Returning guest star Jack Coleman teases tonight’s CASTLE: “It’s just good, clean fun!”

JACK COLEMANJack Coleman returns to CASTLE tonight as Senator Bracken, the man responsible for the murder of Beckett’s mother.  Their tense standoff from the previous episode has left them both shaken, and when another grisly murder brings them back together, you can bet nothing will be the same.

I spent some time chatting about Bracken and CASTLE with Coleman, and I tried to get him to tell me how it all turns out (he doesn’t), or if we’ll see him again (he wouldn’t say).  Check it out!

Fans are excited to see Bracken come back and see how that plays out!
It’s just good clean fun!

What is it that brings you and the character back to CASTLE this time?
I think, in terms of their overall story, this guy has been out there for a while, and it’s fun to touch base from time to time with this looming presence.  It hasn’t been dissolved, and it’s not like her hatred for him has gone away, or her desire to bring him down has gone away, so there’s this horrible, lurid crime that seems to lead her right to him. And it does, but it’s a lot more complicated than it seems at first, and there’s all kinds of twists here.  And then the two of them are locked in this dance, and it’s an ever shifting power struggle, and there’s a lot more in this episode of Bracken in this episode than there was in that first episode, of course all related to Bracken.

JACK COLEMAN, STANA KATICWhen we met Bracken, Kate didn’t know his involvement.  Did you play this return differently now that we know as an audience, and Bracken knows, that Kate knows his involvement in her mother’s murder?
Yes.  I mean, she’s got that over his head, that she has information on him; she knows.  He has to decide very quickly whether or not he thought she was bluffing, and clearly came down on the side that she’s not bluffing.  She had the file number; so he has to take this seriously.  She has this over his head; he has over her head the fact that she’s, I think that she’s so emotionally wrapped up in this guy, and this horrible thing that he did, in killing her mother, that I think he feels that she is going to be a little bit blinded by her hatred, and by that passion, and feel that he can probably maneuver around her, expecting her to behave rashly, but she’s also a professional, so she has to realize her own sense of morality, in terms of how she is going to deal with him.

Playing such a bad guy – is it freeing as an actor to be this evil?
[laughs] It’s fun stuff to play!  As a villain, you’ve got these dark secrets, you’ve done these horrible things.  As an actor, all you really want is to have an effect.  You want to make sure that you’re villainy has an effect on the hero, because otherwise, you’re sort of being bad in a vacuum, and no one sort of cares.  If your villainy is directly related to our hero, then it enflames the passion both of the character and of the audience.  They may hate you, but they’re not going to be indifferent to you. For an actor, that’s the thing that you really want to play.  You want to play someone that has an impact on the story and has an impact on the characters.

JACK COLEMANHad you been a fan of CASTLE before getting involved, or did you catch up after getting involved?
I had seen the show; I loved the mood of it and it reminded me of MOONLIGHTING.  The two of them are terrific together; I was really happy for Stana.  She was on HEROES briefly, and I said, oh my god, this girl’s a star, and I was right!  I certainly had not seen every episode, but they very kindly cut together an hour long DVD of all of the scenes that were pertinent to the murder of Beckett’s mother and sent it to me.  So I just sat down with the DVD and watched the stream of all of these scenes, and got all of the background information.   It was very nice of them to do, and very helpful for me.  Although I had seen a number of episodes, I wasn’t on top of all of the mythology.

I don’t know if you can say, depending on how the episode turns out, could Bracken return, if the option is there?
It’s a really fun character, especially this last episode.  Who knows what could happen, but if they decided that they wanted to have him return, I would be happy to.

Will we see you return to THE OFFICE as the series winds down?
You [saw me last week] and then I just finished an episode, and I don’t know when that airs.  Probably February or March; I will continue on, and in fact, over the last couple of episodes that I’ve done, I have more to do than I normally do, so that was fun.

Does doing parts here and there, does it make you want to get back on TV and do a weekly series?
Yeah, that of course is the great ambition of those of us who are in this business is to have a steady job, and a place to go to work every day.  The real joy of a series is the way you bond with your cast members, and your crew; you have a home.  In this business, you’re a gypsy, and the gypsy life gets less and less charming as you get holder.  Having a home, and a second-hand with people, and you all speak the same language, and you’ve got the inside jokes, and you all know what you’re talking about, and you know the crew, and the crew knows you, and you know that directors and the producers and the writers.  There’s a lot to be said for having that kind of safe haven, because there’s a learning curve when you go on a new show. They don’t really know you; you don’t really know them.  The director’s tend to eye you somewhat suspiciously, like, oh, I’m going to have to mold this guy, rather than realize you can make their life easier.  I have to say, Tom was absolutely terrific, the director for this episode [of CASTLE], Tom Wright, I really, really loved working with him, and I loved the kind of, after a day, he sort of trusted me, and I trusted him, and a really nice working short-hand!

CASTLE’s all new episode, “Recoil,” premieres tonight on ABC at 10/9c.  For more information on the show, head to CASTLE’s site on!