Curtis Armstrong has played the world’s angriest man and one of its most popular nerds; now he’s taken things to a whole other level as the disgruntled angel Metatron on The CW’s Supernatural.
BFTV checked back in with Curtis last week to ask him about playing the hit show’s current Big Bad and the fantastic year that he’s had.
Season 9 of Supernatural has been all about the aftermath of the angels falling from Heaven, so basically everything over the entire year can be blamed on Metatron. What was it like for Curtis to discover just how much he was responsible for? “It’s certainly a great storyline and I was really surprised to see where everything was going,” he said. “I was hired to basically do one episode. They said it might recur, but they were very cautious about letting me know anything.”
“I’d seen the show, but I wasn’t a regular watcher, so the whole mythology, I was so far behind on what everybody was doing,” he continued. “For me, after the first episode, when they said they were going to have me back, and as it started to evolve, and I began to realize just how horrible I was, [it] was really exciting.
“As an actor, these are not roles I get to play much,” he told us. “And especially as well written as this one is. Being an evil character who is witty and articulate and sinister sort of all at the same time is a really rich feast to give an actor.”
And while he couldn’t offer any season-ending secrets, he did tease that “Certainly the next two episodes are full of some very interesting events.” He continued, “It’s safe to say that people won’t wind up loving me more than they do.”
Stepping into the part of Metatron isn’t the first time Curtis has played an angry character; after all, that was the whole premise behind Dan Vs. but that’s about all the two roles have in common. “I think about Dan as sort of being like me a little. But I don’t think of myself as being anything like Metatron,” he commented. “He has issues which are unresolved, and unfortunately he’s sort of taking out his issues on everybody.
“Whereas Dan was sort of limited in the damage he could do, Metatron is capable of sort of destroying the world if he chose to. You’re dealing with an extraordinary power. And when that extraordinary power has that much bitterness or anger or something, no matter how well it’s covered up, he’s not a very nice man. It’s a fascinating role.”
Supernatural is known for its vocal fan base, so we asked Curtis what kind of reaction he’s gotten from the audience after spending multiple episodes wreaking havoc on their show. “I think they’re all very nice, because I’ve communicated with them a bit on Twitter, and I think they understand that I’m not responsible for what my character does,” he told us. “They’re enjoying it. They like my performance. They don’t like the character. They seem to like me and hate the character with that passion that only Supernatural fans can muster.”
“I’ve had that experience before,” he added. “I was doing a run on The Closer with Kyra Sedgwick…and I was basically destroying her career and driving her off of the show. People would stop me on the street and say ‘You leave her alone!’ They would point and yell at me.”
“And that’s begun to happen with Metatron as well. Especially last season, when Kevin bought the farm,” he continued. “Everybody just got all upset…They’re getting so much visceral joy out of the idea of Metatron dying, because they hate him so much for everything he’s done so far. It’s fun, but they understand that it’s an actor, not the real Scribe of God or anything.”
If the fans are already plotting his exit from the show, and given that obviously villains on TV don’t last forever, has Curtis given any thought to how his story arc might come to an end? “I actually never think about how I would go out,” he admitted. “I think whatever they wind up doing with him, I’m sure the punishment will fit the crime. Whatever it is they were to decide to do with him. I just hope that they don’t do it too soon because I’d like to keep playing.”
Having such a wonderful role to showcase his awesomeness is just one of the many great things that has happened for Curtis (and by extension, for us) this year. His reality series King of the Nerds had a fantastic second season, and casting has already begun for a third cycle, although TBS has not officially renewed the show just yet.
“We’re expecting the official pickup within days, but we’ve already started casting for it ahead of the pickup,’ he told us. “It looks very much like we may be continuing, but we’re still waiting for the official pickup. But the casting process has been astonishing. After the first season, we had quite a lot of interest for people to apply for the second season. After the second season, it was a deluge. The casting site crashed because it was so inundated with applications for the show.”
It’s also the 30th anniversary of perhaps his most famous work, the comedy Revenge of the Nerds, which is being celebrated with a new home video release. “They are doing a release of Revenge of the Nerds on the 30th anniversary this year,” said Curtis, “on Blu-Ray for the first time and on DVD for the first time in a long time. It’s really a beautiful, beautiful set.” If you haven’t picked your copy up already, you can get it now by clicking here.
And that’s on top of his guest appearance on New Girl and his extensive voice work on shows like American Dad!, where he plays Steve Smith’s friend Snot. He may be one of the hardest working folks in show business, but at least as we get into finale time, he’s finally getting a chance to clear his calendar. “Everything’s off now. New Girl‘s finished for the season and Supernatural‘s finished for the season, American Dad!, that’s done for the season,” he said. “I am doing a voice in a new Disney feature called Planes: Fire and Rescue, which opens this summer, and my work on that is done too. So right now, I am just relaxing.”
“It was a really, really exciting year,” he reflected. “With all of those shows happening at the same time, this has not happened to me in many years, where I’ve been working on more than one TV show at the same time. It’s remarkable.” Remarkable, but maybe not surprising, given that Curtis Armstrong is one of those truly talented folks who deserves a lot more love from the industry. Just don’t make his characters angry.
There are two more episodes of Supernatural left this season; the series airs at 9 PM ET/PT on The CW. For more on Curtis, be sure you’re following him on Twitter (@curtisisbooger). You can also read our previous interview with him about King of the Nerds and Dan Vs.
Photo Credit: The CW