Now in respect to the fans, I will not release any information in regards to last nights season finale of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. except to say, if you haven’t watched the episode yet, be sure to do so soon. In true Marvel Cinematic fashion, make sure you stay watching till the very end. All I can say is the episode was awesome and I can’t wait for next fall to start.
Marvel.com did a interview with Bill Paxton (John Garrett) from the show before the finale last night. I wanted to share it with all of you. John Garrett was the character that I believe most fans liked when he came on the show. Kinda the take no prisoners, we are going to win this battle no matter how outnumbered we are type of guy. When he turned and we found he was HYDRA, along with Ward, I knew then we couldn’t ever assume anything with any character.
Here is Marvel’s interview, I’m posting the full text as they were hyping it up for what would happen in last nights show.
Since early in the season, the mysterious “Clairvoyant” plagued our ragtag group of heroes in “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” before finally revealing himself as John Garrett, played by Bill Paxton.
In recent episodes, Garrett’s plans have escalated, placing the lives of two of Coulson’s agents—Fitz and Simmons—in dire jeopardy and putting the team’s back to the wall. Now, in the epic first season finale tonight at 8:00 p.m. ET on ABC, Coulson brings the fight to Garrett for a confrontation no fan of the series will want to miss.
Before that battle begins, though, we had the chance to talk with Paxton about Garrett’s beginnings, motivations and much more. Take a trip into the Clairvoyant’s psyche with the man who knows him best, and don’t miss the season finale of “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” tonight on ABC!
Marvel.com: One thing that I always like to ask people that work on S.H.I.E.L.D., because I know how secretive everything can be, is when they found out upcoming twists involving their own characters. So how did you initially find out Garret would be the Clairvoyant?
Bill Paxton: I knew, but I was not to tell anyone. It was very funny, I came down to do a fitting and to talk to everybody on a Friday afternoon. I was going to start on [the following] Monday. I remember being taken into [“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” Executive Producer] Jeph Loeb’s office and sitting there with [Executive Producers] Jed Whedon and Maurissa [Tancharoen] and I think Jeff Bell. It was just the five of us in there and I was like, “What the hell’s going on?” I just knew I was coming on to play John Garrett who had come up with Agent Coulson and they’d been trained as proteges to Nick Fury. I knew all that and then I got, “Okay, whatever we say in this room, doesn’t leave this room.”
And they told me but I was sworn to secrecy. So for the first couple of weeks of the show, I was playing it that, hey, I’ve got a secret, but even the cast members didn’t know. When Clark finally found out, he was like, “You bastard! You bastard!” And I’ve had a great time getting to know him. We’re contemporaries of sorts and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know the younger cast members, they’re terrific. So it was kind of fun to play, “I have a secret,” but I have to say, I much preferred when I was unmasked and got to come out of the closet.
Marvel.com: Once you were finally revealed in “Turn, Turn, Turn,” it really did seem like you got to cut loose and inject a lot more into the character.
Bill Paxton: I think that’s just the way. When you’re playing someone who has to hide their true identity, just as in life, when they’re able to come out and be themselves, it’s almost like seeing a flower blossom. I felt like I got to blossom as an actor and a character once I got to be who I really was.
Marvel.com: Do you enjoy getting to play the part of the villain?
Bill Paxton: Well, I don’t see him as a villain. I don’t play any villain as a villain, and I’ve found in the past, playing an antagonist, or “villain,” usually it’s their characters that carry even stronger convictions than the hero. And they’re not bad because, “Oh, I’m just going to be bad.” They usually have deep-seeded reasons for their actions, which gives them more conviction of character. So I don’t see them as villains at all. It’s just a philosophical difference.
Marvel.com: Very true.
Bill Paxton: The universe is cold. I don’t think, in the universe ultimately, there is such a thing as good or evil. It’s just what is. I think this character, which was revealed in the last episode how he was betrayed by the very organization that he was willing to give his lifeblood to, that sent him to the other side. He’s felt like he’s found a true home in Hydra, which is more of a Darwinian outfit. It’s survival of the fittest. He can relate to that. It really depends on how you look at it. How do you like that answer? [laughs]
Marvel.com: It actually leads directly into what I was going to ask you next…
Bill Paxton: I’ve become John Garrett! You’re not talking to Bill Paxton, you’re talking to John Garrett!
Marvel.com: It’s a new level of method acting. Like you say, in these past couple of episodes, we’ve gotten to learn more about Garrett’s motivations and why he’s doing everything he’s doing. Again, going back to the mechanics of how that works, when did you start to learn that?
Bill Paxton: Like I said, whoever I’m playing, I try to create a conviction. Let me put it this way: As an actor, you don’t ever judge the character you’re playing. That would be death. So I knew that he was with Hydra and he obviously had his reasons and he was a double agent. I knew he had to use the friendship that he had with Coulson as an agent to find out what he needed to know for Hydra. But at the same time, his real thing was that he was dying and that was not revealed to me right away. I knew that he was using this machination of the Clairvoyant to find out where Coulson was taken and where he was revived and whatever it was that revived him. That was my first priority because I was facing a mortality issue.
Marvel.com: With everything that we’re talking about with how you seek to really create a character in Garrett that people can relate to, what do you personally find most relatable in Garrett?
Bill Paxton: That he’s resilient. I don’t know if I relate to that, but I admire his resilience. I admire his resilience and I think he’s a survivor.
Marvel.com: Perfect, thanks so much!
Bill Paxton: Hail Hydra! [laughs]
Marvel.com: Hail Hydra!
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