EUREKA: Glimpse

Last night's Eureka, Glimpse, was my first episode as a non-enraged-by-the-enraginator-device Doctor Parrish. I had completely forgotten about Fargo's commercial for the Astraeus project at the top of the show; when I saw that, the excitement of shooting the entire season came flooding back to me all at once.

We filmed it so long ago, I don't remember much about it, but what I do recall, quite clearly, is how worried I was about finding the right "pitch" for Parrish's arrogance and irritation with everyone around him. He's supposed to be a guy you love to hate, a thorn in Fargo's side, and if he's just a straight out dick, I think we get tired of him really quickly.

The first scene I shot was actually at the beginning of the episode, in Café Diem, when I present the banana slugs to Fargo and Holly.* I was actually performing Parrish for the first time (remember, in All the Rage, he was only "normal" Parrish in two brief scenes before the enragenation enraginated), and I didn't really have a feel for his character beyond the notes I'd made in my script. Luckily for me, our producer Matt Hastings was on set that day, and I asked him to watch the choices I made during rehearsal. Matt assured me that I was portraying Parrish the way the writers and producers intended, and over the course of that day, I settled into him. Watching it last night, I saw a couple of moments I'd like to change, but that's just part of being an actor; I have to watch my performances with a critical eye, or I'll get lazy and stop learning.

Wasn't Felicia magnificent? I remember having so much fun with her and Neil when we shot the stuff in his office with Stan Lee**, but I had no idea that the three of us would grow so close over the next couple of months. I can't wait for Eureka viewers to see how the relationship among us develops in the weeks to come.

I also remember shooting the scene where Colin gets all that slug gel dumped on him. It was at the very end of a very long day, and none of us expected as much slug gel to come pouring out as we saw on TV. Erica and I were off camera for dialog, and I remember laughing so hard, tears were streaming down my face. He kept improvising lines like, "you — you're a bad, bad person" and "I … I thought we were friends," and [mournful sobbing]. By the time that take was over (and we only got one), the entire crew was laughing as hard as Erica and I were.

My favorite scene in this episode, though, is the scene with Carter and Parrish in the police station. Colin and I found this relationship between the two of them where he is patient and understanding, while Parrish thinks he is just a stupid hick who doesn't know a damn thing about anything. That relationship plays out in future episodes, and it's something I just loved discovering.

Did you notice that Parrish set aside his arrogance and irritation and tried to work with Fargo when it was clear that GD was about to get all explodey? If you blink, I think you'll miss it***, but it was an important, if subtle, character modulation for me. Parrish thinks he's the smartest guy in the room (and he's usually right), but even he knows that there's a time to set personal bullshit aside and stop the world from blowing up.

If you watched the show last night, I'd love to hear what you thought about it. I'll also do my best to answer any questions you have about it … and I hope you'll join me on #TeamParrish.

*For those wondering, the "slugs" were actually made out of figs and dates. You never really got to see them up close, but they looked totally gross, like they really were dried slugs. Parrish ate some in one scene that was cut, and they actually tasted pretty good.

**ZOMG STAN LEE.

*** Don't blink, you fools! The Angels have the phonebox!

 

94 thoughts on “EUREKA: Glimpse”

  1. Last night’s episode ROCKED! It was fantastic seeing you, of course, and Felicia Day. And I LOVED the bit with Stan Lee. :D Looking forward to seeing more Dr. Parrish.

  2. Too sad, I’ll have to wait for years to see it…..
    Germany is ages behind those episodes!
    But I’m looking forward to see :)
    Greetz from Good ol’ Germany
    P.S.: If I had had the chance to meet You in Duesseldorf, I’d loved to meet You at the Con… not been part a wiered bunch of crazy people ;)

  3. sadly I missed last night’s episode because I had the time wrong but look forward to finding it later to catch up. until then, should I be on hiatus from #teamparrish? And your blog?

  4. I do indeed love to hate Parris. As a grad student he is so very much like people I deal with on a daily basis, so it’s nice to have a character to just glom all that hate onto.
    You are really great at playing villains, with your Wil Wheaton character on BBT taking the cake. Is it hard for such a nice guy to play villains or is it somewhat cathartic?

  5. I went all 14 year old fangirl when Stan Lee came on the screen which was a fun moment for my thirty self.
    Glimpse was a great episode and I’m looking forward to the evolving storyline between Parrish, Martin and Fargo. You, by the way, never cease to amaze me at how well you can play a bastard in a way that viewers can still relate to and appreciate him.

  6. It was an amazing show all around and I’m definately on #teamparrish haha. I have only seen the last few episodes and a few of the very first episodes, I’m slowly working on getting caught up on all the seasons. It’s definately a more personal experience watching Wil and Felicia on screen, after having meeting them face to face at comicons, other events, reading your blog and tweets and seeing them on the guild. The commentary in the blog like this after the show is also amazing and I love it. Ty and keep up the great work.

  7. You’re doing too good of a job as the dude everyone loves to hate. I just can’t be on #TeamParrish quite yet. There’s a special place in my heart for the Fargo character. But, I really enjoyed the episode and also this “behind the scenes” look. Thanks!

  8. Great episode last night, but regarding #TeamParrish… I know the whole “Bros before… eh, hem… lady-folk” rule, but this is Felicia Day we’re talking about. Sorry Dude.

  9. FWIW, both my wife and I noticed in passing how Parrish dropped his arrogance when things got rough. You did it without beating us over the head with “Look! Character development!”

  10. It was great seeing you back in Eureka! I watched the ComicCon panel yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed the banter with you, Day, and Grayston. I look forward to seeing more of it in future episodes. At times, it did seem that Parrish was a bit overboard, but I can see and appreciate where it’s going. His relationship with Carter could be somewhat reminiscent of Carter/Stark.

  11. I thought you were great last night, Parrish is a character I can see really growing on people. But if anyone stole the show it was Stan “The Man” Lee, that cameo was awesome!

  12. For me, it was the first episode of Eureka I had seen in a while. I thought it was a well-written and well-played out episode. You and Felicia were great additions to this “season” and I look forward to how the storyline plays out. I even wonder if there will be a competition for Holly between your character and Fargo.
    Frankly, I LOVED the Stan Lee cameo. EXCELSIOR! It’s too bad they couldn’t get someone more “Banner” like for his associate in the scene.
    Am I the only one who wished the “immersive holodeck” thing they used for the CSI-esque analysis would malfunction and try to kill everyone so Parrish could suddenly turn into Wesley Crusher?
    No?
    Oh.
    Well, sorry about that …

  13. When Stan Lee came onto the set, our entire cast, and our entire crew — the most professional crew in the world — turned into 12 year-olds. I think that's just a consequence of being around STAN FREAKIN LEE.

  14. Hey Wil!
    Last night was the first time I watched Eureka. Great show, I really enjoyed it. Two things;
    You did a great job as Parrish. As a viewer when you see a actor who you are quite familiar with it is sometimes hard to get past the person you know (or think you do anyway) and see the character. After the initial surprise of seeing you so early after a few minutes I was learning to love / hate Dr. Parrish and not thinking about Wil (or Wesley / Gordie / etc.). Few known actors pull that off IMO, but you did it perfect.
    Second, yes Felicia is freaking a great actor. I have only seen her in The Guild, LoN and DHSOB so seeing her featured in a full length Drama was really neat. How she pulls of insecure and confident at the same time is a testament to her talent.
    Anywho, great stuff! Now I think I need to go DVD shopping to get caught up. lol

  15. I thoroughly enjoyed the episode and your character is fantastic. I can’t wait to see more of him! Team Parrish FTW!!

  16. Edit ran out … so let me add here:
    I agree with a previous poster in how I was able to push aside your previous characters, though I did pick up hints of Fawkes and Evil Wil in Parrish. Not much, mind you, but I feel you may have tapped into those personas a little when you show your arrogance.

  17. Last night was the first time, in a LONG time, that I was able to watch Eureka on the actual night that it was showing. I had to catch up on Netflix or On-Demand before this. It was great!
    I did notice a slight stiffness to your lines in the Café Diem scene with Niel and Felicia, which was a little jarring to me, since I’ve seen you do better (your enragenation in your previous episode was quite good, btw). However, with what you said in your post above, that makes sense to me now. It didn’t dawn on me that it was your first opportunity to really perform Parrish. So, I noticed that “lack of feel” you mentioned, but after that, I could really tell that you settled into the character and were having a lot of fun with it.
    Oh, and yes, I did notice Parrish drop the arrogance when things got serious. Very nice.
    Oh, oh, and… YES! “ZOMG STAN LEE” IS RIGHT! That was so unexpected! My wife and I laughed so much. The Gamma Radiation stuff was great. :D

  18. i may be the only one who is tired of the lee cameos
    interesting to note…it was kirby, not lee, who got a cameo in the original hulk tv series as a police artist…guess at the time, lee thought cameos were beneath him
    good epi
    you were good, the banana slugs were good, and yes, ms day is absolutely adorable…although she seems to be channeling alison hannigan for this role

  19. Eureka has a lot of two-dimensional “nerd of the week” guest stars, but you have done a great job of fleshing Parrish out into a full, three-dimensional character. That was very evident in the scene between Carter and Parrish that you described. In my uneducated opinion, this is your best TV work since your CSI episode, which impressed the hell out of me. Excelsior!

  20. I loved the episode and I’m really into #TeamParrish! Can’t wait to see more, it’s just so awesome to have my two favorite geeks (you and Felicia) on one of my favorite shows!
    Oh and I just have to mention that I love the storyline of the series by the way! I was really sceptical when the whole New-Timeline-Eureka started, but it reveals so many great new characters (like Dr Parrish or Holly) and makes the show even more awesome!
    And by the way, you almost killed me with the ***! I almost choked on my coffee when I saw that!

  21. A most excellent episode! The Parrish/Fargo relationship excites me for one very particular reason: alternate timeline. Parrish has a past with Fargo: which we get to hear a bit about (good ole’ grandpa Fargo paving the way – excellent bitterness by the way). Yet, Fargo has no idea about that past, and Parrish has no idea that Fargo has no idea. I can’t wait to see if there are opportunities for you, as Parrish, to notice there is something “wrong” with Fargo. It may not be a direction in which the show wants to go, but wouldn’t it be interesting if Parrish, not just Zane, starts to realize something is different? I know filming has probably finished for the entire season, so there is no changing it now, but I can hope. :)
    Oh…and nice Whovian reference.

  22. What a great episode, and what a great (and, yes, nuanced) character. Thank you, too, for letting us know that everyone is having as much fun as they appear to be having.

  23. The episode was a lot of fun, can’t wait to see how everything plays out. I didn’t realize Stan Lee would be in last night’s episode. I woke my wife up from laughing when he dropped his Hulk line.
    One question I have, do you find it more or less enjoyable to work on a show you also like to watch? It seems like you wouldn’t be able to enjoy actual story (you were there; you know how things were done and what ends up happening). At the same time, you seem to get a lot of joy remembering the behind the scenes antics that were going on at the time.
    Thanks, and nice work!

  24. I had JUST read your “if you cut me” post, and started watching the episode – and all the scientists started mobbing Fargo and I was thinking how similar it was. It was a very fun episode though. My mom actually texted me while watching “STAN LEE!!! HAHAHAH” (gotta love the mom that grows up reading comic books and can share that joy with you) And who got all the Gamma radiation jokes. Can’t wait to see how the characters develop!

  25. **I FREAKED OUT AT THE STAN LEE SCENE!! I almost broke my boyfriend’s arm. I kind of exploded.
    ***THANK YOU GUYS FOR YOUR DOCTOR WHO REFERENCES! When Zane said something along the lines of, “So…is that a TARDIS house? Ya know, bigger on the inside?” I also flipped out.
    I would like to thank y’all for keeping my nerdery and geekage healthy and thriving!
    xoxox

  26. I loved last nights episode and can’t wait for the rest of the season. Thanks to you and Felicia and got my wife to watch and now she wants to to start at the beginning and get caught up. Keep up the good work.

  27. Last night’s show was great. Good to see you back in Eureka. It’s always enjoyable seeing characters introduced and then given the chance to grow and evolve. Often times, an ancillary character can add quite a lot of richness to a show and Eureka seems to take advantage of this from time to time. So far, it looks like Holly and Parrish are both getting the screen-time to flesh themselves out and add more fun dynamics to the show. Looking forward to seeing more!

  28. Wil, Great episode. I think you nailed the attitude, but I disagree that he’s a character that we’ll love to hate, at least as to the hate part. Right, he’s an arrogant SOB, but the way you played him (and the way the other characters interacted with him), its clear that he’s justified. There’s just enough humanity there.
    Re favorite scene, I agree, the police station with Carter.
    Re Felicia’s character, I hate to add a slight negative into an otherwise wonderful discussion, but please tell me that her character evolves over the next few episodes. My wife and I both like the character, but thought it was a bit too ditzy at times. Knowing the excellent writing they have for the show, I’m guessing yes, but it’ll make the anticipation of the next episode more bearable knowing that. This wouldn’t count as a spoiler, would it??

  29. Daaaamn you! I had so many orders that I was supposed to finish and fullfill last night. I’m sitting at my worktable, drowning in 3000 yards of tulle and cotton, thinking “oh, I’ll sew and watch Eureka and the time will fly by”…noooooo…I got exactly 15 minutes of sewing done. All of which were completed during the commercial breaks.
    #TeamParrish is going to seriously put a damper on my productivity (and make me have to edit my shop policies…clearly, 24hr turn around won’t happen on Monday nights).

  30. Great episode, I loved that they were playing the Incredible Hulk theme under Stan Lee’s scene!
    You are so right, Colin’s quite funny he did the sketch show and the Impov show earlier this year at Acme and killed.

  31. I was so sad that Eureka was moved to Mondays because that is the night I have class. Luckily last night was the beginning of a month-long break for me so I got to watch the episode as it aired! You were great on the show and I’m so excited about your character having a larger role on the show. I was so excited to see Stan Lee as well. You should see me try to explain all the cool people on Eureka last night to people who have no idea. Btw, my mom has always been a huge fan of Star Trek: TNG and when I told her that you are Wesley Crusher she replied, “If he shaved the beard he’d still have a cute baby face.”

  32. I recently finished Season 4, so how far along is the new season? I would love to be able to watch it and ask questions after it’s aired, but I want to watch it in succession. Am I screwed? I wonder if I can watch old episodes on SyFy… IF the website will let me. WORST SITE EVER.

  33. It’s pretty clear that Parrish’s motivation is that he knows his work is vitally important to GD’s goals, and frankly, the continued existence of humanity. He’s trying to change the world and help others, but they don’t appreciate any of the hard work or sacrifices he made for them. You pulled that off perfectly.
    Also, weird seeing a STAN LEE! cameo where he’s not sitting at a bar.

  34. The episode was excellent, and there was so much neat stuff in it that it bears re-watching (thank you, Tivo.) Do I remember correctly hearing Fargo say that Parrish was obviously not the sort of person who should be in outer-space? Because I remember thinking of that as a delightfully ironic reference to Wesley Crusher.
    Nice Stan Lee cameo, great little in-jokes during his bit. Rewatched it six times! (Thank you, Tivo, again!)
    I think the best thing for Doc Marten would be, at the end of the season, Parrish & Fargo demand she choose between them and she looks startled for a moment and expresses surprise because she hadn’t noticed she’d somehow become a prize they were fighting over. Then she could pat them both on the cheek and skip off with her significant other, played in a cameo by Nathan Fillion, who’d piloted his own corporate jet to Eureka to pick her up. A GIRL CAN DREAM!

  35. That moment you refer to, when Parish thinks about considering the possibility that maybe Fargo is a useful and productive human being at least for this moment in order to avert disaster. I spotted it and enjoyed it enough to bring it up with my wife after the episode.
    Also, the manner in which you picked up your slug tray after the interview was really great. Extremely petty without being childish. Great work.

  36. I am way late to the Eureka party, but last night was a good show. But it felt a little like Drs. Fargo and Marten and Parrish were all trying just a bit too hard. I don’t know…maybe it’s just me not really knowing the characters, but somethings just felt forced. I enjoyed the episode and will keep watching, and I hope I settle in to the world as the characters become more familiar to me.
    Thanks,
    Mike

  37. I actually got into Eureka because of you and I’m really glad I did. It’s a solid show and served as a gateway for me into other shows on the network formerly known as Sci-Fi (Warehouse 13, Sanctuary and the too-soon cancelled SGU).
    I went to hulu today, excited to watch your episode, only to find that I have to wait until the entire season is done to watch it. What a bummer. I know it’s not your fault so there’s really no point in bitching to you about it (but here I am….uh…). I won’t download it illegally, but I’m also not likely to buy it so I guess I’m waiting awhile. :( Boo on hulu.

  38. Amazing episode. You and Felicia are fabulous additions to an already wonderful cast. Having Stan Lee there was just icing on an already delicious cake. Yum.

  39. It's more enjoyable, but it also presents the unique challenge of staying focused and remembering who my character is. I have so much fun on Eureka, and I like Neil so much, it's *very* easy to lose focus for just a second and allow that genuine affection to leak through, and contaminate Doctor Parrish. When that happens, we have to do another take, and nobody wants that.

  40. We backed up the DVR to make sure that we really were hearing the Hulk theme. Bear is a freaking GENIUS for doing that.

  41. Eureka is always on Hulu and SyFy.com a few days after it airs. Everything leading up to 4.5 is on Netflix and iTunes, too.

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