BuddyTV interviews Josh Gomez, who plays Morgan Grimes on Chuck.
Joshua Gomez, really, anchors half of Chuck. It may be the half of the series that gets talked about the least, but it is integral nonetheless. Chuck is basically two different shows – one half spy adventure, one half office comedy. Josh plays Morgan, Chuck’s best friend and loyally lazy Buy More employee. While he may not be in on much of the spy action, Gomez is front and center for all the shenanigans at the Buy More. Morgan has had more screen time this season on Chuck, and we were lucky enough to speak with Gomez today about the current season and what we can expect from the future.
Below you will find the transcript of the interview, as well as the full mp3 audio.
Hey, this is Oscar Dahl from BuddyTV and I’m here with Joshua Gomez from Chuck. Josh, how’s it going?
It’s going well, man. Thanks for having me.
No problem. So, Chuck, especially in the second season, has been well-regarded by the critics, but the ratings haven’t been all that great. However, NBC picked up the full season, they seem to have a lot of faith, and it looks like they’re going to make a big push for the show, during the Super Bowl especially. What’s the feeling on set these days?
Everything is really positive, and really upbeat and stuff. That’s just the general tone of our show anyway, the way we all get along and kind of keep the set running that way. And as far as the ratings are concerned, I’m always kind of asking everybody…I think right now, the way TV is, I just don’t know if…they haven’t been mind-boggling, but they’re not super bad either, obviously, because we’re still on the air. That system, it doesn’t account for, obviously, how many people are actually watching. I just don’t know how completely relevant those numbers are. It seems to me there’s a lot more people watching the show, or downloading it, or Tivo-ing it or whatever. So, I think that’s a factor and I know that the feedback that NBC and Warner Bros. gets about the show is always, from advertisers to just fans and whatever, it’s always pretty high. It’s always really great feedback. I think they’re happy. We’d all love to see bigger Nielsen numbers, sure, but I think right now they’re actually pretty happy. So, we don’t feel any of that , like “Ooh, boy, we’re not doing good.” So that’s not getting filtered down to us at all.
It must be nice being at NBC, because it seems like other networks have a faster trigger finger…
That’s true too. That’s, honestly, the other side of it. That’s what I mean too. You know, would these numbers play on ABC right now? Maybe not, but I think that’s what’s great about NBC, because they have a different approach right now. They know where their network is right now and that they’re going to play by their own rules, in the sense that they’re going to give their shows some time to grow, you know what I mean?
I think something like The Office was a good precedent, where it started off real slow, but NBC built into something big.
30 Rock did the same thing. And then if you go back to Friends and Seinfeld, season 1, season 2, it took awhile. That’s how you build a franchise and build a brand. Not saying that were Friends or Seinfeld or anything like that, but it takes a little time sometimes. So, they’ve been really patient with not only us, but most of their shows. We couldn’t really ask for anything more. We’re good, we’re pretty happy.
Moving to your character Morgan, it seems that the second season has focused at least a little bit more on the Buy More and the staff of the Buy More. Have you enjoyed the story lines, and have you felt the difference from season 1 to season 2?
Yeah, for sure. I am definitely pleased with more Buy More stuff, it’s always a lot more fun. I think that it’s such a cool aspect of the show and what makes the show unique, in that you have two completely different worlds. And, so the more we show of the two different worlds, the better the show is. On the flip side of that, it’s a little odd…me and Zach always talk – if I have one complaint, it’s that it’s been a lot less of actual Chuck and Morgan stuff and way more Morgan and the Nerd Herd and Mike and even Emmitt, played by Tony Hale. There’s a lot more of that. The story lines so far in season have been Chuck sort of popping in and doing whatever at the Buy More, and then he’s definitely way more submerged in the spy aspects this season. My point is that I miss…me and Zach have such a great, on and off the set, we have this natural chemistry and that’s one aspect that I miss, just doing more with him, because we have such a great time. But, otherwise I can’t complain, it’s really good.
Going into that, Chuck, more so this season, has been almost two separate shows. There’s the spy stuff and then the Buy More, especially with Chuck not at the Buy More as much. Do you ever want to get more involved in the action parts of the show and do you ever wish that maybe Morgan maybe found out about Chuck’s secrets so you could get involved in that other world?
Yes and no. I think that for my own personal reasons, I would love it because it would mean more to do and more to do with Zach and to be a part of that world would open up those avenues. I believe that in order for this show to survive though, our writers, I trust them, they’re smarter men and women than I. I would think that if the show was to go beyond season two and into season three or four, if it got those kind of legs, you would have to kind of go down these avenues, you’re going to have to start to explore different ways. How long can Chuck keep that a secret from his best friend? How long can he keep it a secret from his sister? But, then again, that’s how the show kind of pivots. It does pivot on the fact that he is the one guy caught in the middle of these two very different worlds, so if you start to fuse those worlds does it lose any of that kind of thing? I see a little bit of the struggle there. I don’t think that Morgan would never really necessarily go into the action part of it. If he found out, then he would then…I have been describing it as he could be the Alfred to his Batman. Even on the home front, he would have this guy to come home to, “Oh, this happened,” or “Morgan, I need you to do this.” And at least he knows why now. That could open up new doors, and that could open up more comedy on that front too. Again, I think, given the chance, I expect certain things like that to eventually happen, but honestly I have no idea.
Since you are separate from most of the action stuff, do you get to enjoy watching the new episodes in sort of a fan point of view?
That’s funny. That’s actually kind of a cool question, because I’m not there during the making of that. Now, I read the scripts, so I know the idea, but it is fun. To answer your question, absolutely. I’m there doing my side of it or whatever, but then when I actually watch an episode – and usually we watch them together on set. We’ll usually, at lunch, we’ll do a viewing, a screening of the upcoming episode so everyone gets to see their work from crew and camera to hair and make up, so everyone gets to see how their job was done. That’s always fun for us too, we’re all together, laughing and you go, “Yeah, that’s great. I remember reading that scene. It’s better than I thought.” It’s always a treat for me, because it’s unexpected and new to watch.
Can you tell us a little about what’s in store for Morgan over the next couple of episodes and maybe in general what’s going to happen for the rest of the season?
Yeah, there’s some fun stuff coming up, actually. Tonight is a great story-line for Morgan because he definitely squares off and takes a little more charge against Emmitt Milbarge, again, the Tony Hale character. Emmitt’s really going to be railing after Chuck. He knows something’s up. What up with this guy? He’s never here or anything. He’s never around, but nobody at the store seems to care. And, so Morgan without any explanation – because I don’t even think Morgan really knows what’s up, why his friend is missing, I think he just assumes it’s the girlfriend thing – but of course, like a friend, the reasons don’t matter. He’s just protective of his friend. There’s some fun stuff, some good story-lines there. Over the next couple episodes he’s going head to head with Emmitt and then there’s some stuff coming up with Anna that’s funny. She comes in and is like “I’m tired of making out in the home theater room all the time. We need to get our own place or do something.” And it’s the last thing Morgan wants to hear because his whole philosophy is as little work as possible, as little responsibility as possible. Hearing “let’s move in together” is like “(makes banshee cat noise).” There’s some fun stuff, there’s some good episodes coming up.
There’s been a lot of hype about the big Super Bowl episode that will air the day after in 3D. Have you guys shot that episode yet?
Yeah, yeah we did, dude. It was incredible. It’s nuts. It’s a whole new way of having to shoot. Even the language and hearing the camera guys – it was pretty intense, but it was a lot of fun. I haven’t seen the finished project or anything, but we were able to see certain playback stuff and we’d throw on these glasses and we were cracking up, like “My lord. As if my head wasn’t big enough.” It’s pretty cool, man, I hope people dig it. I’m hoping that that’s something that helps, even if you weren’t watching Chuck, you tune in. And then you go “That was pretty cool. It’s a fun show, it’s really entertaining.” And if that’s a thing that can help put more eyes on it, then I’m super excited.
All right, last question. If you had to choose, what would be your ideal story line for Morgan be?
It would probably involve having to come to Chuck’s rescue, saving the day. Unfortunately, Captain Awesome would fall victim to some horrible, evil plot. And then Morgan would have to be there to console Ellie, and then naturally one would thing would lead to another…and she would ask me to leave, I’m sure. Saving the day and winding up with Ellie I think would be the perfect Morgan story.
All right Josh, I appreciate you speaking with us today.
Ah, dude, my pleasure. Anytime. Thank you, Oscar.
All right, buddy.
-Interview Conducted by Oscar Dahl
(Image Courtesy of NBC)