As Sheriff Barrett Bishop Jr. in the most recent Supernatural episode, The Memory Remains, Steve Boyle had the chance to play a character that at first seems kooky (taxidermy in a PD, really?), then seems like the bad guy – but in the end, is someone out to do good. Steve has previously appeared in The Listener, Murdoch Mysteries, Republic of Doyle and a memorable turn as Sonny Boy on Queer As Folk.
Tell us about your character, Sheriff Barrett Bishop.
Oh geez! Sheriff Barrett “Barry” Bishop Jr. was a real joy and a lot of fun to play. To be honest, I wasn’t fully aware that he was from Wisconsin, when I landed the role and had to do a little research before the first day of filming. Sheriff Barrett “Barry” Bishop is the heir to the Bishop Meat Empire “Billhook Meats.” He took over after his father’s death in 1997 but decided to become a face of the community, as the sheriff, and his step brother Pete runs the day to day operations on his behave.
What resonated the most with you while playing Bishop?
I think the fact that there’s more to Barry than just a shiny badge, resonated with me. The fact that there was a quirkiness, and an oddity to his character, and yet at the same time, fairly simple with a genuine sweetness, played well against his rough and tumble outer image. And the beard of all beards!! ;) I think a lot of times the general population tend to forget or don’t realize that those who wear a badge, and those that wear a uniform, have a life beyond the uniform and are real people too. The creativity of the writers to include the whole taxidermy world, LOL at his precinct, and the pride, passion and excitement he gets from being a damn good taxidermist, (or so he thinks) was such an interesting take for me. Being different is just more fun! Period.
What was the funniest thing to happen while filming?
Hands down that has to be the joking, the lightness, the candour and the fun that both Jared and Jensen bring to set. That also goes for the director, right down to the entire Supernatural cast and family. The joking and improvising during a rehearsal, or some spontaneous improvised action or line during a serious scene, just allows for all to relax and enjoy and makes it feel very family like while being there on set. LOL After Pete gets shot and while telling the two brothers to go, that this here is my legacy, both Jared and Jensen looked at each other, and Jensen while holding the frozen pork chop to his face (without hesitation says) “I’m taking this with me” LOL.
What did you enjoy most about being on the set of Supernatural?
The talent, professionalism, and family-like atmosphere the whole cast and crew of Supernatural displayed. I find it very inspiring to work with a team or a group of people that understand what it takes to make something survive and to be successful. It was very evident that the whole Supernatural family understood how to conduct themselves daily and how important their fans are to them. Really was such a joy to be there, right from the driver, to the crew, to the cast and the director/producers.
If you could return to Supernatural, would your character be a hunter, a demon or an angel?
UFF DA! I could go many ways on this question. Ultimately, I think it would be safe to say if Barry returned on Supernatural, he would be a hunter. Even though Sheriff Barry Bishop had a dark family history, he did demonstrate he’s one of the good guys. And let’s not forget he had a legacy to tend to. So, the real question is, who would he be hunting???
Do you have any upcoming projects to share?
Yes, I’d love to share upcoming projects with you. I am very proud of a couple films I have surfacing shortly. I filmed a unique short film in Tijuana, Mexico, called The Bounty by Brent Cote. Secondly, I also have an experimental project with Neill and Oats.
Editor’s Note: In full disclosure, one line from this interview has been excised as per the CW publicity department.