A Cocktail Convo with Matt Czuchry & Emily VanCamp

Flatlining patients! Romantic Betrayals! GAS EXPLOSIONS! Ohhhhh yes, the drama at Chastain is back! Season three of The Resident finally drops tonight (8PM ET on FOX). The show’s sexiest stars, Emily VanCamp and Matt Czuchry chilled with The Cocktail and gave us some insight into what’s going down this year.

The hospital is under new ownership, so I asked if this means no more incestuous hospital romances or boardroom back biting. Just a focus on medicine and teaching viewers how to eat healthy and take care of themselves. Emily says I’m a little off base. “No. It couldn’t be further from the truth!”

This One Begins Where The Last One Ends

Emily tried to get me up to speed without spilling any spoilers. “We pick up on the first episode and sort of answer what happened on the cliffhanger of season two, with Jesse and Nic’s dad. What happened there. We learn that right off the bat. The first episode is about that, and how everyone’s dealing with that. There’s an explosion.”

Because, of course there is. It wouldn’t be a drama without an explosion. It looks like Conrad’s gonna find himself staring death in the face (again!) while trying to save a patient and his fearless co-workers refusing to give up on him. I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but I really think he’ll survive.

Money Changes Everything

When I joked with Matt and Em about just focusing on medicine, it turns out I wasn’t far off.  This season sees new management coming to Chastain, and they’re putting profits over patients.

“We also have this Red Rock Medical Group that comes in, and represents money taking over hospitals, and their aim is the bottom line, rather than patients,” Matt told me. “So putting profits over patients. That’s one of our thematic elements as well, that we address right away at the beginning.” Emily joined in saying “and a huge issue obviously for Conrad and Nic because they care so deeply about their patients and hate seeing all this happening. So we sort of go on our own little journey. A quest for answers as well. So yeah, lots going on.”

Matt’s exited for the characters’ journey. “Nic and Conrad going on this hunt. We’re addressing the system and pulling back the curtain on all the things that are good and bad. We do that this season with profits over patients in corporatized medicine.”

That’s not a fiction storyline, and the show hopes to pull back the curtain on the darker side of for-profit healthcare.

Social Studies

The Resident as a show, and Matt in particular, have a very, very, strong social media following. I asked how that affects the way they interact with fans. Turns out, Matt isn’t on any social platforms, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t appreciate his fans.

“I think it’s felt like almost a grassroot thing in terms of you’ve got two people and they tell three people and then they watch the show. I don’t know if I wanna watch the show. They watch it, lthey love it, they tell three more people. And I think you see that online. Passionate, loyal fan base, and that’s why we’re back for a third season.” Emily loves the social love too. “Yeah you do definately see it online. Lovely lovely fans.”

23 & Me

We’re gonna get a lot from the Conrad and the Chastain Gang this season. FOX ordered 23 episodes, which is a lot of work for the cast and crew, and increasingly rare. “It always keeps you on your toes,” Emily said. “It’s no joke shooting 23 episodes of television.” But the Chastain family has become just that, a family! ” I think we’ve definitely  found a groove with each other. I mean we all get along extremely well. We’re away from our families and stuff so having each other is a beautiful thing. It doesn’t always work out that way that you have such an incredible group of people to work with, so we’re extremely lucky in that respect.”

And Matt sees the extra workload as a blessing from the TV gods. “I do think that speaks to the loyal fans that we have. We saw that in season two, a little tick up in the ratings. I think it’s been one of those things. We started with 14 episodes mid-season. Then we went last season as a Fall show with 23 and we’re doing 23 this year. That’s really rare these days and that speaks to the fans.” “It’s a long haul. And it’s rare nowadays.” Emily said.

And that’s especially true in an age where less is more. “With so much content out there that are doing ten episodes, 13 episodes, and with cable and streaming there’s so much to watch. So the fact that we’re coming back for a thrid season, again, is a credit to the fans.”

The Critic’s Cocktail Recommendation

I don’t like needles, but I do like shots! So let’s pour a couple ounces of Patron, salt and lime optional.

Cheers!

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