(Warning: This post contains spoilers for Wednesday’s Season 5 premiere of “Jane the Virgin”)
“Jane the Virgin” fans finally learned exactly what happened to Michael (Brett Dier) on Wednesday’s premiere of the CW telenovela’s fifth and final season. And that meant finding out that Michael isn’t Michael anymore, but Jason: a slow-talking Montana man who doesn’t remember his lovely widow — err, wife, Jane (Gina Rodriguez).
TheWrap spoke with Dier about returning to the Jennie Snyder Urman-created drama for that big twist and how he created this new character for the show’s final batch of episodes.
“The accent was important,” the actor, who was killed off “Jane the Virgin” in Season 3, said. (Except now we know Rose actually faked the whole thing and had Michael electroshocked into forgetting who he was and dropped in the middle of the Pacific Northwest so no one would find him.)
“I also thought it was kinda telenovela-y to have some Southern accent when he’s only been there for five years (laughs),” Dier said. “I think that’s just kind of a fun thing to add — as well as I gained like 23 pounds or something to look really thick. And I had this backstory in my mind that the guy just pretty much eats meat and beans and heavy things all day long. So, I wanted to make him kind of look bigger. I grew that beard and just subtle things that I added like facial expressions. That low quiet voice and being confused and insecure — very different from Michael.”
Yes, very different from the charming, friendly Michael “Jane” fans know and love. And who Jane loved, of course.
“Yeah, that was interesting for me, because he has no memory you know five years or something in Montana in a field,” Dier said. “So that made me go, ‘OK, he knows nothing about those five years.’ So I had to create somebody completely different because these people no longer exist to this guy. It’s like being reborn completely.”
“I thought it was really important for me to kind of stay in my own world while I was Jason,” he added. “I didn’t want to match a tone of any of the other characters, I wanted to create a tone where I wasn’t from that world. I wanted to be completely disconnected from those characters in a way and not match the tone of the show. It was important to exist in my own little world as the character and not have any kind of response beyond confusion and being insecure and quiet because I have no idea who any of these people are but they know me so well, which is very confusing for the character. So I tried not to react how the others would react and just be kind of subtle in it all.”
“Jane the Virgin” airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on The CW.