With its finale fast approaching (it airs tomorrow!), we were excited to speak with some of the cast of Robert Kirkman’s Outcast during Comic-Con a few weeks back. We wanted to know what makes the show stand out from other psychological horror shows, and what it was like to create the first season. Make sure to catch up on the entire season of Outcast, and tune in for the season finale tomorrow, August 12th at 10pm on CINEMAX.
Patrick Fugit as Kyle Barnes
There are so many great dark shows on TV today—whether it’s horror or exploring post-apocalyptic worlds. What do you think differentiates Outcast from a show like The Walking Dead or another Kirkman property?
I think Robert has purposefully created a world that feels totally different, even though it’s still within the horror genre. He wants it to stand apart from The Walking Dead. But I’ve also noticed a real evolution in Robert’s character, world creation and storytelling. All of that has been evolving and growing since The Walking Dead began, which was a few years ago now. He has all of that amazing experience adapting and writing that story for television, and he’s using it to tell this new story. I think that we’ve really lucked out, because we get the newest iteration of Robert’s creation.
Do you think the fact that the show is on CINEMAX gives you more creative liberties?
Absolutely! I also think since our show is not very centered around effects, like gore or jump-scares or anything like that, we’re playing in a different area. A lot of the horror in the show is disturbing or situational—it creates a uncomfortableness, which is really what I like about it. We’re able to push boundaries in terms of what the characters actually do, the decisions they make, the moral boundaries they push. That sort of thing. So yes, we definitely get a lot of leeway from CINEMAX.
If someone was about to binge the whole season before the season finale, what kind of viewing experience should they expect?
Oh man, well, it’s upsetting. I enjoy watching David Lynch material—stuff that isn’t outright horrific or scary. The show is very cerebral, very upsetting, and definitely unsettling.
Philip Glenister as Reverend Anderson
Tell us a little about your character.
Well my character is an outcast. His story in one sentence: he sees himself as a soldier of God.
What do you think makes the show so special?
Our show is definitely not your average horror affair. It’s not just a horror-fest. The bottom line is, it’s character-driven. You get to know each and every character even though we have a large group, and it’s very much an ensemble cast.
How would you describe the overall feeling of the show?
Well we really want the audience to get involved and feel like they’re part of the show without trying to scare the crap out of them… but have them enough on edge that they want to come back the next week and invest in our community.
Even though the comic book is unfolding simultaneously, do you still feel like you’ve had the space to play around with your character?
Since this is our first season we’ve spent time becoming these characters and getting to know them. I always feel that when you get a second season, then you can really start investing and exploring a little bit more with your own personality and how it fits in with the character. We’ve received some very nice feedback on the first season, so it gives us a little more confidence to be a bit more bold or take the story where we want to take it.
The great thing about Robert Kirkman, is that he said very early on, “Look, my job is to write comic books. That’s my skill, that’s what I do.” He does it superbly well. “So your job is to make film, that’s your expertise. You know more about that than I do, so just go off and make it.” It’s very heartwarming, because you know a lot of writers get very possessive, if you mess with their scripts. It’s very refreshing to have Robert trust us, and I think that’s a great way to get the best results. When you want somebody to do a job, you want them to get on with it and do that job. It’s all about trust and getting the best people on board.