Catherine Bell on How Good Witch Offers Some Much Needed Escapism

Crown Media
Crown Media

For many viewers, television offers a great escape from the world at large. They can turn on the TV and escape for a period of time off to any number of great lands or places. Even in Season 6, many TV fans are still looking to escape to Middleton, Grey House, and hang with the characters that make up the Hallmark Channel original series Good Witch. During Season 6, Cassie (Catherine Bell, Army Wives) and Sam (James Denton) no longer have any children at home, and both are looking to explore new sides to themselves. Along the way, Cassie has also discovered that there is another Merriwick woman nearby with the arrival of Joy Harper (Katherine Barrell, Wynonna Earp).

Bell recently spoke to The TV Junkies about why Good Witch is such a great escape for viewers, as well as how Cassie may be exploring new areas of her life. She also shared what it’s been like having Barrell join the cast this season and why this may be the show’s best season to date. Bell also previews this week’s episode about a chocolate festival being held at Grey House and Kristian Bruun’s (Orphan Black) guest turn as Kenny “the chocolate king.”

 

The TV Junkies: You’re currently in Season 6 of Good Witch and the show continues to be very popular. Why do you think, especially with the current state of the world, that viewers really love spending an hour each week in Middleton?

Catherine Bell: The reason has always been, but is magnified now with everything going in the world, the fact that it’s a nice escape. It’s an hour of this idyllic little town and people who, somehow at the end of the day, work out their problems and get along. Cassie always finds the best in people, and always brings out the best, even when someone’s intentions may not be great. She somehow turns it around and gets them to look at themselves. We’ve been doing this for awhile now, starting the first Good Witch movie 12 years ago, and it was true then, but this has been the most true recently. Fans comments on social media are that they really look forward to that hour as a way to feel good about the world for a moment.

TTVJ: Something major that Cassie has been dealing with this season is that she and Sam have an empty nest. We’ve seen them celebrate their first anniversary, but how do you think they are coping with and handling that?

CB: I love that relationship and am totally a shipper. Every time Sam and Cassie are on screen even my kids are like, ‘Oh they’re so cute!’ [laughs] I think they are so in love and great for each other. They balance each other out in so many ways and it’s nice for them to have some time alone. They spent such a chunk raising their kids, and of course they miss them, but to be able to have these getaways together or explore their hobbies is nice. Who are they now and what do they want to do with their lives? It’s been really nice to explore that this season.

Crown Media
Crown Media

TTVJ: It’s been great to see Cassie take on teaching, something she wasn’t completely sure about at first. Why do you think this was a good move for her and how will she continue to grow into that role?

CB: I love that and Cassie is such a teacher anyways. For her to be in that role is so great and was really fun to explore. It was especially nice to explore her background in art history and the world that she’s traveled. 

TTVJ: A lot of fans have been really excited about the addition of Katherine Barrell’s Joy this season. What was it like having Kat join the cast, and why has it been great for Cassie to have Joy in her life?

CB: Kat’s great! It was great having her on set and she just came right in. Coming into an established show is hard for any actor and I remember it when I was just starting out. I was actually a guest star on JAG, when it was a different show with a different female lead, and it was so intimidating and scary. I’ll never forget the people who made me feel comfortable so I’ll always go out of my way to make people feel comfortable. 

She didn’t really need that. She just came right in and is such a talented actress. She’d always check with me or the director to make sure she was fitting in and giving us what the show needed. She’s just lovely. 

As a character, it’s great having another Merriwick. I love the three witch vibe between Abigail, Joy, and Cassie. We had a lot of fun over the season and it was really great being witchy and seeing our different abilities and how we interact, teach each other, and challenge each other. We don’t always agree on how those powers should be used and that’s also fun. 

Crown Media
Crown Media

TTVJ: One of the great relationships on the show is the one between Cassie and Martha (Catherine Disher). It’s been so nice to see it grow and evolve over the years. What do you think those two women have really found in their friendship with each other? 

CB: I love their friendship and love Cathy Disher as well. She’s so great and one of the few that’s been on since the first movie so we’ve grown together. Catherine Disher always says Martha is misunderstood by most of the other characters, and she finds that Cassie is always so kind to her and gets her. They have a bond and she always comes to Cassie for advice. We’re both equals and powerful women, but Cassie always helps and guides her. She is just so funny and cracks me up, both the actress and the character. I just love her.

TTVJ: Can you preview this week’s episode a bit? You have an exciting guest star in Kristian Bruun. What was it like having him on board?

CB: He’s fantastic and such a great actor. We really had a lot of fun having him on the show. It was a lot of fun too because his character is another that may not have the best of intentions, and Cassie knows that, and rather than telling him it’s not ok, gets him to see it. It’s really beautiful and I love when Cassie does that. It teaches me to do that in my own life. It never really works to tell somebody why they’re wrong. Nobody wants that, but to maybe get the person to see it on their own is so powerful.

We have some great scenes together and had a lot of fun filming that episode because there was a huge snowstorm in Toronto that day. We had to film outside for this big chocolate party. There were chocolate fountains that were flowing and literally freezing over. [laughs] If you look close you’ll see snow on our hair, and we’re acting like there’s no snow, and we’re just hanging outside having a lovely party. We had fun this episode.

TTVJ: Is there anything else you can preview about what’s ahead for Cassie the rest of this season?

CB: It’s so great that it’s on W Network in Canada as well because I have a lot of Canadian fans. It’s lovely to be able to share with them because Canada is like my second home. I’ve spent half of every year there for the last many, many years. We film in Toronto, Hamilton, and Dundas so it’s exciting to share it. 

I’m also really excited about the season because it’s my, along with the producers and cast, favorite season. We really got into our groove with the witchiness, magic, new characters, new romances, and all the love stories. There’s more mystery too and I’m excited to share it!

 

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Good Witch airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on the Hallmark Channel and the W Network.