Marvel.com has announced that Patrick Brennan has signed on to play Marcus Daniels a.k.a. Blackout in "Providence", airing Tuesday, April 15, and the currently-untitled 19th Episode on Tuesday, April 22. Take a look at the first photos of Patrick Brennan as Blackout, then read on for more information regarding this character.
Blackout debuted in Nova #19 in 1976, with this upcoming episode marking the character's live-action debut. However, his powers will be slightly altered from the comics, with this character possessing the ability to suck the energy out of anything around him.
We reported earlier this week that Amy Acker is guest starring as Audrey, the long-distance lover of Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg), who doesn't realize that her boyfriend is still alive and well, as he protects her from a mysterious threat that re-emerges from her past. In an interview with Marvel.com, Patrick Brennan revealed new details about his character, who appears to be the threat Coulson is protecting Audrey from.
"This is the way they explained it to me: This guy, Marcus Daniels, a.k.a. Blackout, was shrouded in darkness, his soul, everything about him was shrouded in darkness until he comes across this Cello player. And the music was the only light that came into his soul, and it gave him hope and it gave him some sense of what light was. I thought to myself, oh my god, you don't even need to explain anything else. Because music, to me, is what gets me through most of the time. My kids, my wife, and music. That aspect of it totally intrigued me. I thought that was quite beautiful and very interesting, that aspect of the character."
The actor also explained that he had auditioned for several other Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. roles throughout the first season, before getting the call to appear as Blackout.
"I had been in for Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. several times for other things, for other parts, and I know that they liked me so this came along and they actually offered it to me. I didn't have to go in and read for it, which was a first for me. I didn't know anything about the part, they kind of gave me the gist of it and then I had an in-depth conversation with a couple of the [producers] on the phone. And the whole time, I'm like, 'You guys are putting me on, right? This is ridiculous. It's so cool.' It's just rare to have a character that's [this] interesting. There's just something to it. I've been working pretty steady here for the last three or four years, and then this bit came along and it was so empathetically explained to me. Not to sound all actor-y on you, but I identified with the character. I don't know how you feel, [with knowing] the character and all, but I identified with the character very much. I got to play a villain with a heart and superpowers. It was just a thrill."
He also talked about the practical effects that they employed on the set, since his character causes the lights to go out everywhere he appears.
"You know what's cool about that? I thought that they would do that [in post-production] but on the set it was happening all around me, so I got to act with it happening all around me. How cool is that? It was a lot of fun and I'll be a hero in my five-year old's heart. And my thirteen-year nephew. All of a sudden I'm cool, which is a great thing."
When asked if the practical effect of the lights flickering on and off helped enhance his performance, Patrick Brennan had this to say.
"Are you kidding me? Of course, of course. It just made it fun and you got to be in the world. It's why actors get in the business. They play dress up and they want to be a super hero. It was the most fun job that I've ever had, and I'm not being silly when I say this, a great bunch of people to work with. From the top on to the bottom, I couldn't believe it. It's just a great gang of people."
He also talked about the fine line he needed to walk to make this villain sympathetic to the viewers.
"I think that the key to approaching any villain [is], it's much more impactful when the audience can see some shred of good in the quote-unquote villain. I was watching Scarface last night, and he was a monster. But there are certain scenes in the movie where it shows that he has compassion, it shows that he has a soul, and then you're on his side, and when he dies at the end, you're heartbroken. Why would you be heartbroken about someone who kills people, deals drugs, and does all these horrible things? Because you see the other side of him too, and I think it's true with people. People aren't all bad or all good. I think that's what I love about the character. You can see the heart in him. He wasn't just a monster which is a beautiful thing to play. I wouldn't know how to play it all bad anyway. I'd have to find something in him, do you know what I mean?"
The actor also revealed his favorite moment on the set.
"We shot the first scene of the show last, on my last night. It was Marcus stepping off of a boat, when you first see him, and literally the boats in the harbor went off. As he walked down the harbor, the lights went off. It was like a kid in the candy store. They made me this incredible coat, it was a trenchcoat with a collar sticking up, that as soon as I put it on I felt like a villain. The costume was great. The people who did this jacket made it special. I tried to steal it but it didn't work out. That last night was exciting [but] the whole thing was great, I couldnt pick one [moment]. I really couldn't."
In related news, ABC has released yet another clip from next week's Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode, "End of the Beginning", featuring Agent Triplett (B.J. Britt) revealing exactly why he wants to catch the Clairvoyant to Agent Ward (Brett Dalton).