Talk to American television aficionados and they will tell you how shows are generously peppered with stereotypes and storylines following folks at the FBI or agents at a Counter Terrorist Unit. How then, does a new military show ensure it doesn’t end up being a clichéd run-of-the-mill offering? Ahead of the Indian première of his latest military drama, The Brave, actor Mike Vogel talks to us about breaking stereotypes and his role as Captain Adam Dalton, leader of the Special Forces team.
Not your usual warfare
Vogel says, that unlike its predecessors, The Brave is “anything but a direct action military show”. Apart from the usual military drama fare of shootouts, encounters and gun welding, this show promises a lot more espionage element in its narrative. The story, whose protagonists are heroic undercover operatives, is primarily pegged on a set of two teams: one, an intelligence powered strategy driven team in Washington DC while the other, a Special Forces unit on missions to track down arms dealers and drug cartels. “This unit takes the best of Navy Seal, the Special Force, the CIA operatives. They put them all together on a team and they become the premier intelligence gatherers, not just for the United States, but for the world,” explains Vogel.
Th e Brave boasts of a cast whose members hail from varied ethnic backgrounds, and collectively speak 11 different languages. The team also has several military advisors on board who assisted with moulding the storyline. For example, the show’s technical advisor, Mikal Vega, is a former US Navy SEAL. “He (Vega) was constantly training us, putting us through various tests to make sure that we are being true to the nature of the work,” says Vogel. Remaining calm under pressure and adapting to dangerous situations was an important character trait to be developed. “I have a lot of friends at Special Forces units, exactly like the one we are portraying. They say when everything around them turns chaotic, the world turns quiet and calm,” he continues.
The everyday hero
The shows hopes to stand as a reminder to its viewers of potential extraordinary heroism in seemingly ordinary people. “While you may not find yourself in situations like we are portraying, the fact remains that there is bravery, courage and resilience in all of us. You may think you’re having a bad day, but there are people out there having a lot worse,” he says. For Vogel, if you’re still moving, you have what it takes to get through.
The Brave premières on AXN on September 30, and will air every Saturday at 10 pm