Based on the recently released trailer, Tacoma FD Season 2 looks like it’s going to pack as much of a ridiculous punch as Season 1. We caught up with Tacoma’s Gabriel Hogan (Ike Crystal) to confirm just how ridiculous Season 2 will get (in case you haven’t heard, Hogan got up to some Nutty Professor-level shenanigans) and to address the very curious bet his fellow castmates made about him.
 
CTV COMEDY CHANNEL: Firstly, I want to ask if the on-set dynamic between the Tacoma FD cast members changed during the filming of Season 2 compared to Season 1. Was there a bit of a lighter atmosphere since you had already gotten to know one another from the first season?
 
GABRIEL HOGAN: It wasn’t that different because we clicked so well…it was ridiculous how well we clicked in Season 1. So coming back for Season 2 was like coming back to summer camp… leading up to it, we were so excited…also the writers’ room was open to us. We were in there talking about what was coming up and everything, it was just so much fun. Even though we had a lot of time in between seasons, it didn’t really feel like we had been gone that long. We sort of picked up where we left off.
 
Speaking of the writer’s room, I heard that there’s a storyline where we get to meet Ike’s family members, some of who you actually play – is that correct?
 
We did a poll here in the U.S. to see who was the best actor suited to do something like that, and I came up as 30th on the list but number one on the show… no, I’m just kidding. But I do, I do play some of my own family members and it was a dream…with Kevin Heffernan and Steve Lemme, the co-showrunners---of course some people would know them as the Chief and the Captain---we goof around on set and come up with bits and everything, but also you riff on stuff… I don’t know if I should give away who or what I play, so this story’s kind of dying as I tell it, but let’s just say it was born out of goofing on set. And be careful what you wish for, because they will write it. They will write things in that they think are funny. So it was great. It was challenging, but it was so. Much. Fun.



Would you say that playing multiple characters was the weirdest thing you had to do in Season 2? Or is there something that tops that?
 
No it absolutely was. Because you’re doing scenes with yourself basically, right? It’s television, so there’s not a lot of time to do things. So when you’re shooting one role, when you have a scene with yourself, you’re like ‘ok, I’ll say the lines this way, I’ll say the lines this way.’ But you forget [that] when there’s four people in the scene, shooting at least four different angles as that character and then another four on the other side. Not to mention yourself, and then another character, and then a wide, if that makes sense. You end up doing a lot, so there’s not as much room for improvisation. And if you do [improvise], you’d better f*cking remember what you said eight takes ago [laughs].
 
I also read that you got some guest stars to come on for Season 2, like Jeff Dunham and Bobby Moynihan (Saturday Night Live). Can you talk a little bit about what it was like to work with them?
 
Yeah, it was great. Joey Pants, Joe Pantoliano… from The Sopranos, who was an absolute treat, such a sweetheart. Bobby Moynihan, of course, hilarious… Jeff Dunham---to be honest, I wasn’t familiar with him before I looked him up and then I was like ‘oh my god, he’s in the most famous pool of comedians ever.’ He was great, he did a great bit on the show where he brought his---I don’t know if you’re supposed to call it a puppet, I don’t remember, but anyways… they were all great. The calibre of guest stars we had, not knocking anyone we had last year, but once you have a season of a show under your belt I think you can sort of lure people in and say ‘look, we have a show and it’s really good, you should come and do it!’ So having those guys come to play was absolutely amazing.
 
Jimmy Tatro (22 Jump Street), too, came back. All the cops came back, [which was] so much fun. Those are some of my favourite episodes from the current season, too, when we do all the stuff with the cops, the rivalry with Tacoma PD.  
 
Last year, and earlier in our conversation, you talked about getting to improvise a lot of your scenes. Can you think of an instance where you improvised during a scene in Season 2 and it turned out even better than you expected it to?
 
We do so much, we go so far on this show, there are rabbit holes of improv. We almost forget sometimes like, ‘what were we doing, what are the actual lines?’ The great thing about it is they do let us go---not alter the storyline, obviously. But I would say, from what I can recall right now, would be the second episode, which is sort of a whodunit kind of thing we came up with, with the cops. We’re investigating an arsonist…I’m with Jimmy Tatro, and we’re in a surveillance van. It’s just us in the van, and we’re going bonkers because we’re on a sort of stakeout. We sort of bond over the fact that we’re both flat earthers---and they’re just morons, both of them. You can imagine the places that we took it, just rambling about ridiculous things. When we were cutting it together and looping the ADR…we had a whole other episode of footage of two guys in this fan. So that’s one that definitely jumps out.


 
Final question – in one of the recent behind the scenes videos for Tacoma FD, a couple of the cast members pegged you as the one to cry the most this season. How would you like to respond to those accusations?
 
Well first of all, I want you to send me the names of who said that. I have no idea what that even means [laughs]. I think it’s just sort of background to me being the best actor on the show, you know? So if somebody needed to cry, they would probably throw that my way just because if the intense abilities that I carry and the size of my acting chops. So thank you, fellow castmates, for once again voting me the best actor on the show.
 
Tacoma FD returns April 9 on CTV Comedy Channel.