‘SEAL Team’s David Boreanaz on Jason’s Perspective & ‘Connection’ With Mandy
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for the Season 3 finale of SEAL Team, “No Choice in Duty.”]
SEAL Team didn’t end its third season with the episode it had planned — the 20th was the last one that had been completed before production shut down — but it did have a moment some fans have been waiting for.
Bravo Team got one step closer to the terrorist leader they’re after — the son of one of Jason’s (David Boreanaz) past targets — when they got eyes on the courier for his meds. Then, in the episode’s final moments, Jason checked in on Mandy (Jessica Paré) and kissed her. And what comes next will have to wait until next season.
And there will be a Season 4, though TV Insider spoke with Boreanaz about the finale before the series had been renewed. (“I just know we’re blessed to have done what we have done, and you just go from there,” the star and executive producer said at the time.)
Here, Boreanaz breaks down the finale and teases where it was leading for Episodes 21 and 22.
I was beginning to wonder when the show was going to go there with Jason and Mandy but first, before that kiss, they had that great conversation about how the job has changed her when it comes to losing CIs. As someone who has experience being out there in war and with loss, what does Jason see in her regarding that?
David Boreanaz: A strong connection, obviously, and also one where Jason can reflect what she’s putting out there. He understands that, so it’s definitely a dance between the two of them and it has been and we know that. It’s not any secret that the two of us have a past. He’s there for her but he also tries to philosophize the whole situation because he is very much into this ignore and override attitude and it’s really not until 21 that we see something that majorly happens with him and Cerberus that could change his perspective for a long time.
And of course there’s the kiss. Why is now the right time for both to explore that side of the relationship? Because it doesn’t seem like they could ever just be casual at this point.
You’re seeing a connection that these two characters have and have had, so I don’t think there’s any casualness to it, but again, I will say that there is comfort in pain and the two of them just identify with each other and it’s a big moment. We didn’t expect this to be the season ender, of course. It just kind of happened, so that leads to some big decisions in what would’ve been 22.
Before the kiss, Jason says he’s “good.” Is he, in all aspects of his life and accepting what the future may hold for him when it comes to operating, or does he just want to be?
He’s good with the situation that’s going down in front of him. He understands the need she may have and the two of them are both there for each other. As far as the future is concerned, those questions [would have been] answered in 21.
Jason had that conversation with Ray about his operating and family lives. Can Jason ever maintain that same kind of balance?
Who knows? That question is just going to hang out there and we’ll see what happens down the line. If there is a Season 4, potentially, if there is a Season 5, Season 6, whatever, those are the types of questions the character can’t answer right now.
We had that moment with the team near the end, and Jason was even a bit optimistic with their chances tracking the courier. How does he feel about the team when he knows that things can be changing?
Jason’s not handling that whole departure of team members too well, but there is a moment where he sees where Clay is and he understands he’d be a great operator and he’d be a great Bravo 1, and that’s a choice that Clay has to make. Without saying too much, that’s where we were leading to, which reveals itself in Episodes 21 and 22.
Speaking of those two, we had that great scene earlier in the season when Jason sent Clay to Cop Redding.
It was a fun scene to do. That was Max’s directing debut [on the show]. He was really open to letting it unfold. It’s a throwback to the pilot in a lot of ways. This kid comes along, he’s cocky, he’s going to be chosen and he’s picked. I gotta watch out for the way he does things. I’m defending him and Jason says, “Jesus, now I’m finding out you’re taking off and you want to go to STA-21.” That doesn’t fit well for him at that time.
So the anger comes out first, and instead of playing the anger, we really wanted to play the hurt and “you just let me down” attitude. Where do you go from there? Jason had to put him somewhere in his place, and it was fueled by anger, but also disappointment because he sees so much in Clay. He sees himself when he was that young, so he recognizes how good of a leader he can be. That just crumbles in front of him. It’s more like disappointment and “Why would you do that? Why would you throw that out the window?”
Looking back on Jason’s journey this season, what moments stand out to you?
Michael Watkins directed the episode when I went back to the storage facility to get some things. It’s a completely private moment that you see with this character and looking back and he has the book and sees his wife. He’s really in a state of trouble right there. It was a highly emotional moment for the character, and it really hit hard. I loved that moment. Just fun to play and it was very raw and intuitive and there was no stress behind it.
SEAL Team, Season 4, TBA, CBS