THE TOMORROW PEOPLE: Madeleine Mantock Previews Astrid’s Cabin Fever and the Next Big John/Astrid Hour
February 5, 2014 by Marisa Roffman
Astrid may be one of the few “normal” humans on THE TOMORROW PEOPLE, but that doesn’t mean her life has been remotely easy: after finding herself the target of Ultra (simply for knowing Stephen’s secret), she’s found herself having to hide out with the Tomorrow People — against her will — in order to stay alive.
To get a little hint about what’s coming next, I spoke with Mad
Astrid’s in a bit of trouble! What can you tease about this week’s episode?
Is she at all intrigued by her surroundings? After all, she’s surrounded by people with powers, and a lot of cool technology…
MM: I think she’s resisting it, almost. She’s been absolutely on Stephen to tell her what’s going on, and I think it’s that thing when you know something’s going on, but you don’t know what it is, and you really want to be included because of the mystery. But now that she knows and she’s been involved in such a traumatic experience — having to pull bullets out of people and all of those things — she’s kind of like, OK, I bit off a bit more than I can chew. I don’t think I want to know, basically. She’s very much human in that way — she lived a very normal, safe life before, and would like to return to it. But Ultra does not agree with that, she knows too much, so they have to eliminate her.
She’s had a traumatic couple of episodes, for sure. How is this changing her relationship with Stephen?
MM: It’s quite stressful for them. And also Stephen has so much else going on…lots of pressure from the Founder, from his family, the new character that was introduced. They’re drifting further and further away, in that Astrid still doesn’t have the full picture of what’s going on. She now knows the general [details] in that he’s a Tomorrow Person and he has these powers, but she doesn’t know the ins and outs, and the day-to-day of what’s going on. And I think she kind of knows that. They have these conversations where he’s like, “I’m having a tough time at the moment because I have to do something I don’t want to do.” And she says, “Don’t do it then.” She doesn’t understand the magnitude of why he needs to do these things. So there’s that going on. I think it’s sensible for her to not get too involved, because she might be in the line of fire again.
Does she blame Stephen at all for the position she’s in?
MM: I mean, I don’t think she does. I know she said in episode 12 that [he’s] the reason I need protection in the first place, but I think that’s just an immediate reaction to the horrible day she’s had and that she wants to leave and go home and be with her family, and she can’t, and she lashes out at him. But I think as the episodes go on…she’s reflecting on it all and works through it, and she’s like, “I kind of asked for it. I made you let me in and that’s what happens.” I don’t think she blames him for what happened to her, because it’s not his doing. But I think she thinks its a bad situation they’re in and she’s annoyed with herself — only because now she knows. I think if it were to happen again, she would do the same thing, because initially, she was really concerned about him and just needed to know he was OK. She [didn’t think] she would be shot at and all of those terrible things [that happened]. [Now her thought is] I don’t want to know more, actually. I was fine before. I don’t think she blames him.
The end of the last episode teased that Stephen’s brother might be breaking out. Since Astrid is one of Stephen’s closest friends, does she get roped into that storyline?
MM: [Pause] Yes. [Laughs] I have to be careful what I say here! There’s another big reveal to do with that, and you’ll see more of the truth with that whole situation with this Wednesday’s episode. Moving forward, I think two or three episodes down the line, we address it further. And I’m excited, because I get to share a scene with someone I haven’t worked with yet, and it’s really quite amazing. I can’t even tell you! I will say it’s really, really exciting, and people should stick around to keep watching, because their minds will be blown.
Are you finding out these little revelations as the scripts come in? Or did the writers sit down with you and tell you what would be happening?
MM: I feel like I find out last. It just happens that the scripts are floating around set before we get the emails or hard copies. There will always be a hard copy in the hair and makeup trailer before we get the script, so we’re always running in if we have a spare 20 minutes. It makes it quite exciting in a sense, because you’ve found this secret scripture people want to read. And we do have writers that come and visit and we always try and probe them for information and go, “We won’t tell anyone if you tell us!”
Also, the scripts change so much, because there are ideas that are floating around that don’t always appear in the scripts. I think that’s why they’re hesitant to tell us things because they do change. But we don’t know where it’s going. I mean, there are a few things, a few points, where I know that happens, and that happens to that person, and that’s that person’s endgame. I know a few points that will be definite in the end. But how we get there — who knows? It’s pretty exciting, though! We’re really desperate for that information.
Well, one of the things that many fans seem to have responded to was the potential John/Astrid pairing. What was your reaction to that relationship and the buzz it has created?
MM: It’s been… [Laughs] I mean, I’m laughing, because I find it hilarious, because I’ve never experienced the fandom, and shipping, and all of those things until this moment.
I came to set that day when we shot that episode, and I think it was Robbie [Amell (Stephen)] that came up to me and was like, do you know you have to share a look with John? And I’m like, “What are you talking about?” And I thought he was just teasing me. And then I went to our script supervisor to say, “Do you want me to look at him? What is this about?”
And I didn’t know [what would come from it], and I was worried that I actually messed up Luke [Mitchell (John)]’s take. I was laughing off-camera, and then he looked at me, and I was like, “Oh, gosh, that was awful, that will be cut out.” And then when that episode aired, everybody went, [Gasps]. And “they have all these chemistry!” And this, and this, and this, and I’m thinking, “What?” I don’t know how they managed to get that out of that look that I messed up.
And then from there, it’s kind of spiraled. People are making fan videos with music on YouTube. It’s really sweet and really nice that people care and are excited about it, and when you’re excited to go to work and read the scripts, and go, “Oh, I hope we can produce something they’re going to be excited about.” So I can only say, thank you.
We also had two girls tweet Luke and I the other day saying that because of John and Astrid they had come back to watching the show. They had given up and they came back because of us. That was pretty amazing, that people liked the idea of it, even, to come back and watch the show when they had come back after they had jumped ship.
Anything else coming up for them that you can tease?
MM: Oh yes. We have a couple of scenes this week. Not touching moments, it’s more focused on her saying, “Please, can I go home?” And in episode 15, they have more of a heartwarming conversation, and he takes her on a little adventure, because she’s struggling with the aftermath and the stress of what’s happened, and is struggling to get on with her day-to-day life…and John comes and they help each other out with their problems. So episode 15 is another John and Astrid episode, I’d say.
THE TOMORROW PEOPLE airs Wednesdays at 9 PM on The CW.
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