Published: Friday, 01 May 2015 18:04 | Written by SciFi Vision
Recently the fifth and final season of Syfy’s popular series premiered. Star Zoie Palmer, who plays human Dr. Lauren Lewis, recently talked to Jamie Ruby of SciFi Vision in an exclusive interview about her time working on the series and what’s next for her.
From the beginning of the series, there has been the main love triangle between Bo (Anna Silk) and Dyson (Kris Holden-Ried) and Bo and Lauren. The actress, however, was tightlipped about what is coming between Lauren and the succubus this season. "I can almost say absolutely nothing, other than it's going to be as tumultuous as always. It's going to be as up and down and left and right and crazy as always."
Even though both characters are in love with Bo, Lauren and Dyson through the seasons have formed somewhat of a friendship with each other. "Dyson and Lauren have always had a really complicated relationship, because their biggest thing in common, of course, is Bo, and the love for her and the protection of her, and they both take that so fiercely seriously. And I think that they respect each other because of that, and I think they always have.
"I mean, I think at the very beginning they kind of weren't sure if they could trust each other, but over the years, in some ways, they've come to trust each other.
"And you know, it's that whole thing that I think everybody can kind of connect to. You can imagine at the very least what it might be like to love the same person and, of course, understand why, because I think Dyson understands what Lauren sees in Bo, as much as Lauren understands what Dyson sees in Bo.
"But at the end of the day, I think it's a selfless love in a lot of ways that they both have for her, because she kind of comes first. Certainly for Dyson; he's shown that a lot, I think, over the seasons, that the priority is her and her happiness, her peace, and her being okay. That he's willing to kind of let go and walk away, and go so far as to give up his love for her in one season. So I think they both have sacrificed a lot for her, and I think there's a mutual respect, and I think that just continues to grow.
"And, you know, with them it's always a bit of a step forward a step back, because it goes without saying, that it's also difficult to watch someone you love with somebody else. And I think they always struggle with that. I think that it's always kind of a presence there, that Bo can never be one person, really, and that's one of those things I think for both of them that occasionally is difficult to deal with."
In tonight's episode, Dyson spars with Lauren to help train her to defend herself. Palmer enjoyed filming the scene, even if it was a bit scary for her. "It was crazy. I mean, I don't box, so I can't fight, honestly. I came by being totally uncomfortable, pretty honestly, but it was lots of fun. I mean, Kris and I have known each other for years now, so any time we do anything together, it's a ton of fun. Like we really enjoy each other, and that scene was no different.
"But like there's some real fear, I think, that you see on the screen; I think it's pretty real. I was totally hoping to God I didn't get hit in the face. (laughs) But Kris is a complete professional, and of course it was choreographed, and to the last moment, so there was no real concern of being hurt, but that didn't change the fact that I was nervous the whole time. But it was good; it was lots of fun."
The actress didn't receive training for that scene, because Lauren wasn't supposed to be skilled. "I didn't do any training; not for that. I have for other scenes that I've shot either for Lost Girl or other things, but no not for that scene. The whole point is that Lauren is out of her element, you know, like Lauren lives in her head and she solves problems by dealing with them scientifically, so the idea of getting her fists in the air and flinging them around is just so foreign to her that no there was no training needed for that."
She has, however, had training for other scenes in other series and has enjoyed the physicality. "I've done different things, on Nikita, for example, and on the show I'm doing now, Dark Matter. There's some physicality to the character at times, and I enjoy anything that throws me bit of a curve ball, and those kinds of scenes are demanding and challenging. They're like a dance; they're choreographed, and you have to memorize the steps, and it's important that you don't miss one, because you get a fist in the face if you do, if you miss a block that you've choreographed. But, you know, everybody's highly, highly trained, and they have stunt doubles to do some of the really serious stuff, but it's great.
"Anytime you can do anything like that, that's what's so fantastic about being an actor, you have the opportunity to throw yourself into all these situations that you typically wouldn't. And I love that."
Besides Bo and Dyson, Lauren has had some interesting scenes this season again with The Morrigan, Evony (Emanuelle Vaugier). "Evony and Lauren have always had such a sort of funny relationship, where there's obviously a chemistry between them on some level, and they're so wildly different, and in some weird way, it kind of works.
"And Emmanuelle plays her so brilliantly, that being in scenes with her is such a treat, because she's always really prepared and always really ready to play, and you really kind of you never know kind of what you're going to get when you're in a scene with her, and it's really exciting as an actress to get that.
"And they do explore that for sure in this last season a little bit. I think it was a little bit of a surprise when we did a scene together, and people were like, "that's kind of interesting," and not just the sexuality that they've kind of played with a little bit, but just Lauren and The Morrigan kind of have kind of a fun chemistry that was a little bit unexpected."
Another actress that Palmer got to work with this season is Rachel Skarsten, who plays Tamsin, a Valkyrie. She enjoyed working with her. "It was great. That's the thing about Lost Girl; there's not one person on the show who isn't sort of really unique and really interesting, and a really like off the beaten track kind of actor. Rachel is phenomenally talented and really gives 1000% to the scenes that we're in. It's been really great, because our dynamic in the beginning was sort of a bit difficult. You know, [the characters] rubbed each other the wrong way. And I think over this season, there's some more stuff that kind of gets figured out between the two of them a little bit. Like they see each other slightly differently than they have in the past."
The actress also talked about some of the mythology and Fae that she's enjoyed the most throughout the series. "I love Vex (Paul Amos). Everyone sort of says that, but I do love that character and his kind of craziness.
“But I don't know, I mean, it's sort of a strange thing to say, but I never get too wrapped up in all of the sort of mythology of it all. You know, as an actor, I stick with the relationships and the connections and the story of how to kind of, you know, build on that sort of stuff.
"But there were so many crazy episodes with all sorts of crazy mythology, and it was all really cool.
"I loved the episode with the pigs, the one with Kenzi (Ksenia Solo), and that was a really cool episode, and we had a ton of fun. Ksenia and I, you know, it didn't always get to just be the two of us in scenes, so once in a while we [got to be], and it was tons of fun, and that was one of them, where she kind of went crazy and did her kick-butt scene."
Palmer has a lot of dialog with technical jargon on the series, but she doesn't remember most of it after the fact, unless it was from an important scene. "I only remember the ones that kind of stand out. Like there're a couple of things I had to say over the years that I remember. You memorize them every day, and then you've got to let them go in order to learn the next stuff. So for the most part, no, but every year there was something I would say that was either something really fun or something that kind of made a real connection with the audience for whatever reason, and they say it a lot, so I'm reminded of it. You know, the first few lines that I said to Bo when we very first met I know, because they've come up so much. But overall, no."
The actress has a hard time picking a favorite line out of them all. "I don't have a favorite quote. I mean, there were so many, but like certainly the first few scenes with Anna, when we were just getting to know each other, and Lauren and Bo were just starting to get to know each other, those scenes are very vivid, because they were so heightened for all of us. We were starting a new show, and it was a new journey, and it was really exciting. So I have a clear memory of those scenes."
Palmer also talked about how the evolution of her character throughout the seasons, as well as the popularity of the series, surprised her. "When you start a show and you start playing a character, you have such a small window into them, and then as you kind of go on, you get to know them more and more and more. And I guess that I was surprised by her whole journey, from episode one, where she was with the Fae, where she was with Bo, and where she was with her own self, to where she kind of got to.
"And then for me, I just didn't know what Lost Girl would kind of become, and I didn't know the impact it would have. You have no idea when you do a show if it's going to resonate with people or not. And so I could never have prepared for the kind of reaction, the response, we got from fans. And that's been a huge gift, because, you know, I think it's safe to say we feel the same way as the fans, and that it meant as much to us as it has to a lot of people out there. And I could never have known that when we started."
Playing Lauren for five years has changed the actress in all kinds of ways. "Being on a show for five years, I've never done a show for that long before. I've been on several different series over the years, but I've never done one for five straight years. So, I mean, playing one character for five years, you really have to find ways to kind of bring new parts of yourself to the character and to kind of keep that moving forward and keep the character interesting.
"And then just being with the same people for five years. It's an extraordinary experience. Doing any one thing for that length of time couldn't possibly not change you to some degree. We all grew as people and as actors over the time."
Going into the final season, Palmer didn't have any particular wishes for her character, and left it to the showrunner and writers. "I feel really fulfilled in terms of what they did with Lauren, and I didn't have an idea of how I wanted them to play the last season necessarily, because they've done I think a really great job over the years of crafting these characters, and I kind of felt pretty confident that they would continue that tradition. You know, Michael Grassi of course was the showrunner for this last season, and he is a brilliant, brilliant writer, really imaginative, really creative, and, you know, sort of pushes boundaries, and I felt pretty confident to leave it in his very capable hands that he would do justice for all of these characters, and I think he did just that. So I was more excited to see what was going to happen, than [coming up] with my own ideas. But that was just for me."
As it is the last season, the actors were given mementos from the set. The actress took only Lauren's necklace. "I'm not a things kind of person, but I wanted something of hers, just because it was such an integral part of my life. So the necklace was kind of perfect for that, but no I didn't end up with anything else, because everything is in my mind. Everything about that show is in memories for me, and I don't necessarily need something from the set. But that necklace, it was such a big part of the birth of Lauren Lewis. That necklace, the introduction to her and what she was about, and how she was associated with the Fae and all of that, was kind of integral to that character. So it was just a small, little thing, but it was a big part of her, and I think that's why I gravitated towards it."
Palmer found filming the final episode to be a challenge. "[The challenge was] ending it. It was like any other season: we were in the trenches, and you're there every day, and you're there for hours on end, and the most difficult thing for sure, without a doubt, was the last day of filming. The show was, you know, epic for everybody, and there was not a single person there from the cast or crew, who had a dry eye that day. And, you know, even talking about it now, it was a really big deal for everybody, the show. It was a really special show. I'm not sure what it was, but it was really lightning in a bottle. I don't know what it was about it that was so particularly beautiful, but it was.
"And so outside of getting up at four a.m., and those kinds of things that are always challenging for an actor, it was the final scene. I remember it vividly, where we said we knew this was the last scene we were going to shoot ever. And we were trying to make sure that the scene didn't have this crazy heaviness to it, because they don't necessarily always shoot in order. We actually did that day, which was pretty cool. I think we did shoot the last scene of the show last, which was nice of them to consider to do that. But anyway that for sure was the hardest part, realizing that it was finally over."
Lost Girl may be coming to an end, but Palmer isn't leaving Syfy. She stars in the upcoming series Dark Matter, where she plays an android."The android is exactly that, an android. And they discover her on the ship the same way they kind of discover each other. And nobody at the beginning trusts anybody, because they wake up with no memory; they wake up with no idea what they're doing there, who they are, who each other is, any idea of anything, and then they encounter all these people. So at the very beginning it starts off with everyone very on guard, and that is applied across the board. All of them and the android are kind of very unsure of each other."
The actress doesn't know if there will be a blooper reel for Lost Girl, or even Dark Matter, but hopes so. "I don't know; I have no idea. I hope so; I love them. I could watch blooper reels all day long, so I hope so...I know I did one or two on the end of DVDs. I'm not sure if it happens every season or not. We have more than enough material to have one, I know that."
With such a great divide among the way fans want Lost Girl to end, obviously not everyone will be happy, but Palmer really thinks the writers did a great job with the way they handled the ending. "I think they handled it really well, and I think it was really thoughtfully considered. Nothing was done lightly; everyone knows that there's a big divide in how the audience wants it to kind of end. Everyone's well aware that there's a divide, that some people want this and some people want that, and they really considered it carefully, how to do it that would honor the story and the characters and Bo's journey throughout the five years, and I think that they've done a really great job.
"There was never going to be a way to end it where everyone went, "Oh, perfect!" Like that was never going to be able to happen. There will be people of course that go, "Hmm, I wish they hadn't done that." But, you know, that's what happens when you make big choices, and one of the things I like so much about Lost Girl is that they aren't shy to make big choices, and they don't always ride the line to make everybody happy. And I appreciate that, you know, decisions get made, because it really makes the show what it has been over the years, which is why people get so invested, so passionate, and so either happy or upset about a particular episode. And I love that about the show, that it doesn't sort of sit in [a] gray area all the time. I personally think they did a very good job."