Monica Raymund and James Badge Dale on ‘Hightown’ and Preserving the Humor with Intense Materials



Set in Cape Cod, the Starz drama sequence Hightown follows Jackie Quiñones (Monica Raymund) on her very rocky journey to sobriety, as she discovers a physique on the seashore and decides to aim to clear up the case. The Nationwide Marine Fisheries Service agent quickly clashes with Sergeant Ray Abruzzo (James Badge Dale) with the Cape Cod Interagency Narcotics Unit, which complicates all of the items, as they every start to spin uncontrolled.

All through this interview with Collider, co-stars Monica Raymund and James Badge Dale talked about being drawn to such troublesome characters, holding a wit and humor within the intense supplies, the good vibe that that they had working collectively on set, why the thriller of all of it gives to the current’s enchantment, and the way they felt about their characters by the end of the season.

hightown-poster-01Collider: These characters are all so fascinating, and however all a little bit bit of a big quantity, of their very personal strategies. When this received right here your method, what have been you knowledgeable about who these characters could possibly be?

MONICA RAYMUND: In case you audition for it, you study as quite a bit as you’re able to. Finding out for Jackie, I knew that it was one factor I wanted to do attributable to all the layers and on account of she was messy. It was very precise, though. I understood why this girl is attempting to find out who she is and uncover her private redemption, in a world of chaos.

JAMES BADGE DALE: Monica received right here on for us. She’s the anchor of this current. I sat down and study it afterwards, and I was in order that intoxicated. Television reveals are fully totally different because you’re making this long-term dedication to 1 factor and primarily saying, “I’m ready to reside and play on this world.” And there was one factor about (current creator) Rebecca [Perry Cutter]’s writing. I was like, “I can reside and play on this on account of they’re so layered and flawed.” There are moments of magnificence and compassion and empathy with these characters, however moreover, all people’s sick, all people’s merely attempting to fill this void, all people has an dependancy, of their very personal method, and all people’s merely attempting to do the best they’ll.

James, having not too way back achieved a string of darker characters, do you ever need you might merely do a comedy?

DALE: Yeah, I would like I was a funnier explicit individual.

RAYMUND: You indicate, you’re not gonna be on a sitcom, anytime shortly?

DALE: I’ve gotta go to clown college. That’s intense supplies, nevertheless on the related time, there’s this wit and humor to it. We merely had this good vibe on set. We come to work and presumably we’re coping with some important topic materials that , I don’t want to snort about, nevertheless we’ve gotta maintain points like. That’s how you can have good vitality on set. When the cameras roll, Monica and I are all through. We’re pinging over proper right here, and over there, they usually permit us to do our issue, after which they edit it collectively.

RAYMUND: And what was cool concerning the current is that there are these fulfilling moments. It’s maybe busting each other’s balls in a single scene with him, or Junior and I having this sibling second the place we’re having fun with with each other. So, there are moments of lightness by the use of it. For the characters on this world, it’s worthwhile to uncover laughter in darkness. It’s a should to find what that’s, in order that to stand up within the morning and survive.


Image by means of Starz

Monica, I had no idea that there was such an element as a Nationwide Marine Fisheries Suppliers agent. What was it choose to seek out out about that?

RAYMUND: I was like, “Is that the Coast Guard?” I didn’t know. Even though I grew up in Florida, on the friggin’ water, I’d nonetheless on no account heard of the Nationwide Marine Fisheries Suppliers. As soon as I went to my dad and mother they usually have been like, “What do you play?” I was like, “A Nationwide Marine Fisheries Suppliers agent.” They’ve been like, “What’s that?” I as like, “I really feel they regulate lobster and fish.” Within the script, I say, “I’m a fish cop.” I purchased to expertise alongside a few cases with people, and I purchased to drive a ship and uncover methods to can be found in at an angle, the method that they do. That was really fulfilling.

With as numerous a big quantity as she is, how do you suppose she’s even been able to protect her job, the least bit?

RAYMUND: She’s charming as hell. She is conscious of the best way to work it, and he or she’s manipulative. She is conscious of that she’s purchased this swag, and he or she makes use of it to get what she wants. And likewise, then there’s the aspect of being a helpful alcoholic until you’re not. She retains pushing the envelope and going and going on account of, if there’s been no repercussions however, why stop, until we start seeing it affect her job and her relationships.

James, with you’re a character, we don’t really get his background, initially. Is that one factor that we’ll see further of?

DALE: Part of the ability of the method it’s been written is that you just don’t know heaps about Ray. stays a thriller, as to the place he’s coming from and what his end sport is. That may develop further, over time. Ray is a classy man doing troublesome points.

RAYMUND: What’s sexy about this current is that there’s thriller with all of us, and I really feel that audiences are gonna want to see further attributable to that. There’s solely quite a bit we’re ready to offer on account of we every have quite a bit to cowl. It’s how we run by the use of the world and type the world spherical us. We don’t perception anybody. We’ve clearly been hurt. Finding out the best way to current ourselves is a very troublesome course of.


Image by means of Starz

Does this current moreover actually really feel like a little bit little bit of an ongoing puzzle, as far as who’s associated with who and who you’ll get to cross paths with? 

DALE: I like tales like that, the place you can have a central event. It’s not a whodunit. You acknowledge who shot Sherry and me within the head, immediately. It’s not a fixing a felony offense current. It’s the repercussions, and also you see how that impacts all people’s lives. It’s solely a really beautiful, eight-episode story that weaves collectively.

RAYMUND: And what’s cool about that’s that it’s purchased quite a bit further to go. It’s a narrative that’s primarily a really prolonged movie, and we’ve solely merely begun the primary act, with this main season. What’s incredible is that you just change into so invested within the characters relationships to this investigation and the way they intersect that it makes me want to see what happens, in case you do get a Season 2. What happens to these people? The place are they going? How are they going to take care of this now?

DALE: This current begins off the place all people’s functioning, and it’s a sluggish boil. As every episode retains happening, it merely will get further and additional heated, and all of the items entails a head. It’s a stupendous issue that each a type of characters should face the truth and take care of that.

Did you’re feeling in one other means about who these characters have been, by the point that you just purchased to the end of the season, and do you suppose the viewers will, as successfully?

RAYMUND: I undoubtedly felt nearer to my character on account of I’m utilizing together with her, all by means of each episode. I felt far more defending over her on account of I beloved her. I started to love the character that I was having fun with and understand her. I wanted to deal with it. So, within the course of the end, that could be the excellence. Within the beginning, you can have an concept of presumably what the character is and the way you’ll technique it, nevertheless you’re nonetheless very quite a bit exploring. By the end of the season, even supposing you’re on no account achieved exploring, you’ve realized heaps concerning the place the character has come from, and that informs the place the character is gonna go. It’s a very rich experience.

DALE: I had the precise reverse experience. As a result of it saved going, I started to actually really feel nearer and nearer and additional associated to it, and by the end, I was like, “Get Ray off of me. I would really like him off of me. I would really like his clothes off.”

RAYMUND: That’s cool that we had fully totally different experiences. It’s personal. That’s a superb intimate question.

DALE: You start off with all of these ideas. You steal from proper right here and also you steal from there, and also you do all of this evaluation, nevertheless on the end of the day, it’s all personal. You take possession, and you then definately run with it. All of us current as a lot as work and we do our jobs to the higher of our expertise. It’s a very expert set. Nevertheless all of us have these fully totally different reactions, on the end. It’s not easy to reside as one other individual, for a protracted time interval.

RAYMUND: Notably everytime you’re not ending it. We’re not tying any unfastened ends. They’re open. It’s very open.

Hightown airs on Sunday nights on Starz.


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