(A version of this story was published Saturday, Oct. 20, 2012 in the Life section of The Oklahoman.)
The pilot episode of the new drama “Beauty and the Beast” featured just the beginnings of a good old-fashioned romance, according to star Jay Ryan.
The New Zealand native, 31, who appeared in “Terra Nova” last season, spoke to The Oklahoman about the new series, which airs at 8 p.m. Thursdays on The CW.
“That’s just a little taste of it. It kind of grows ’cause they’re two people that are from completely different gamuts in life. She’s a detective and he is this kind of messed up individual internally and has this killer instinct which he can’t control. She puts people like him away usually, so the courting process of two people like that is very difficult, and it’s going to be an interesting watch, I think,” Ryan said.
This update loosely based on the classic tale centers on New York City homicide detective Catherine “Cat” Chandler (Kristin Kreuk) and her discovery of the Beast, Vincent Keller (Ryan), a doctor who was reportedly killed while serving in Afghanistan in 2002.
Vincent participated in a military experiment gone wrong which created his beast-like tendencies, including super-strength and heightened senses he is unable to control when he becomes enraged.
Vincent has been under a self-imposed incarceration of sorts, living in hiding with childhood friend and biochemistry researcher turned professor J.T. Forbes (Austin Basis) while they try to find a cure for the Beast.
While also wanting to feel he has a purpose in life, Vincent has been playing rescuer to people in danger at night.
These vigilante-type ways made him cross paths with Catherine in the past, and now a tentative relationship between them has begun.
The romantic side of the show should attract fans of the late 1980s-era “Beauty and the Beast” series.
“What we are doing is taking some ingredients from “Beauty and the Beast” and baking a totally different cake. So, I guess, what they will really like the taste of is the romance, the romantic element, which is gonna be a strong part of the series, which basically is at the heart of any “Beauty and the Beast” story, I believe,” Ryan said.
Viewers don’t have to be fans of the ’80s version to like this one, however, but enjoying vintage romance is a plus.
“I think the idea of classical romance in a modern version of a show is something that has kind of been left by the way side in primetime television, so I think that the whole sort of old version of courting someone in a kind of very noble way is going to be something very cool for this show as an element for audiences to watch.”
And romance fans aren’t the only ones who will be able to find something they like about the show.
“Also, there’s a really good sort of action segment to the show, which I think any sort of audience will be struck by the quality of that for a television show. So, hopefully, there’s something for everyone,” Ryan said.
To watch the “Beauty and the Beast” premiere, visit http://www.cwtv.com/cw-video/beauty-and-the-beast/.
The second episode airs at 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18 on The CW.
– Melissa Hayer
Follow me on Twitter: @MelissaHayer