We recently spoke (at Wondercon 2008 in San Francisco) with the cast and creators of CBS-TV’s back-from-the-ashes post-apocalyptic drama Jericho. And we’re running these interviews in three parts here on FEARnet.com. Part 1, featuring our conversation with Lennie James (Jericho’s Robert Hawkins) ran on Friday, and today we’re featuring interviews with James’ castmates—hot couple Alicia Coppola (a.k.a. Mimi Clark) and Brad Beyer (Stanley Richmond). Be sure to check back tomorrow when we get you ready for the show’s penultimate episode Tuesday night with even more interviews!
By Joseph McCabe
How would you describe your character, Mimi?
I’m pretty much the only out-of-towner. I’m from Washington D.C. and I’m an IRS agent, and I go to Jericho for one day only to audit this poor farming family. Then—boom!—the big bombs; and I’m stuck there. My character has this wonderful journey, a very painful and scary journey, but really wonderful and beautiful. I start off one way and end up completely differently. I start off in Jimmy Choo’s and Gucci, and now I’m in Timberlands and a flannel. And because I don’t know anybody, I go back to the farming family that I audit and they take me in. Then a love affair ensues between Stanley Richmond and myself.
How does season 2 compare with season 1?
I think that in some ways it’s better. Usually, an episodic show has 22 episodes to unfurl its story. But this season, because we were only given 7. It’s really streamlined, it’s really packed. There’s no lovely establishing shot of the landscape. No, there’s stuff going on every second, every minute, of that hour of television. Because of that it’s very fast paced, it’s very fun; and I think it really combines the military aspect and the excitement and the drama of everything that’s going on between the two towns of Jericho and Newbourne, and the military itself, with the lives of the characters of Jericho. And I think, with the characters, you really see what the people are made of. You really see their mettle—when their backs are against the wall, what do they do. And it’s pretty exciting.
Can you comment on what resolution we can expect to see for Mimi and Stanley’s storyline?
In the first season, Mimi loses everything that she’s ever known, and she has to fight to survive—everything she’s ever known and loved is completely gone. In the same vein, now that she has survived, and with her new love for Stanley and his family, you’re going to see her again have to fight for what she believes in and fight for her new family to survive. And you’re going to see some resolution as to what happens between Stanley and Mimi, what happens to the Richmond farm, and also what happens to the town of Jericho. Again, you’ll see it’s people rising up in the face of disaster.
What is your greatest fear?
Something happening to my child.
Brad, can you talk a little about the journey your character—Stanley Richmond—has taken?
He’s a young farmer in the town of Jericho, Kansas, who sort of never got out of town because he had to stay back and take care of the family farm. His parents were killed in a car crash when he was young. The bomb goes off and everyone’s sort of faced with these different situations, and one of his situations is that this woman comes from the IRS to take his farm away because he owes back taxes, and they fall in love, ironically, and it’s about that relationship and how everyone else in town is dealing with these overwhelming situations.
How has season 2 been shaping up?
It’s a lot of action. It’s like 22 episodes crammed into 7. It’s really fast paced, a lot of things going on. But, I’ve said this before, these seven are the best seven we’ve ever done. So we’re all very excited about it.
How hopeful are you for a third season?
Well, we’re hopeful, but it’s tough because our show is one of those shows where a lot of people are DVR’ing it, a lot of people are watching it on the internet, and, unfortunately, a lot of times that doesn’t translate well on the Nielson ratings. But hopefully CBS will take that into consideration. And, if not, hopefully we’ll find another network.
What is your greatest fear?
Wow, that’s a big question. My greatest fear would be losing the people that you’re closing to—and dying in a fire. Yeah, dying in a fire.