‘The Equalizer’ Star Tori Kittles: ‘I Don’t Know If Dante Can Forgive His Father’ After Shocking Revelation

The actor also says it’s “put up or shut up time” for his and Queen Latifah’s will-they-or-won-they characters

Tori Kittles and Danny Johnson in "The Equalizer" episode "Condemned."
Tori Kittles and Danny Johnson in "The Equalizer" episode "Condemned." (CREDIT: Michael Greenberg/CBS)

Note: This story contains spoilers from “The Equalizer” Season 4, Episode 8.

Marcus Dante (Tori Kittles) and his estranged father Big Ben (Danny Johnson) had to rely on each other when enemies came gunning for them both in Sunday’s episode of “The Equalizer,” but a decades-long secret Ben reveals may hit Dante even harder.

Kittles spoke to TheWrap about Ben’s revelation that all the times he wasn’t there for Dante as a kid, he was spending time with his other family… and his other son.

TheWrap: Dante learns that he has a brother he never knew about. He’s kind of re-examining every moment of his life when his dad wasn’t there.

Tori Kittles: That’s exactly what he’s doing. Dante has always had a tumultuous relationship with his father, but now to know why his father wasn’t there a lot of his life, to know that his father was spending time with an entirely different family, that’s something that really hurts Dante.

He was at a point in this season where he was actually hoping that his father could be a part of his sons’ life, but his father had been a disappointment and let his grandkids down. And so to now learn that Dante has a brother, that’s something that I don’t know if Dante will be able to forgive his father for.

Tori Kittles and Danny Johnson in the "Condemned" episode of "The Equalizer"
Tori Kittles and Danny Johnson in the “Condemned” episode of “The Equalizer” (CREDIT: Michael Greenberg/ CBS)

And at the end of the episode, we still don’t know how his dad is going to survive his injuries.

Yeah, we’re left in where his father is in a coma and we don’t necessarily know whether he’s going to make it out alive or not. That’s a major emotional conflict for Dante, but [Big Ben]’s still his father. What if he father dies? How does Dante deal with that after learning this huge secret?

Will we meet the brother at some point?

We are going to meet the brother.

We learn that Dante was driving his dad home when he was 10. That’s a lot of responsibility for a kid.

There are things that Dante is even reminded of as he struggles with his father’s manipulations as he was growing up. The things that his father taught him, and some of the things that are instilled in him, they weren’t all bad. His father did give him the gift of being a fighter. He did give him the gift of figuring out things on your own. He gave him that tough love.

Dante can’t help but acknowledge that he would not be the man he is today without his father, for better or for worse.

After Big Ben has been wounded in warehouse standoff, he tells Dante, “Just leave me here,” and obviously Dante is not going to do that.

Yeah, he can’t leave him there. Dante is an honorable, honorable person. And, as much as he distrusts his father, as much as he’s at odds with his father, deep down he still loves his father. And he’s not going to let his father die on some cold concrete floor in a warehouse.

There is the sense that his dad doesn’t really know Dante that well if he actually expected him to leave him alone to die.

I think his father would have maybe justified his own mistakes if Dante would have left. But Dante doesn’t take that bait, he stays despite his father letting him down over the course of his life. Dante stays because that is the person that Dante is.

And it’s one of the things that Robyn (Queen Latifah) reminds him of in the last episode, she said, ‘You are not your father.’ And Dante takes that to heart, as all the things she says he takes to heart, because she sees him for who he really is, and that’s why he trusts her. And in this moment, he proves that he’s not his father. He’s not the guy who’s going to walk away when things get tough. He’s going to stick to it. He’s going to stay the course and he’s going to stand up for what he believes in when it matters most. And that’s character.

Queen Latifah and Tori Kittles in Season 4 of "The Equalizer"
Queen Latifah and Tori Kittles in Season 4 of “The Equalizer” (CREDIT: Michael Greenberg/CBS)

When he started out as a cop, he was very by- the-book, I think, as a sort of counterpoint to what his dad had done.

Exactly. Dante was by-the-book strictly. He was following the laws and the rules of the system and in his work with Robyn, over the course of time has opened his point of view up to the gray areas of life and that things aren’t always so black and white. There’s a lot of nuance to getting things done. And Robyn has shown him that.

What’s next for Dante and Robyn? The show has been teasing their romance for so long now.

Sometimes the thing you need is staring you right in the face, and Aunt Vi (Lorraine Toussaint) even alludes to this with Robyn, like “the things that you guys have in common are the things that could make you work.”

So for the two of them, it’s put up or shut up time, and we’re going, to the audience’s delight. I know Queen has been dealing with this and I deal with this all the time, where fans approach us and they want to know when what how where what’s going to happen with Robyn and Dante. Well, I can say that this is the season where they find that out.

“The Equalizer” airs Sundays at 8 pm ET/PT on CBS and streams on Paramount+.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.