SUPERNATURAL’s Mark Sheppard speaks out about geekdom

mark sheppard


The character Crowley has been a fan favorite since his very first appearance in season 5. And the actor who plays him, Mark Sheppard, is no sci-fi newbie. He’s had popular roles on everything from “Doctor Who” to “Battlestar Galactica,” and he has a lot to say about the genre.

Supernatural’s storyline has been “so attractive. It’s the fact that ‘fantasy’ stories or genre stories themselves are always so much bigger and always so much richer to play than everyday procedural stuff. Some of the villains and the foreign nationals I’ve played in regular TV series have been interesting and fun to play, but the stuff I’ve managed to do in sci-fi has always stretched the boundaries a bit, which has always made it more interesting for me,” he said.
“I was a fan of Doctor Who before I was on Doctor Who. I watched Doctor Whoas a kid. I can remember watching Lost in Space. There’s so many things … I liked the original Star Trek. I love watching the evolution of sci-fi and fantasy. I was always so enamored by Ridley’s visions of especially Los Angeles, as I live here, in Blade Runner, and his visions of the future in Alien. What it is to be human, or more human than human. I love that stuff. I always did. I always thought that those were some of the greatest films ever made. And then piggyback with that, you’ve got so many great fantasy and genre movies alongside that that don’t necessarily have to be pure sci-fi. You look at something like Battlestar Galactica, which I was lucky enough to be in. I find it’s more akin to The West Wing than it is to, say, Star Trek. It has a political standpoint,” said Sheppard.
Genre television has taken on a whole new life, said the actor. “I think with the advent of cable and with the advent of the fans who are now writing and making shows, that’s what’s so extraordinary. The geeks really have inherited the Earth, if you think about it. The kids that were writing sci-fi stories at school are now writing sci-fi stories for television and for film and for graphic novels. There’s so much more out there with the proliferation of the Internet and the delivery systems. There’s now a better way of reaching your audience than there used to be when we only had three channels and everything had to fit a certain format,” he said.
“What better job is there in the world than the telling of stories? It’s the most amazing thing. It’s something that I did before I did it for a job and something that I love so much, and I hope I get to continue to do it. As far as Supernaturalis concerned, I don’t think we’re done yet. I think there’s more stories to tell. That’s what makes it so much fun.”

In this interview with Blastr, Sheppard talks a lot about his character, who has undergone a lot of development in recent seasons.

“Crowley’s been a very interesting evolution. I mean, he went from being what is apparently a crossroads demon to running Hell and then to having difficulties running Hell and then ultimately to be in exile. He’s trying to regain his position. It’s just a fantastic arc to play. I haven’t had as much time, I must say, with the other characters, to do that. While I’ve had a lot of fun on a lot of other shows, the stories have tended to be of less duration. So Crowley, I’ve done, what, 30 episodes or so by now? It’s over five seasons. It’s a long time. It’s a lovely journey to take,” said Sheppard.

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