Satires are generally not known for being grounded and, when utilized to critique the often farfetched superhero genre, are oftentimes known for going way over the top. With The Tick being a satirical take on the average superhero and having to compete in a world overridden by superhero content, one of the biggest concerns has been how to make The Tick standout in the current superhero climate while also making it relatable to the general audience.
Screen Rant got a chance to ask the cast and producer Barry Josephson of Amazon’s The Tick how they focused on keeping the superhero satire series grounded.
I know this is a superhero satire show, but it is a very grounded Dot than we’ve seen from previous incarnations. How was it playing alongside Arthur because that seems like it would be so much fun to do?
Valorie Curry: I have a wonderful time and Griffin and I have had an incredibly easy chemistry and relationship from day one, which is a real gift. But it helps that you have this multi-tonal quality that I think makes it really unique where it can shift on a dime from incredibly absurd and otherworldly to very grounded and very realistic, even like dramatic moments. And it has to turn on a dime. And I think Griffin as Arthur is really the linchpin of that, so he does a beautiful job and he definitely helps me in terms of connecting Dot into those scenes where the tone is constantly shifting.
I think right now with the big superhero climate being the way that it is, I think that having a superhero satire in this era is brilliant. So how does it stay grounded though from other iterations of The Tick that have come before it?
Brendan Hines: Yeah. That’s a good question. There are so many people on the show who aren’t superheroes or are resisting the call of heroic acts that that is incredible grounding for us, I think for the audience, because that’s probably the experience that they would have if somebody knocks on their door one day and shows up and says, “Let’s go jump off that building.” Most of us would probably say, “No, thank you. I’m reading e-mail.” But all of those people are sort of the core of the show. Superion, my character, this enormously famous superhero that has been around for 100 years and comes from another planet, he is not the entry point for the audience. The entry point for the audience is Arthur and Dot and Kahlil, who plays the guy who works at the convenience store, and even Ms. Lint, the villain. She is incredibly human and humanized by the show. That to me is all very grounding.
Talk to me a little bit about Overkill and how does that character stay grounded in this darker superhero satire?
Scott Speiser: Yeah. So Overkill is, what I really enjoy about Overkill is he’s impatient. He’s angry. He’s violent. He doesn’t have much tolerance for The Tick and his clueless and buffoonish ways. He takes no prisoners and what I like about it is he is able to express his rage in almost everything he does and everything that he says and, of course, it causes major conflict. So it’s fun to like, you know, I have things that make me angry in life, little pet peeves or whatever and it’s fun to use this character as this way to let that out. Everything he says, he’s so vengeful and so angry.
How do you keep a superhero satire like this grounded?
Barry Josephson: You keep it grounded through Arthur’s character. Arthur, at the beginning of the season, you find out has a real dilemma. Something that he hasn’t been able to shake since he was a kid - the loss of his dad and more. He grows and we relate to him because of that pain he is feeling. I think anybody who would watch this show would want to see this character have the benefit from growing and being whole again. And it’s The Tick who comes to join him, unreliable, crazy, super strong, who is the one who is going to help him with that.
The Tick premieres on Amazon August 25, 2017.