Gabe Lowen is new to the Beauty and the Beast scene, but we can tell already that he’s not just an assistant district attorney. Speaking to Wetpaint Entertainment exclusively, actor Sendhil Ramamurthy (also known for roles on Heroes and Covert Affairs) talks about Gabe’s agenda.
Wetpaint Entertainment: Tell us how you landed on the show.
Sendhil Ramamurthy: They called up, just before Christmas, and said, “We've written this character, and we'd like for you to play him.” I wasn't familiar with the show at that point, so the folks at CW and CBS sent me some episodes to look at. And I watched it, and it was very much a procedural cop drama. And I wasn't quite sure where the character that they were talking to me about would really fit into the show. So that was my big concern, and then they put me onto a conference call with the executive producers of the show, and I said, “Listen. What I saw looks cool, and it looks like you've got this great love story going on with Vincent and Catherine. I think that's really great and it really works, but I don't know where an assistant district attorney fits into this whole story. Can you illuminate it for me?” And they were like “Well, it's because we're changing up the direction of the show, and that's where this character is going to come in. We're going to start exploring a lot more of the mythology behind the show and get deeper in Muirfield and make it slightly more serialized. And we're going to amp up all the stakes, and that's where this character comes in.” So right there, it kind of piqued my interest because, like I said, I just didn't know where the character would fit in.
You don't want to come in and solve the crime of the week?
Exactly. Then it's like Law & Order, and there's already Law & Order. So why are we doing it? So they kind of assured me that that wasn't the case. And then they were like, “This guy's ambitious.” And I was like, “Well, is his motivating force ambition? Because I've played characters where the motivating force is ambition, and that's just not very compelling. Nobody cares that somebody's ambitious just for the sake of being ambitious. It's one-note. So is there something else there for the character?” And they gave me a resounding yes. There is absolutely more there. That's just the surface. His ambition is really just a cover. And right away, I was like “Alright. I'm in. Let's do it.”
Well, lay it out for us. Who is he?
Well, he is the assistant district attorney, and he walks into the precinct, and you're introduced to him, and he says, “Okay. I'm here, and you're all terrible at your job. I'm here to fix your screw-ups.” So right away, he ruffles feathers. He pisses people off. And obviously, nobody likes being told they're doing a bad job, and so, right away, people don't like it. Catherine's suspicious of it. Tess is suspicious of it. Joe is suspicious of it. And then, at the end of the last episode you kind of find out what his plan is for solving this situation. You think you’ve got this guy figured out. And then, you see that he's actually really kind of overzealous. There's ambition, and then there's this, which is potentially like going off the deep end. Why is he so aggressive? Why is he so in your face about getting this vigilante and bringing him to justice? And then, as his backstory is revealed, and you find out a bit about his past, you find out actually that Gabe has a connection to Catherine's past. It's a very cool scene. It's one six-page scene that we shot straight through. It's like doing a play. It's like filming a scene in a play, and you never do that on television. For those who don't know, you always break things up, and you shoot it in little chunks and whatever. But this director that we're working with, Mike Rohl — who is fantastic — said, “We're going to do it straight through.” So thank God we knew our lines, Kristin and I. So much backstory comes out for Gabe and for Catherine because they don't know. They both realize a connection to Catherine's past.
So the blurb says that there's an attraction to Cat. Is the threat to Vincent as a result of that, or does he actually have a connection to Vincent through sources?
Aren't you clever? There are connections to everybody. Let's say that. Not a connection that I think people will realize at first; but through Catherine, I would say, there's a connection. I think I can say that.
But it's not a jealousy thing. Like, oh, he has the hots for this chick, and as a result...
No, no, no. That would be very kind of Sweet Valley High-ish. That's certainly not where the story is going. The relationship between Catherine and Vincent, that's the heart of the show. I don't see that changing. The relationship between Catherine and Gabe is very adversarial at first, and there's some flirtation, but it's more Gabe trying to get information out of her.
It seems more manipulative than a love connection.
Gabe senses that Catherine is hiding something. And then as the episodes go on, Catherine senses that Gabe is hiding something. So they're playing this cat-and mouse game trying to figure each other out, and then when this bombshell is dropped that they have a connection from their past, then it's can-open-worms everywhere. How is this going to play out? And I have the next episode sitting in front of me. It was placed in front of me just like while I've been doing these interviews, and the last page of it is — it's awesome. It's really cool. There's a huge reveal at the end of the ninth episode which I think is going to surprise the H‑E-double-hockey sticks out of everybody. Yeah, it's good. It's all good.
Beauty and the Beast airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on The CW.