Last Friday marked the premiere of the third season of Blindspot, a show filled with mystery, intrigue, and adventure. The previous season ended on an intense note, fast-forwarding 2 years into the future as Kurt Weller (Sullivan Stapleton) finally found his wife Jane (Jaimie Alexander) after she disappeared to protect him from the wrath of her brother Roman (Luke Mitchell). As the two shared a tense but passionate reunion, another layer of tattoos was revealed on Jane’s body, ensuring that the third season would be filled with the same puzzle-solving challenges that devoted fans had come to know and love. Simultaneously, audiences caught a glimpse of the current status of the other FBI team members, Edgar Reade (Rob Brown), Tasha Zapata (Audrey Esparza), and Patterson (Ashley Johnson), who had been kidnapped and were being held in a remote location together.
When the first episode of season 3 aired last week, it was clear that Roman was still filled with rage and had every intention of punishing Jane for her betrayal. Although the episode ended with the FBI team together once again in the New York office, with the addition of new team member Rich Dotcom (Ennis Esmer), it’s clear that the bonds that once held the group so closely together have been tested during the two-year time jump and that each person now has secrets they don’t wish to share with the others.
Prior to the release of the season’s second episode, Blast Magazine had the opportunity to sit down with the show’s cast and creator to discuss the upcoming dangers and challenges facing the FBI team.
Blast Magazine: In the season 2 finale, we saw the end of Shepherd and her plot to destroy the FBI. You’ve previously stated that Michelle Hurd (Shepherd) will no longer be on the show in Season 3. Since the first episode of season 3 showed Roman as the villain for the majority of the episode, will he be the “big bad” the FBI team is focusing on in this new season?
Martin Gero (Creator): Yes, it’s Roman. Roman felt pretty jilted that Jane chose the team over him. The why of it is partially a secret but partially punitive. He wants to hurt Jane and it wouldn’t be enough to just kill her. He wants to make her go through it all again and show her that she chose wrong. Ours is a show that really runs on secrets. With the two-year time gap, everyone has spread out and come back together. They all have secrets now from each other, from Roman, and from everybody. The tattoos are not only about Roman’s eventual end goal, which we will get to as the season progresses, but also about exposing truths within the team to each other in a way that’s very emotional.
Blast Magazine: Although Weller found Jane in the season opener and the team is now back together, the general mood seems to be pretty tense. What is the nature of Jane and Weller’s relationship this season and what will be the status of his relationship with the rest of the team?
Sullivan Stapleton (Kurt Weller): We have to mend those bridges. Weller understands that Jane left for his safety but finding her gave him that vulnerable moment where he wondered if she really left to protect him or because she got cold feet. That vulnerable side of Weller was a blessing to me as an actor because I love being able to not just see him be a super-agent chasing criminals, but also to have a personal life. The team starts off apart and gets back together. We start off in a jagged way and it’s a lot of fun. We just don’t know where we are going yet.
Blast Magazine: The character of Jane Doe has undergone an intense transformation since the series premiere. So much has changed in her life and she now is fundamentally a different person than when audiences first met her. How do you think your portrayal of Jane has changed since you first began in the role?
Jaimie Alexander (Jane): I don’t know if my portrayal of Jane has changed but I am now much more confident in the fight scenes because I’ve done it every day for 10 months every year. It’s so engrained in me now that I can just do it. I feel bad for anyone who scares me. The kinds of things that Jane needs to be confident in, I’ve now found to be fluid for me as well.
Blast Magazine: For most of last season, Roman had little recollection of who he was and the role he played in the world. This season, he is the main villain and a very central part of the story. Are you more excited filming this season as you get to unlock all of Roman’s brain power?
Luke Mitchell (Roman): Absolutely. It’s a completely different version of the character from season 2 to season 3. It’s really fun and kind of scary but in a really powerful way. Season 2 Roman had no power. He was a pawn and a foot soldier. In season 3, he’s his own master and he’s got a grand plan. He’s been spending a lot of time gathering secrets. Everyone has secrets and he knows them and that’s powerful. It’s definitely a lot of fun.
Blast Magazine: This season’s mysteries focus on the second set of tattoos now present on Jane’s body. When did you find out about the new layer of tattoos and what was your reaction?
Jaimie Alexander (Jane): My first thought was “what in the double hell is this?” I don’t read ahead so everyone knew but me. I sat down at the table read and got to the end of the script and was so surprised. It was crazy and I wasn’t sure how they were going to do it or if it was going to be a dream. I didn’t really know it was going to be real for season 3 until I got the script for the season premiere back in June. I was pretty shocked because I thought it was a really crazy concept. I wondered how it would be possible to keep it grounded and prevent it from taking on a superhero-type feeling or something no longer believable.
The writers researched a technology that would make something like the second layer of tattoos possible. They did their research but I definitely wondered how much of me was going to glow and how much would be covered up. The second layer is CGI but for last season’s finale, they strung LED lights up my arm for reference, so I was walking around like Rainbow-Brite. I looked like a walking Christmas tree. When I got to see the final cut, I understood that the lights were just for reference and weren’t going to remain in the shots.
Blast Magazine: Last season, we found out more about Roman’s childhood and what led him to become the person he is today. Although he was never a “good guy”, his bond with Jane remained steadfast and his love for her seemed unceasing. When season 2 ended, Jane chose the FBI team and Weller over Roman and it was clear that this was the ultimate betrayal for him. In this season, he’s come up with this master plan to hurt Jane and destroy everything that she holds dear to her. Even though we see him as angry and destroyed, do you think that Roman could ever be redeemed?
Luke Mitchell (Roman): That’s a great question. I think that’s something we will explore more towards the end of the season. I like to think that most people have the ability to be redeemed. He’s going to do some things that would certainly question that but it will be interesting to see what the bond between Jane and Roman will look like moving forward. It’s incredibly complicated. He’s doing some really awful things because he’s hurt but he’s hurt because he loves her. I honestly don’t know. It’s a really trick thing and we will definitely be exploring it.
Blast Magazine: With so many tattoos on Jane’s body, do you have a personal favorite?
Jaimie Alexander (Jane): The bird on the neck is my absolute favorite. I’m glad it is because I wear that thing every day. I have to go home with it, so if I go into the city to do something, I try to put a scarf over it. With it being so hot lately, it gets really sticky and comes off on everything that touches it. A few weeks ago, my scarf fell and there was a guy on the train who told me that the tattoo wasn’t being covered up very well. He then told me loved the show. I was covering it up so nothing got messed up, not to hide, so I felt like an idiot.
Blast Magazine: Zapata and Reade had a very close friendship in the last two seasons. Although they had their ups and downs, their loyalty to each other was strong. At the end of season 2, we saw everyone go their own ways and Zapata join the CIA, while Reade became the head of the NY field office. Now that they are both in the same place again, will they be able to make up and continue their friendship as it existed previously?
Audrey Esparza (Tasha Zapata): Their friendship will definitely continue. Because we had a 2-year time jump, their friendship has evolved and changed in some ways. I think their separation has made them mad at each other and has also made them love each other more. While Zapata is very much driven by her work, for the past few years, Reade has been a huge part of her life.
Blast Magazine: Do you have any amusing stories about filming this season that you can share?
Audrey Esparza (Tasha Zapata): I had never worked with a rain tower before. When you watch rain on film, it’s not normal-sized rain because average rain can’t be caught on film. The rain tower makes giant droplets. Ashley [Johnson] was telling me that it wasn’t as fun as I thought it would be and Rob [Brown] said it was terrible, but I was so excited about it because I hadn’t done it before. We shot in the rain and the temperature dropped. At the beginning, I was telling them that it was kind of fun but by the end of it, we were all silent and shaking and focused.
Ashley Johnson (Patterson): You and Rob were the perfect people to go through that with.
Audrey Esparza (Tasha Zapata): If I needed to go through torture, I’d like to do it with you.
Blast Magazine: This past season allowed Patterson to get out of the office and participate in some intense action sequences. Will we be seeing more of those physical scenes in the upcoming episodes?
Ashley Johnson (Patterson): There was a little bit of that in the first episode and there may be a little bit more later, but for the most part, there isn’t. I think because Patterson went through such a hard time and wanted to leave the FBI at the end of season 2 to start fresh and new, she feels better staying behind a computer while the rest of the team goes off to do their thing.
Audrey Esparza (Tasha Zapata): That’s interesting when you think about it because Patterson went and created an app where you have your own avatar or multiple avatars. You created personas in some ways.
Blast Magazine: Patterson and Zapata are both fascinating characters to watch. They have experienced such highs and lows in the past two seasons, which has clearly shaped who they are in this third season. Do you feel that you have anything in common with them?
Ashley Johnson (Patterson): I don’t think I’m too similar to my character. I think personality-wise, we are pretty different.
Audrey Esparza (Tasha Zapata): There are definitely little pieces of Zapata that I can understand and expand on, but I don’t know if we would be friends.
Ashley Johnson (Patterson): I think Patterson is a little too Type-A for me. [points to my Harry Potter sweater] I think Patterson would be definitely be in Ravenclaw, not that there is anything wrong with Ravenclaw. I’ve taken the Pottermore test twice and both times, I’ve placed in Slytherin, which makes sense to me. I love Patterson as a character and we’ve had so much fun creating her. I think I would have fun with her but she’s a little too straight-laced for me.
Audrey Esparza (Tasha Zapata): I think me and Tasha would get in arguments but we could drink together.
Ashley Johnson (Patterson): I would be friends with Tasha.
Rob Brown (Edgar Reade): I would be friends with Reade if he would have me. He’s too much. He needs to take it easy and have a good time once in a while.