He wants back in the club—and he wants it bad. We’re just a month into Season 3 of ABC’s How to Get Away With Murder and Frank Delfino—the on-the-lam fixer played by Charlie Weber—has already killed two people: a hit man sent by his former boss Annalise (Viola Davis) and the sexually abusive father of assistant attorney Bonnie (Liza Weil). Frank is also the prime suspect in the assassination last season of evil megamogul Wallace Mahoney (Adam Arkin). What’s a guy gotta do to redeem himself?
Annalise hates Frank’s guts. Will she ever take him back?
That’s completely up to her. Frank desperately wants and needs her forgiveness. He’s been destroying himself over his connection to the death of her baby for the last 10 years. Something died in him the day that happened. That’s why he’s so far down the rabbit hole. Now he’s doing everything he can to ingratiate himself and make Annalise and Bonnie happy. That’s why he killed Bonnie’s father. He’s treating murder as a good deed. He wants to make things right.
Let’s say he succeeds in that. Can he really just stroll back into the courtroom one day like nothing ever happened?
The cat’s out of the bag. Frank is completely exposed. Annalise and Bonnie always had an idea of what he’s capable of, but now they know for sure. So even if he does attempt a crack at a normal facade—if he put on a suit and went back to court—his true being is still lurking underneath. [Laughs] It would be so interesting to see him trying to keep up appearances. All his jury tampering and planting of evidence gives him a sense of purpose and a sense of value. He’s likes being good at that stuff.
Are there lines you can’t cross? Can Frank push the audience too far or is he a kindred spirit with Dexter Morgan, Walter White and Tony Soprano—the kind of bad guy who can do no wrong with the fans?
Frank definitely falls in a category with those characters. They’re all guys who were trying to balance life with the voices they heard in their heads. But, yeah, I think it’s very possible for Frank to push the audience beyond what they’ll accept. Misguided love can only take you so far.
When Frank went incognito, you gave yourself a shave and a buzz cut on camera. Discuss.
I had one take. No rehearsal. No option for screwups. The whole thing was way more intense than I had anticipated. Then I had the stupid idea to go into hiding. At a kickoff party for the new season, I said to [executive producer] Pete Nowalk, “How about I stay out of sight so this new look will be a big reveal on air?” He said, “Great! Let’s do it!” The next morning I woke up going, “What the hell have I done? Now I can’t go anywhere for three months!”
You’ve also been isolated from the rest of the cast since the end of last season. How’s that been?
Horrible! I’ve really, really missed everybody and I’ve felt very lonely. Not gonna lie. It’s been a difficult season.
Let’s play shrink. What exactly is Frank’s problem?
I fight hard to make it clear he’s not a sociopath or a psychopath, because those diagnoses would give him an excuse, and his behavior cannot be excused. He’s a monster, yet he knows the notion of right and wrong and feels a tremendous amount of guilt for the things he does. And his heart is typically in the right place. He’s a case study, that’s for sure.
Of course, it’s all relative on HTGAWM!
Exactly. Everybody’s bad and kinda crazy. We’re all bound by our sins. It’s a fantasy world, and our audience appreciates that. [Laughs] It’s nice to tune in and see people who are more damaged than you are.
How to Get Away With Murder, Thursdays, 10/9c, ABC