None of us are just purely benevolent or malevolent. I mean, it’s not possible in human nature, unless you’re Ghandi. The more flaw you bring to a character or the more balance you give your character with flaw, the closer that character moves towards everyman, you know. And if that character is an everyman, then we can all sit back and relate to them like we can’t relate to a superhero.
– Alex O’Loughlin, TVaddict, 4 August 2010
Spoiler alert! Please remember if you haven’t seen all Alex’s work, there might be some spoilers here.
Part 1 – Finding himself on the wrong side of the law.
Maybe it’s because I know Simon so well, I understood exactly what he meant with the character, and I hope that I conveyed it through my performance, and if I haven’t, I apologize in advance, but I understood Vincent’s anguish, and I understood the desire for salvation, and I think before the end, he rests assured of himself. He’s not all bad.
— Alex O’Loughlin, MyTakeOnTV, 29 April 2009
Criminal Minds made me wonder if it is the specific roles he chooses to play or if it his acting abilities, but it always seems like Alex make you feel sorry for the criminal he plays at the end. He succeeds in bringing you the humanity of someone like Vincent, who is the worst kind of murderer.
In Whiteout we will never know if Russell has been a criminal his whole life or if he just turned bad because of opportunity, when the carrot of extreme wealth was too big and the temptation to strong to get rich quickly. It did seem easy for him to kill, maybe it got easier after the first one or maybe he had done it before?
In The Invisible he again creates this feeling of a character whose life has been tough on him and even his girlfriend does not stay loyal to him (not that he was very loyal to her) …… Was he really a bad person or did life just deal him a bad hand? As Marcus he creates this sympathy you feel for him while the detective is questioning him. (well that and he looks so amazing during this scene)
Feed – could there be any worst kind of criminal. Somebody that exploits the vulnerability of helpless woman addicted to food and in the end addicted to his affection (Well who can blame them, if your reward for eating yourself to death, is to see him in all his naked glory?)
But still in the end you want to cheer for Michael, like Deirdre ……..
Has there ever been a more adorable criminal in the history, than Will Bryant in Mary Bryant? I never know if they play down the criminal element of the people who were convicted and send to Australia to create sympathy for them, or if they where just a bunch of unfortunate souls that where living in a time that mother England wanted to start a new colony and found reasons to do so.
I am sorry to say, I haven’t had the privilege yet to see BlackJack: Sweet Science. From what I read about it and the screen caps I have seen, it looks like, Luke was a boy who turned bad because of his past and the general ineptness of the police. And again the emotions from Alex that is displayed in what I have seen, show that he was doing a good job with it.
In Oyster Farmer Alex plays Jack Flange, the most harmless criminal. He turns to crime out of a pure heart. Did old man Mumbles save his “soul” or would his good nature have made him save himself at the end?
Part 2 – Is he playing Good Cop or Bad Cop?
I’ve been doing a lot of reading and spending a lot of time with the LAPD guys. I’ve been doing that and going out shooting lots of guns and sort of rolling with these cops and just talking to them and just doing as much research stuff as I can.
— Alex O’Loughlin, IGN.com, June 2006
The Shield is the first television role for Alex in the USA. As Kevin, he was a little bit like a fish out of water with his new colleagues. In the end he just could not be bad like them……
At the moment we are seeing Alex in his biggest role thus far. Hawaii Five-0 is seen as an all-around success and they just started filming Season 3.
As a law man Steve is kind off unconventional because he did not do specific police training and he never worked within a department where he was overseen by a Head of Police.
The bottom line is Steve McGarrett doesn’t care what anyone thinks. But there’s something lovable about that, it doesn’t come from ego or self-importance, he has a mission and he’s following that through.
— Alex O’Loughlin, The Sun-Herald, 30 January 2011
In Season 1 they were given free rein to do whatever they wanted and used any method that came to mind as long as they got the job done…..
In Moonlight Alex plays a PI that assists the police to solve crimes that they have difficulty with. In the original pilot Mick talks about him being up many a dark alley and that he knows things that the ordinary police do not have access to……..
Once in a while he would also stray to the side of vigilante ….. and it is debatable if he is really still on the right side of the law by doing that?
I really enjoyed Alex as Deputy Eric Fraser in Man-Thing. He was playing a character so far removed from himself. In what little screen time he had, he really gave his young man life and you feel sympathy for his life of being a law man but having to deal with the gruesome results of a monsters work.
So let’s recap. Alex has been on the wrong side of the law playing an oyster farming market robber, a smuggling sailor, a serial killer that feeds women to death, a serial killer that does bad things like daddy did, a car thief and a diamond thief murderer. On the right side of the law he has been an ignorant small town deputy, an out of depth detective, a vigilante vampire PI and a Navy SEAL cop.
All of them memorable performances … the cops were never all good and the murders and thieves never all bad. He managed to find the humanity in all of them and created great empathy in mostly all of them. What more can a storyteller want?
Goodbye Sweetie ….. till next time