INTERVIEW: Cody Christian and Max Carver (Teen Wolf)

Published on theMusic.com.au, Apr 2016

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Enraging ‘Teen Wolf’ Fans, Vegemite Burritos & The Show’s Brilliant Darkness

Teen Wolf stars Cody Christian and Max Carver embody their characters on screen so well that fans confront them on the street about their actions on the show. The pair sits down with Daniel Cribb to discuss the series’ dark tones, the next season and all things Oz Comic-Con.

US actors Cody Christian and Max Carver have accomplished a lot with their careers in a short amount of time. They’ve seen a lot of different things and worked numerous projects (Christian having had an impressive stint on Pretty Little Liars and a bunch more and Carver working on The Leftovers and Desperate Housewives to name a couple) but they haven’t visited Australia prior to their Oz Comic-Con debut, and their excitement and curiosity, mixed with jetlag, yields some hilarious and dangerous hints as to what they’ll be doing with their time.

“What I wanted to do,” Carver begins, “was drive from Perth to Adelaide. How sick would that be!” They throw some more ideas back and forth on their first day Down Under and it only gets worse from there. “Vegemite burrito? Best idea ever,” he continues.

Once the convention hits, there’ll be little time for exploring, with a slew of panels and crowd-interactions waiting, the latter of which might result in some uncomfortable confrontations in regards to Teen Wolf. “Dude, the spectrum is so huge,” Christian says of the one-on-one fan chats. “I’ve been asked things from ‘What’s your favourite this? What’s your favourite that?’ to ‘Can I see your bare feet?’” he says. “I got that one too!” Carver adds. “The answer is ‘no’, for the record.”

“I’ve made my place as the most hated villain,” Christian says of his character, Theo Raeken, which elicits laughter from Caver. “Honestly, my likeability lasted about two episodes. In episode three people realised I wasn’t who I was and it just went downhill really fast.”

“Sometimes the fans confuse you with the character a bit, so you’ll walk into a room and they boo you,” Carver interjects. “I’ve had a lot of that,” Carver confirms. “I’m not shitting you, I had somebody come up to me in the street and say, ‘Why did you get in between Scott and Stiles.’ I was like, ‘Woah! That wasn’t me. I don’t know who that douchebag is, but I’ll have a talking to him.’”

It’s really a testament to how well they portrayed their characters on the MTV hit, a show that just wrapped its fifth season. Christian portrays the aforementioned villain, and Carver took on Aiden. They both spent some time as the bad guy, more so Christian, who played it well until (spoiler) his death at the season’s end. “It’s interesting too, because you get to really test yourself as a performer, as an artist,” Christian explains. “It’s playing it so the audience knows and they’re following along, but also so that you’re deceiving the character in front of you; that in itself was not only challenging, but it was a blast.”

An earlier comment from Carver (“you’re coming back?”) suggests that Raeken may indeed be returning to the show. “This is the way I say it – and I’m telling you the truth – I honestly don’t know. I don’t know if I’ll be there. The way I’ll leave it is, if there’s a story to be told that involves Theo, I’m sure I’ll be back, and if there’s not, there’s not.”

Bringing characters back from the dead isn’t unheard on the show, either, so it’s not a stretch to think he might come back, Carver being proof of that having departed the show in season three and returning for the most recent run. “It’s funny, because I had told Jeff [Davis, writer] that my brother and I wanted to go work on another show,” Carver recalls — he often commits to projects with his twin brother, Charlie. “Jeff has always been so supportive, but I was just like, ‘Please don’t kill me because I’ll come back in heartbeat.’ And he killed me! But I know he’d at least find a way to let me come back for a bit.”

Carver’s departure from the show is widely regarded as one of the most emotional, which once again goes back to his acting and the direction of Davis. It’s those relationships that Christian believes make the show so powerful and easy for fans to connect with. “It’s this aspect of relatively; yeah, you have these circumstances and this environment of a supernatural world and all these things happening that are so other worldly, but at the end of the day, what is Teen Wolf rooted in? It’s the relationships between people.

“It’s these teenagers going through the impossible and developing themselves, finding these relationships. It’s a struggle and a dynamic that our younger fans going through high school and even their 20s are dealing with on a daily basis; it’s rooted in this emotional place of seeing these teens develop.”

“I also think it’s the likeability and levity that got brought into the show early on,” Carver says. “What I love about Teen Wolf – because we both had to watch it before we joined to know what we were going into – was how much humour there was, in spite of this dark world. It would have been very easy to make it a serious, dark show – which it goes to – but I think it’s the balance and relationships and likeably and love between the characters.”

Season five, by comparison to the rest, takes a very dark turn, which sees key relationships strained. It’s a direction that both think will aid the next season. “[The darkness] allowed the characters to mature in a way; it really pressed this level of maturity on the characters,” Christian explains. “I think it was what the show needed at the time to further develop those characters, to further prepare them for season six. I think it was necessary, and they were clever about how they did it.”

“Every year there is a different mythology that Jeff plays with,” Carver says. “You have the Berserkers one year, when we were working you had the kitsune, I’m just excited to see what’s next; what world Jeff’s going to bring into Beacon Hill. You were saying the relationships – I’m kind of curious – I think the fans have been waiting a long time for certain relationships to happen and come together and I kind of want to see that happen.”

You can catch Cody Christian and Max Carver at Oz Comic-Con in Perth (2 & 3 Apr) and Adelaide (9-10 Apr). Find everything you need to know right here.

http://themusic.com.au/interviews/all/2016/04/01/cody-christian-max-carver-daniel-cribb/

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