Although J.K. Simmons returned to the comic book movie realm in Justice League, his most rewarding role of 2017 was a man at war with himself in the Starz original series, Counterpart. Simmons plays a dual role as Howard Silk. On one Earth, Howard is a low level employee of a spy agency. But on the other Earth, Howard is a skilled undercover agent whose missions have encompassed both worlds.
The second season of Counterpart started last week, and it left the two Howards in very different places. SYFY Wire recently caught up with Simmons to talk about Counterpart, and he was very excited to share a taste of the stories that lie ahead.
“When we meet both Howards at the beginning of Season 2, they are displaced in each others’ world,” noted Simmons. “One is in an even worse spot than the other... they’re very much separated from each other.”
According to Simmons, no one told him that he’d be playing two characters on the show before he read the pilot script. So it came as a surprise to him when the twist was revealed.
“When I first read the first episode, which was all I had to go on at the beginning, I didn’t know that it was two characters,” admitted Simmons. “So I was initially drawn to the kinder, gentler Howard that we first meet. And then, 20 pages in, when I saw the bombshell that there are two versions of this guy... I still sort of viewed the first Howard as the protagonist. That was the perspective that I viewed everything from. As we started shooting... I still view that Howard as the protagonist, but that doesn’t mean the other Howard’s the bad guy either.”
Simmons also shared a few hints about Howard Prime’s complicated relationships, but you’ll have to watch the full video to hear those details!