Is anyone else still drying their eyes over last week’s tear-jerker season opener of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD? After the big Fitz reveal in “Shadows,” there can’t be many fans left willing to advocate for “double agent” Grant Ward and his apparently remorseful ways. Except perhaps Ward portrayer himself, Mr. Brett Dalton.
“Fitz believed in me, he was one of the few guys who still believed in me,” Dalton conceded to The TV Junkies, admitting that doing harm to the last good guy on his side wasn’t the nicest thing to do. “But did I give him a chance at survival? Garrett (Bill Paxton) said put two in him. Point blank. Get rid of him. I couldn’t do it that way so I … I gave them a chance. And they survived.”
Dalton remained tight-lipped behind the motives for his character’s remorse–attempted suicide and all. Between talking about some of his real-life interests (he grew up with a ping pong table in his backyard and took in The Book of Mormon while in Toronto recently), he did admit that he believes Ward’s feelings for Skye (Chloe Bennet) to be real, and that he understands the character, at least.
“People want to believe that people are good,” he muses. “I mean I’m playing the guy so I have a ton of sympathy for where he’s coming from. I’m not judging him at all. If I made those choices I would think that I made the best choice at the time. If I was in juvenile hall and getting beat up all the time and completely neglected by my family and possibly saw my brother drown in a well … So yeah, he had to do some crazy stuff to survive. I hope that audiences have sympathy for him because I think they want to believe that the feelings for Skye are for real. I do too personally…and I think that he’s not all bad.”
The jury is still out on that one, but from the sounds of things we’ll have plenty of opportunities in Season 2 for Ward to make amends for his evil deeds, even if he can’t fix Fitz (Iain de Caestecker) and his brain. As any good comic book/series/movie fan knows, some of the most interesting scenes are the ones in which the good guys need to team up with the bad guys in order to stop a greater evil. Getting the remaining SHIELD agents to work with Ward should be no exception.
“That would be an interesting possibility,” Dalton says. “whether SHIELD likes it or not, Ward is something they need to deal with, the problem that won’t go away. So he’s a wild card. I’d like to consider him still kind of part of the team. But that could just be me. I doubt they feel that way!”
For now, Dalton explains that he’s playing a sort of hybrid character. Before anyone–including him–knew that Ward had ulterior motives with HYDRA, he referred to the guy as Ward. Once he learned about the twist, he started referring to him on set and to producers as Grant. So where does that leave him now?
“Beard Ward!” he jokes, before considering it further. “The question is, ‘Who is Grant Ward without Agent Garrett, without somebody ordering him around?’ He’s created kind of in Garrett’s image and now that Garrett’s not there, he has to really decide who he is and what he wants.”
Well that’s one’s obvious–he wants Skye of course. Why else would Season 1’s biggest playboy say farewell to his lady-charming days?
“Let’s hope not! He had a really good run didn’t he?,” Dalton laughs. “With Lady Siff. And May. And Skye. And … uh … yeah. He was a bit of a ladies’ man, wasn’t he? Hopefully the beard will help in that going forward. That’s the entire reason I grew it.”
Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD continues Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on ABC/CTV.
Will you forgive Ward going forward? Sound off in the comments below, and be sure to check out this preview of Tuesday night’s new episode, “Heavy is the Head:”
Amber Dowling is a bonafide TV Junkie, critic and freelance writer who watches countless shows and lives for dramatic (fictional!) twists. She currently serves as the vice-president of the Television Critics Association and has appeared on numerous TV and radio shows across North America. An advocate for Canadian Television and a lover of the medium in general, Amber founded TheTVJunkies.com as a spot for fellow enthusiasts to connect and collaborate. She previously spent almost eight years as the EIC for TV Guide Canada.