Even without any Speed Force-induced lightning crackle, Jay Garrick knows how to make an entrance.
The premiere of “The Flash’s” second season on The CW wasted no time in teasing the promised and highly anticipated introduction of the show’s take on the parallel world concept, a longtime DC Comics tradition first pioneered in a 1961 issue of the Scarlet Speedster’s comic that first united Barry Allen and Jay Garrick, the Flashes of Silver Age and Golden Age, respectively.
And that multiversal tease featured the live-action TV debut of Garrick, in the form of actor Teddy Sears (“Blue Bloods,” “Masters of Sex”). Sears recently sat down with the press to reveal his own experience stepping into the role of the older and more seasoned “Crimson Comet.”
How was your first experience on a live-action superhero show?
Teddy Sears: It’s thrilling, but I didn’t anticipate how thrilling it was going to be when I said yes. Besides the sort of obvious stuff, that suddenly I’m eight years-old, running around in the backyard playing superheroes with my friends — that’s sort of a given that that would happen. But what I didn’t anticipate was sort of how important it felt when I was doing it.
It’s weird and hokey and maybe very actor-y, but there was something very important that began happening, especially and most specifically, putting on that helmet… I remember shooting it [for the first time]. There was a real awe and reverence for seeing this thing, and that was absolutely not acted at all. There really was such substance in that sort of moment, so I just keep coming back to this feeling of, wow, it just feels really important. And I can’t sum it up any better than that, I guess.
Your costume has a retro quality that really plays well on screen while still looking modern and cool. Tell me the experience of making it work.
That was really fun. I wasn’t sure what they were going to do, because when you look at the 1940s [comics] when he was introduced, I feel like you see — was it an old football jersey that he puts on? Very red and very yellow going up. I wasn’t sure how they were going to handle it.
So they have successfully modernized it with this really sort of cool, almost motorcycle jacket sort of aesthetic. The jacket’s wonderful. Listen, it’s all good. The pants, the boots, but it’s really the helmet. The helmet sort of caps the whole thing off. And I love what they did to the helmet too. If you look at the helmet, and we’ll certainly have enough opportunities to, it’s been around. It’s beaten up. It’s got the dings. It’s got a wonderful patina to it. It’s seen its share of battles.
So the detail that the team put into those little things, to make it, I guess to have it arrive with a story and a history and a past, that’s really what made it work for me. And as far as me making it work, they just took my measurements, man! And it just fit.
You’ve played a lot of lawyers, doctors and professional types. How has this transition into action hero gone for you?
I mean, it’s very exciting, just in that it’s a character that is no longer in the courtroom or wearing a lab coat or something. It’s been a nice sort of progression. But yeah, this guy has a uniform like a handful of other characters I’ve played. And how does it feel? I don’t know. It feels wonderful. It feels like such a tremendous honor to try to attempt to fill this guy out and give him a real third dimension. And that aspect of a third dimension, I think is maybe a little bit different than playing the foil in a three-piece suit on a law show or something. Someone who can tend to be two dimensional.
I think that the goal is to make this guy a 100% human being who has a past, who has a history and conflicting feelings and all sort of the things that make humans so wonderful to watch and so complex to watch. But yeah, that’s an interesting point: it is another sort of getup off a different nature, but this one means a whole lot more this time, to me.
Check back with CBR News after next week’s episode, “The Flash of Two Worlds,” for more in-depth commentary from Sears and the episode’s writers.
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