As Lieutenant Grace Shepard on ABC’s “Last Resort,” Daisy Betts is one fierce female.
In episode 2, facing off against an off-the-books Russian force bent on capturing Captain Marcus Chaplin’s (Andre Braugher) submarine (and its 17 nukes), Lt. Shepard proved she’s got the power to be just as strong in the field as she is under the sea.
Last week’s episode of the new ABC drama was a thrill, and the Australian actress (who fans recognize from “Harry’s Law”) said there’s plenty more to come on the must-watch new show from creators Shaun Ryan (“The Shield”) and Karl Gajdusek.
AccessHollywood.com: You got to do some fighting on last week’s episode. I assume there was some gun training for that?
Daisy Betts: I did! I did gun training and I was so excited to put it into action. At one point, I was charging up that hill and I was shooting and the stunt guy had to come over to me and say, ‘Now, that’s perfect, it’s really good. It’s everything that we taught you. Your form is amazing, but you have to remember this is TV and we can’t see your face and you’re running too fast.’ (laughs)
Daisy: I’m like, ‘This is what you told me. I can’t put my gun down in front of my face because then I’m not protected, you know, and I can’t see my line of fire.’ All this stuff that I’d learnt that I just wanted to do when I was running as fast as I could, and you know, sometimes you just have to remember that it’s not reality.
Access: Hilarious – you were too enthusiastic and so was Grace!
Daisy: I feel like there was something ignited in her and I think part of that was the confidence that she can do things by herself. I don’t think she’s going to be so dependent on thinking ‘But, I need these other people, but I need to follow this and I need to do that.’ The rules have already been broken, so there’s no need for her to worry about that anymore and I think this has given her that confidence to say, ’I’m gonna do whatever the hell I want!’
Access: Robert Patrick’s character — Master Chief Joseph Prosser – he knows her, knows her dad, and is mad she followed Capt. Chaplin. He also mistrusts how she got to be a lieutenant. Do you think it was a combination of her being an Admiral’s daughter and hard work, or just her hard work that got her the position on the sub?
Daisy: For my mind, it was all her hard work. I don’t think she’s one to take any handouts and she has had a privileged life in a sense. She went to the academy. You have to get nominated to go there and vouched for by someone in a high position, but my understanding was it wasn’t her father who did that… She’s very intelligent and she moved quickly through the ranks because she’s very able and capable. But the thing is, someone like Prosser wasn’t privy to any of that. He doesn’t know what her grades were, he doesn’t know what she’s capable of, he just sees the Admiral’s daughter suddenly in a high ranking position on his boat and doesn’t like it at all, so there’s a great love-hate relationship between these two characters and it’s really fun to play.
Access: And he nearly got her killed last week by turning two soldiers against her. It seems like her only two allies are Capt. Chaplin and XO Sam Kendall (Scott Speedman). How dangerous is it going to get for her if she only has two allies? And, well, SEAL James King (Daniel Lissing), a little bit.
Daisy: A little bit. He’s not allied with anyone. He’ll just do whatever the hell he wants and I think that’s something that frustrates Grace. In the last episode she says, ‘Sooner or later you’re going to have to decide what you believe in. You’ve gotta pick sides!’ … I think the thing [we’ll see] coming up [for] Grace is her just shut everybody up once and for all, ‘This is why I’m here. This is what I’m capable of, so, do you believe me now,’ kind of thing. She really has some great moments in that sense and she can more than look after herself, I think.
Access: Go girl power!
Daisy: Totally! I agree. I think she’s just an amazing kind of inspiration and yeah, she does have her vulnerable moments as well, but she certainly keeps those to herself. She’s not gonna go crying to anyone because she knows that that’s a vulnerability that she doesn’t want anyone to see.
Access: Will we get to see any of her backstory?
Daisy: There is a little flashback in the episode that we’re doing now which is the eighth episode. Yeah, there’s a little bit of insight into her history and I think it’s a very, very insightful piece.
Access: As the show continues will there be a problem/conflict to solve every week, or can we expect more answers on what happened on that SEAL mission and who sent the order to bomb Pakistan?
Daisy: Definitely the characters back in D.C. are working on it. They’re making headway on that, but we don’t really have an opportunity to investigate that because we’re dealing with the week-to-week threats. My feeling is they are the biggest target on the planet, not just from the Americans who are trying to cover up this story, but also people from other countries trying to come and steal the submarine. Everybody wants to have their finger on the button of these nuclear weapons. They have a lot power. Marcus Chaplin has a lot of power right now, which is what everybody wants. So yeah, week to week, we’re dealing with different things, but where those threats come from is totally unexpected every week, which is really excited to read and to play.
Access: I hope the show gets the full season. If it does, are you happy to settle in Hawai’i?
Daisy: I already have. I’m ready to stay. I’m actually only one of the only cast members, I think, who really, really feels settled here… Hawai’i’s a beautiful place to raise a family. I have a two-and-a-half-year old son and we just put him in preschool, so yeah, I’m ready to stay.
“Last Resort” airs Thursdays at 8/7c on ABC.
-- Jolie Lash