season 10, we've been introduced to and gotten to know Rowena (played by Ruth Connell), a natural-born witch who just happens to also be Fergus' (Crowley's) mother. As we've learned of her estranged relationship with him, we've gotten to see the ways in which she's able to manipulate him to do what she wants. It's clear Rowena wants to be in control of him, but how impressionable is Crowley, really?
Ruth Connell weighs in on the curious dynamic between the two of them.
Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us!
I'm delighted, thanks for having me!
So, your character has really brought an interesting dynamic to the show with Crowley (or Fergus). Since we've known Crowley, there really hasn't been anyone that can manipulate his actions. He's usually the one doing that to other people. What do you think it is about Rowena that makes her able to sort of make him do what she wants?
I think he might seem to do what I want. We had the conversation in the last episode where I [Rowena] said, "duh! Of course I've been manipulating you, that's who we are." There's an understanding, we're playing a game on a certain level. What was interesting for me, was very early on when I was being strangled by Gerald (played by Viv Leacock) in "Things You Left Behind,"
he [Crowley] stepped in and killed Gerald, who was his top dog at the time. I think that moment was important. Even though he's Crowley, he's no longer Fergus, it's just a meat suit, he couldn't just stand by and let his mum be killed. So I think there's something there that's being explored. I think he's aware. I full expect Crowley is aware of what I'm doing. We know each other pretty well, but we're still playing a game within a game. We're just seeing how far things can go. I think I managed to throw him off balance in "The Hunter Games"
and make him a bit paranoid. Also, I think the main thing is that I'm not wrong, right? I mean, as his mother, as Rowena, I'm not wrong about the Winchesters. It is a weakness. He's not being himself, he's not being as evil a creature as the King of Hell should be. I want him to evil up. (laughs)
Do you think deep down Crowley really does care about Rowena's approval, or is it possibly just another one of his plans to use someone for his own personal gain?
I mean, there must be a reason he just doesn't get rid of her, kill her. There must be something. I even heard Mark Sheppard say that I'm no longer his [Crowley's] mother because he's no longer Fergus. But there is that molecule of humanity in him. You can never quite, even if you extricate yourself from your parents completely, you can never quite forget. I mean, Crowley was pretty upset and angry when he was yelling, "you left me! You put me in a workhouse!" (laughs)
I mean, he was pretty upset about that. I think sometimes you're just working through things, it's a process for them and it'll be interesting to see where they land. There's a few twists and turns to come, I can tell you.
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You and Mark Sheppard really play well off of each other; did it take a lot of work to develop that chemistry?
He's great, he's just a great actor. He's great at playing Crowley and he made me feel really welcome. You know, I came prepared, I came hopefully with a lot to offer and he was so positive about what I was doing. We seemed to really enjoy playing off of each other. You never know when you work with somebody if it's going to happen or not. You can try and manufacture it. But I do realize how lucky I am working with Mark, and it does
seem to work! (laughs)
We love to spar off of each other. I'm a lucky girl for sure.
We last saw Rowena telling Crowley he was pathetic and just "the Winchester's bitch" as she was leaving. In this week's episode, Crowley captures Olivette for her. What can we expect from Rowena this week?
I think there's two things going on. I think there's the emotional thing underneath, where you can't help yourself. You're trying to please and trying to see what happens. But also, I think at some point he must have something to gain from it, like we were talking about before. That's what Mark always says about Crowley, that he's always however many steps ahead. I think it's quite funny. Well, hopefully it's funny. (laughs)
Rowena's in Hell, and she's pretty disgruntled. And nobody wants a disgruntled Rowena messing about. So partly, I think it's giving a dog a bone in a way. And maybe there's a third reason...