“My lifelong quest has been to figure out how sad you can make things, and also be funny.” – Griffin Newman
While the title character of The Tick might be named after an insect, the concept itself has demonstrated a feline-like nine lives with its various incarnations since the comedic superhero was created in the 1980s. Currently, the character appears on Amazon’s live-action series, The Tick. Of course, The Tick might have superpowers but is more-or-less completely incompetent if not for his sidekick, Arthur, played on the series by Griffin Newman, who was already a fan of The Tick. Speaking with SyFy, Newman talks about getting cast in the role and how he feels about making Arthur’s tragic backstory funny.
Newman reveals that the further along he went in the casting process, the more he wanted the role. He reveals, “When I got the call back and I moved along in the process, it made me more desperate to be part of it. I went through the process thinking it would be cool to tell people I got this close to playing Arthur. [Laughs] I assumed they would want to cast someone more well-known than me. I just tried to stand by my guns and see how far I could get. It’s insane that I’m working on it now, a year later.”
One aspect of the character that intrigued Newman was making Arthur’s tragic origin work in a comedic series. He explains, “My lifelong quest has been to figure out how sad you can make things, and also be funny. It’s what I love when I see that in projects so I’ve attempted to do that kind of thing. The psychology of Arthur was so clear. I just hoped they wanted it to be played real. The gambit I tried to make on this is very often trying to play it like I’m in a drama and the comedy will come out of the juxtaposition between the situations and the visuals, and this really unlikely guy in the middle of it. I put that foot forward.”