Past, Present, and Patriotism: An Adam Baldwin Interview

Photo by Dave Nelson
Photo by Dave Nelson

“Quiet on the set! … We’re doing an interview here!”

From start to finish, this Daily Dragon reporter’s interview with Adam Baldwin was full of laughs and poignant moments. Baldwin is best known to sci-fi fans as badass mercenary Jayne Cobb in Firefly and angry Colonel John Casey in Chuck. He can currently be seen on TNT’s new hit sci-fi series The Last Ship.

Daily Dragon (DD): What’s been your favorite Dragon Con experience?

Adam Baldwin (AB): I would say watching the parade. Seeing all of the different characters walking up and down the street, the cosplay. Enjoying the spirit of the folks here because Dragon Con is more of a fan driven event, and you have more of a ground-up atmosphere. Dragon Con is very fan driven, and I love the fans.

DD: Can you deconstruct the artistry that went into perfecting the Casey grunt?

AB: In the bathroom…

DD: You’ve portrayed several roles as current or former military. Do you have any personal ties to the military?

AB: My father was in the Naval Air Corps at the tail end of World War II, and my grandfather was in the Army in World War I, Purple Heart. I’ve been honored and blessed to have worked on shows where I’m in uniform, and I try to honor it as much as I can. I have nothing but the highest regard for people who are in the armed forces. They keep us free and safe to do what we do. Here’s one right here, troublemaker [in reference to his handler, Logan].

DD: What was your inspiration for playing Jayne?

AB: My father used to take me to shoot-’em-ups… He liked to call them shoot-’em-ups in quotes… Westerns like The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, Once Upon a Time in the West, Dirty Harry movies, Steve McQueen movies, [and others]. Those kind of characters, committed actors who could portray bad guys but with a twinkle in the eye. I like to call them modern day sniper funny.

DD: Throwing it back way old school, what was it like being part of the blockbuster Independence Day?

AB: My favorite story of that was Jeff Goldblum and Judd Hirsch doing Jewish Death of a Salesman out on the Bonneville Salt Flats where it’s 140 degrees. I think we were all a little loopy and maybe a little dehydrated. They kept it shiny. I’ve heard rumors that they’ve been trying to do a sequel, but I don’t have anything official yet.

DD: Would you be interested?

AB: Well, sure!

DD: Out of all of your roles, which one was most memorable to you and why?

AB: It’s tough to answer that. I try to compartmentalize them. I have what I like to call mile-markers in my life. The first one being My Bodyguard and then moving forward to D.C. Cab and to Full Metal Jacket and then on into television roles I’ve had on The X-Files, Firefly, Casey on Chuck, and now I’m playing Mike Slattery. They’re all different times in my life. I would say, romantically speaking, because I didn’t get to finish the arc on Firefly, that whole piece holds a special place in my heart. It all really ties back to my dad and going to those movies and seeing those icons.

I’m really enjoying the one I’m playing now. I’m flattered. The right answer is your current job is your favorite job. Obviously, we all lament the fact that we weren’t able to close the loop on Firefly.

Author of the article

Not everyone can say they watch television for homework, read novels for inspiration, and are paid to follow what’s trending. For Alicia Pack, it is all part of life as a writer and media enthusiast.  When she isn't lost in the world she is trying to create, you can find her with her nose in a book or catching up on her favorite supernatural shows.  She has a Master’s degree in Mass Communications and a Bachelor’s degree in Radio, Television, and Film.  Her nine years of diverse media experience include news writing, copywriting, website content management, social media, promotions, television production, and teaching.