Adrian Pasdar has given voice to animated Marvel heroes like Hawkeye and Iron Man before on Marvel's Avengers Assemble and The Ultimate Spider-Man, but now he's going to see what its like on the other side of the coin as the actor is set to join the cast of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. where he will play General Glenn Talbot, a character he describes as a "sanctimonious jerk."
Pasdar, who previously played Nathan Petrelli on Heroes, is the latest notable guest star to appear on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., following Bill Paxton's extended stint as John Garrett and Jaimie Alexander's appearance as Lady Sif last night, but while we don't know what impact Talbot will have on the show and on Coulson's team, it's clear that Pasdar is committed to getting the part down.
For that, we can thank Pasdar's son, a serious sounding comic book fan who led the charge to get his father over to Midtown Comics in Manhattan to bone up on Talbot - an ally of General "Thunderbolt" Ross' and a rival of the Hulk's - once he heard that the role was his; research that the actor deemed necessary due to his view of the source material's importance in shaping his portrayal.
Here is Pasdar's comment, on that subject:
"I didn’t want to base it on the excellent work that had come before, in “Marvel’s The Avengers” and things like that. I just wanted to dig deep into the comics where it came from. And that’s what I got to do, through the help of the good folks of Midtown Comics in New York City, I was able to bring this guy to life through a series of pictures and just the graphic imagery, the novels and the cartoons that I was able to access through their help. Really, in the end, that’s what it’s based on. As much as you’re playing a [comic book] guy. I learned this through Iron Man, it really doesn’t matter what I think about who he is because everybody has such a huge idea about what they think the guy is. You have to meet their expectations rather than define it by your own, and it’s not pandering at all. It’s just a little more difficult way of bringing something to life. You can’t just rely on your instincts and your imagination, you have to match up with what the expectations are from the people who are hiring you and watching you."
As for how long Talbot will stick around for, right now, we just don't know, but when asked if fans can "expect to see much more of him down the line?", Pasdar answered in the affirmative.
"Oh yeah. I would imagine. As willing as I am to jump when Jeph (Loeb) calls, there had to be a little bit more in it than just an episode for me. So I can’t say much more but the mustache is in a locker and it’s being taken out and prepped as we speak for next week. Every show needs a jerk, [and] I guess I’m that guy. I make everybody else look so nice."
Though the question isn't posed in the interview, one has to wonder if we might see Talbot (who was played by Josh Lucas in Ang Lee's Hulk film) pop up in another Marvel project as well, particularly one that could allow him to face off against the Hulk (unless a Mark Ruffalo cameo on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is on the table, of course).
Talbot's interaction with S.H.I.E.L.D. isn't out of left field, but his history with the big green guy and Bruce Banner is enormous (no pun) by comparison, so it just seems natural to imagine Pasdar facing off against Ruffalo (who might be less of a gut-punch to the AoS budget) at some point, even if there is zero evidence to support such a thing beside that comic book backstory that Pasdar is now thoroughly up on.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. airs Tuesdays on ABC @8PM