‘Supernatural’s Rob Benedict: Chuck Has ‘Met His Match in Amara’

Katie Yu/The CW
Supernatural -- " All In The Family" -- SN1121a_0285.jpg -- Pictured: Rob Benedict as Chuck Shurley -- Photo: Katie Yu/The CW -- © 2016 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

God has returned to Supernatural.

After seasons of speculation, the long-running CW drama confirmed in last week’s episode, “Don’t Call Me Shurley,” that Chuck (Rob Benedict) was not actually a prophet of God—rather, he was God himself.

Chuck made the reveal to Metatron (Curtis Armstrong), and the duo debated Chuck’s absence, the danger of God’s sister Amara (Emily Swallow), and the Winchesters’ role in what’s going down. At the end of the hour, Chuck reunited with Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles), and they were stunned to realize his true identity.

But what comes next? We spoke with Benedict about finally getting to showcase Chuck’s true power, God vs. Amara, and more.

At what point did you know, for sure, that Chuck was God?
There were rumblings about it after Season 5, and I mean, I think that was always [series creator] Eric Kripke’s plan [before his departure]. He called me in and said, “You know, I think Chuck is God, that’s what that sort of was supposed to mean. But let the fans interpret it however they want to.” And then slowly, this was an idea that a lot of people were floating around.

And then when it came back last season, in the 200th episode it kind of hinted again to that, and winked at the fans, because that’s kind of the thoughts that they’d been having. And then I knew that this season, because of the darkness, I heard some kind of whispers God might be back and it might be me, but none of it was guaranteed until like January of this year. Robbie Thompson, the writer of last week’s episode, called me and said, “You know, this is happening.” And that’s when I knew for sure. I was like, “Oh, great!” It was such a sweet surprise to find out that I was coming back, and that it was gonna have a lot… Because obviously God has a lot of explaining to do! (Laughs.)

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What was it like filming the last episode as Chuck revealed himself to Metatron and then went through his mini-breakdown, of sorts?
It was awesome. I was so excited about that episode. It really was unlike most things you see on network TV. It was like a one-act play with me and Curtis. And I was so excited. I’d met Curtis a couple of times at conventions, but we’d never worked together, and I knew he was great, and I’ve always been a fan of his. As an actor, it’s kind of a dream to get that much stuff, and really be able to chew it up. That part of it was great, and it was going through the process—it was honestly one of the best experiences I’ve ever had on a set. It really was. From really going there and going more into Chuck and then finally unleashing a little bit of the God part of Chuck; to be able to sing at the end of the episode, and all that stuff was really terrific, really fun to do.

Chuck approached Sam and Dean at the very end of the last episode, and said they needed to talk. What can you share about that reunion and what that relationship will look like going forward?
I think the first thing that needs to be done is that he’s got to get their trust again, and convince them that he is what he says he is. So that’s kind of the first thing. And then, I think we’ll see a couple of scenes with him and the boys that’s—they’ve got to have a sit-down. And they’ve got to talk about where he’s been, and what’s going on, and why. And you know, they’ve got a lot of catch-up to do. (Laughs.) And then, after that, it’s about this common goal of trying to defeat Amara.

How much are we actually seeing of his explanation to the boys? Given how much is going on, is that mostly off-screen?
No, no. There’s a lot that’s portrayed on screen. There’s big conversations coming up that you get to see. The writing in these next few scripts is also great, just like last week. And no, the stakes are so high right now that, so the conversations go deep, and there’s some big fires to put out. So we get to see it. We get to, for the most part, we get to see the ones that we want to see, so. Which is great, it’s really fun to play.

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What is the dynamic between Chuck/God and the Winchesters like given their resentment about his absence and his frustration towards some of their actions?
The dynamic is very much like absentee father and troubled sons. And I think that relationship has always been there between Chuck and the boys; I think there were elements of that during my first run on the show, but it goes deeper here. And I think it’s more obvious because of who we know that Chuck is now. And we get to dive into that a little bit more. But it’s definitely like father-son. It really is like a father who’s been gone and now he’s gotta explain why.

Given everything that’s going on with Amara, whenever that confrontation does happen, what can you say about the dynamic they have?
On a human level, it’s brother and sister. It really is a dysfunctional brother-sister relationship. I almost feel like she’s a little more the big sister, and she’s kicked my sandcastle over more times that I can recount. And so, I think that’s sort of the dynamic coming into it, but obviously on a greater conceptual level, we’re dealing with light and dark, and the two sides of the same coin. So the thing about it that’s scary is that God is God, but he’s met his match. She’s just as powerful.

So it really is this sort of… It’s a pretty heavyweight fight! If I could be so bold to say, because I’m such a lightweight! (Laughs.) It’s a heavyweight fight, and it’s between these two beings.

Does he have any delusions that he can reach her, in a way? Or does he know that there is no reaching her?
Honestly, I don’t think he’d be back if he didn’t think there was a way to either reach her or stop her. But yeah, I mean I think there’s a fear. I think, you know, there’s anger. But he’s back because the stakes are very high, and I don’t think he’d be back if he didn’t think he could reach her in some way. Or at least stop her.

What are his interactions like with the other entities out there who have been wondering what God has been up to?
I can’t say specifics, but definitely there are a lot of fun moments coming up between, interactions with him and some of the other characters that people are familiar with. And you know, there’s lots to play there. There’s lots going on with everybody. The idea that Lucifer is possessing Castiel is heavy and complicated. And like you said, I have a lot of explaining to do. And I think God has made some enemies. Because he’s been such an absentee father. And here he is, inside the body of hapless Chuck, you know? (Laughs.)

So it creates a really interesting dynamic. But yeah, it really is like he has to come back home and he’s gotta, he’s got a lot of battles to fight. A lot of fires to put out.

Supernatural, Wednesdays, 9/8c, The CW.