Just when you think that pesky alien is off your planet, he crash lands … again. After deciding not to complete his mission and leave Earth and go home, “Harry” once again finds himself stranded in Patience, Colorado.
As the season two premiere of Resident Alien gets closer, Nerds and Beyond got the opportunity to speak with Corey Reynolds (Sheriff Mike Thompson), Alan Tudyk (Harry Vanderspeigle), Sara Tomko (Asta Twelvetrees), and Alice Wetterlund (D’Arcy Bloom) about their characters and the upcoming season of Resident Alien.
Nerds and Beyond: Corey, how much of the Sheriff’s rants are scripted compared to adlibbed?
Corey Reynolds: You know we do a lot of improvising and adlibbing. They are pretty open to some of my rants. We always get one off with what’s on the page, so we always have that in the safety net, but I say when you are talking about the rants, in particular, it’s probably about 50/50. You know, and I think to piggyback off something that Alan (Tudyk) was talking about working with Alex (Borstein) and seeing stuff that two actors who were just improvising and just going at it. I think that’s the fun thing as actors on the show is that we do so many takes that we don’t know which one they are going to use. So they can construct different things depending upon the choices they make in the editing room, and for us, it makes it interesting to watch the shows to see what’s constructed from all the ingredients we put in the pie. And that’s not to take anything away from our writers and Chris Sheridan. What they start with and the foundation they give us script-wise is always, you know, laugh out loud as you’re reading it funny. You know we get to add our icing on the top and put our little sprinkles on top when we get to filming, and that is where that collaborating comes into play which that’s fulfilling as an actor.
Nerds and Beyond: And Alan, how is it playing multiple versions of Harry?
Alan Tudyk: Oh right, it’s fun. That’s right; I’ve been thinking about how much this character is challenging in that it’s drama, it’s comedy, it’s broad physical stuff, it’s lines, and it’s action. But it is also Harry, the alien; Harry, the guy the alien kills and takes over; and then last season, there was zombie Harry, so it was a version of the guy who was alive, but now he’s dead and rotting in the freezer, but he’s animated and living in the imagination of the alien. It’s great.
Corey Reynolds: And he’s great at it to.
Alan Tudyk: Thanks, man. It’s cool to see them play off each other, you know. I didn’t realize how much of an alien … I thought the alien was kind of very subtly different, then I saw him talking to the zombie me, and oh wow, he’s really an oddball. He’s weird. So I don’t know. It’s fun. It’s always fun as an actor to be challenged with any role, and this one never stops doing that for me.
Nerds and Beyond: I was wondering how between keeping Harry’s secret and seeing Jay (Kaylayla Raine) and D’Arcy get closer, how that affects their (Asta and D’Arcy’s) dynamic and friendship throughout the season?
Sara Tomko: I am so jealous, Sarah. I am so jealous. I think it’s nice for Asta and Harry. They get closer because he obviously needs to rely on her now that he’s back, but she also pushes him out of the nest to make new friends. And while that’s happening, she’s seeing a new friendship forming between her daughter and best friend. It’s really, really hard for her to take. I’m not quite sure how that relationship dynamic will turn out with Jay, but I know it causes a little bit of hesitancy with D’Aarcy because she’s jealous. So, she kind of takes it out on her, and we are going to see them have, I think, just this moment of being angry with one another because D’Arcy also knows that she’s lying to her. And even though you see this beautiful scene in (season two) episode one where they come to and have this moment of like, I know what your secret is. She thinks it’s about the alien, but it’s really about Jay. It’s a great metaphor for how we are doing this dodging throughout the season of them lying to each other still while still keeping this friendship which means a lot to the both of them.
Alice Wetterund: Yeah, it’s this big secret that’s between them that essentially is the premise of the show, this resident alien coming between these two incredibly close friends who rely on each other for everything, and we continuously have to get over that. So the whole season one into season two is Asta and D’Arcy making amends and coming back together and figuring it out over and over. And Asta almost telling D’Arcy over and over again because it’s just so unnatural for her to keep something this big from her, but she has to. So that’s sort of the dynamic with them, and that provides the tension. If D’Arcy ever finds out, we’ll see what the conflict becomes then. But with Jay, Jay is a teenager, and so is D’Arcy emotionally speaking. So it’s just natural for D’Arcy she doesn’t see anything wrong with it. She has no clue what it would be like to have a daughter, and she doesn’t want to have a clue. She’s just like, “yeah, we’re friends whatever,” and in a lot of ways, her thoughtlessness leads to this conflict with her best friend.
Sara Tomko: It didn’t occur to me until you just said that Alice that it’s like a way for both of you to get closer to me.
Alice Wetterlund: Yeah, for sure.
Thank you to NBC Universal and the cast for their time today. Stay tuned for our interview with showrunner Chris Sheridan coming soon!
Resident Alien season 2 returns on January 26 at 9 p.m. ET on SYFY. Check out our other Resident Alien coverage here.