It’s so light, it’s fun, even though you’re dealing with all of this murder.
It’s one of those things where we all really get along, which is rare in television that everybody is sort of like “oh yeah”.  We all like seeing each other, we all like working with each other as a result of that.  It makes things a lot easier.  And so I think the fun that you see, comes across, due to a large part from the fun we have together, just hanging out.  It’s a good set, and I think that comes across on screen.  A lot of people have commented on that, that it seems a lot of fun.  It’s all true!

The way that you interact on Twitter, seeing you interact together at Comic Con, it seems like you’ve known each other forever. Had you known anyone before you started shooting?
Everyone met [when we started].  I hadn’t known Jon, which was the biggest thing, even though we know like 50 people in common, we’ve realized that since.  That’s a very LA thing.  Stana had come and seen me in a play.  I knew Susan because we’re in a theatre company together, but barely knew her, like I’d done a couple of readings with her.  That’s it [laughs].  The only person I knew sort of well is Arye Gross, who comes on as Dr Perlmutter every once in a while.  He’s a friend of mine in real life from before CASTLE started.  But the rest of them, it was all new, all fresh.  Hadn’t met Nathan.

I feel like this season is firing on all cylinders.  They’re keeping the Castle and Beckett relationship alive but not alive.  They’re giving the supporting cast more to do.  It seems like it’s one great punch after another.  What can we expect from tonight’s new episode?
Anatomy of a Murder is the next episode.  It’s sort of our homage, or tip of our hat to GREY’S ANATOMY.  That’s sort of the biggest part of it.  It goes many different directions there.  It was a fun episode to shoot.  The beginning murder scene, I think everyone is going to get a kick out of.  It takes place at a funeral home, so we walk in and it’s a Jewish funeral, so there are all of these mourners coming in, and all of a sudden, the pallbearers can’t lift the body in the casket, and the casket opens up and tumbles open.  The dead man, who they were burying, but also another corpse was inside the body with him.  It’s great, it turns out the guy who was being buried had three ex wives and they’re all arguing with each other and there are some great characters.  So it goes from there, and it happens to be connected to a hospital, and there’s a man there, who is one of the suspects.  There is a debate if he’s a McDreamy and a McSteamy.  I don’t know if Andrew [Marlowe, the creator] is friends with but I know he talks with Shonda Rhimes, so there are some tips of our hat to her as well.  So yeah, this is our GREY’S ANATOMY episode, I guess you would say.Oh and Gina appears to stir the pot, with the whole thing.  I think we get to see her again and check back in with Castle’s relationship with her.  And there’s some bro stuff with Esposito and Ryan.

I was watching last week’s episode with the arrival of Kate’s new boyfriend.  Just watching the four of you stand there as she walked away with her new boyfriend, it almost seems like everybody, not just Castle, is protective of that core relationship.
Yeah, it’s sort of interesting.  That last shot of us all ganged together.  What did Rob Bowman our director, say?  He wanted it to be like our gang of misfits all hanging out together.  There’s Esposito with the neck brace, and we’re all just sort of like, “yeah”, there’s this guy who is 6’4 or 6’5 and really good looking.  It’s like, what are you doing here, you good looking guy? [laughs]  We don’t have any ammo other than he’s the new guy!

A lot of questions that came up when I put out the call for questions had to do with what your favorite things are about Ryan.  What do you love about this guy?
I guess the thing that developed with this show that I never really thought would be my favorite part of it is the comedy.  I’ve never done half hour comedy on television at all.  I’ve done some things that were funny, but most of the time, the last six or seven years, have all been drama.  You know, playing junkies, murderers, rapists, crazy people like that. But the funny thing about that, all of my growing up in high school, my father directed our plays in high school, I did nothing but comedy.  Sort of learning how a joke would work, and experimenting on our own with plays in high school, sort of became all that I did.  And sort of learning how to get a laugh, learning a lot about timing, the things that were sort of a great training route.  And then sort of after high school, I put that aside and did nothing but serious stuff.  I went over to Russia and studied at the Moscow Art Theatre, did very serious things.  Chekhov, Shakespeare, and became known for that.  To come back to this, I never thought that I would take this kind of u-Turn, become series regular on a one hour TV show, and ask questions like, what’s funnier, if I do it like this or if I do it like this?  If I do this, what’s the funnier choice?  That’s my favorite part – learning a very truthful way to doing comedy.  This isn’t half hour comedy.  Nathan’s a good leader with that. He’ll do something funny some time and the director will go, why don’t you do that, and he’ll say “no, I’m not going to do that.  What’s the truth in that?”  The truth – you can’t do anything too outlandish.  It’s funny to do funny things but it has to be based in truth, and the humor comes out of truth, rather than I just did something funny.  It’s a subtle line that you shouldn’t cross when you’re dealing with one hour drama and putting comedy into it.  So that’s my favorite thing!

What would you love to see for this character in the future?
I don’t know if any of the fans have noticed, but I certainly have.  We meet people that Castle is connected to.  We meet people that Beckett is connected to.  Like people who commit crimes.  Castle seems to know at least half of the corpses that we run into, or has met them at a party or has worked for them or whatever.  Esposito has been connected to a few people, people from his past.  He knew Michael Trucco’s character from another precinct.  He knew a couple of people from his past.  But we never meet anyone that Ryan knows.  I would love to explore the fact that we don’t really meet people that Ryan knows and maybe there’s a reason.  Maybe Ryan’s home life or his family is so different from what we see on the show.  Maybe his parents are professors or something and disapproved of him being a cop or something.  But there’s some reason that we haven’t been connected to any of Ryan’s past.  I know he was in narcotics, so maybe there is a dark past there.  I want it to be a surprise to the audience.  This guy that we think we know, we may not really know.  So therefore, Castle and Beckett don’t really know him either [laughs].

That sounds like a really good idea!  Get Andrew on that!
I’m sure he’s working on something.  We’ve been talking about it for a long time, so we’ll see [laughs]!