Mehcad Brooks is a superhuman drive of nature, no matter Supergirl and his position as James “Jimmy” Olsen and The Guardian. The star has taken a comic book character and fleshed him out in an entirely masculine and highly effective means, taking this iconic character in a brand new path.
Brooks is a type of competent multi-hyphenates, a uncommon breed of human who can truly do a number of inventive issues very, very nicely. Appearing, singing and even modeling – his background – all completed with nice flourish and accomplishment.
A part of the USC “Trojan mafia,” an affectionate time period given to these loyal Trojans who matriculate via the faculty, Brooks discovered the filmmaking business and labored arduous, auditioning and making use of his pure bodily prowess which gained him elements as an athlete in a number of roles.
He was so good wanting that he additionally snagged a coveted stint as a Calvin Klein mannequin, and has created a head-turning debut as a singer underneath the identify KING GVPSV.
He’s additionally in the upcoming Tyler Perry movie, No one’s Idiot, with Tiffany Haddish, Whoopi Goldberg and Missi Pyle, to be launched on November 2.
Since the present premiered in 2015, the present has percolated and adopted the tradition on many hot-button subjects, as Brooks’ character has reworked right into a vigilante referred to as The Guardian in Nationwide Metropolis.
The Supergirl actor spoke with us at size about how the present parallels the political times, and how Supergirl is forward of the curve on TV because it brings the first transgender superhero (Nia Nal performed by Nicole Maines) on board for season 4. Nia joins James as a reporter at CatCo Worldwide Media, working with Kara Danvers (Melissa Benoist).
Monsters and Critics: Supergirl season four is quickly coming again. It was a really dramatic finish to Season Three. I do know you’ll be able to’t give spoilers however what are you able to inform me about Jimmy, your position, and how issues are progressing?
Mehcad Brooks: I can. The followers know we left off with Jimmy popping out as The Guardian, unmasking as this hero, and there’s some… Let’s say, the tradition considerably receives in that in a approach that’s actually sudden to him. He offers with what’s going on… in the actual world when it comes to, nicely let’s say this, utilizing extraterrestrials from outer area as an allegory for immigrants and the immigrant dialogue that we’re having now in the US. Issues will get slightly heated and we delve closely into that.
Additionally, there’s a whole lot of on a regular basis heroics that occur with James, as a result of we have now a president that claims that the media is the enemy of the individuals. And let’s name it what it’s. Assembly that lie and that propaganda head on, we will show that the media is heroic by telling the fact and exposing the fact.
That is virtually like he [James] turns into this two-part hero the place we reclaim that fourth department of presidency via journalism… and additionally the crime preventing doesn’t cease both.
M&C: How do you see this series … a lot greater than only a DC Comedian yarn as you stated, it’s analogous to a number of what’s going on in the tradition. How do you view your work and what are your hopes so far as the series lasting?
Mehcad Brooks: Once I first joined the series, I feel we didn’t have a discernible id. I feel we have been looking for that. And since then we’ve gotten new management and I feel they put their heads along with Greg Berlanti and Peter Ross.
I’ve by no means been extra proud to be on a present, truthfully. We actually are tackling points which are at the forefront of our social consciousness. And for me, there’s nothing extra essential that we will do right now as a result of we’re in a very low-level of human consciousness proper now.
I’d like to assume that our writers’ room is fairly woke. I feel that our actors are fairly woke. I like to assume that Warner Brothers takes social consciousness into their determination making and I’ve the precise instance of that.
Whether or not it’s inclusion or gender equality or us writing in the first trans superhero, we’re actually breaking down lots of partitions and/or glass ceilings. And I couldn’t consider a extra essential means to spend my time and my life.
It’s turn out to be greater than only a present to me, it’s turn into a means to truly have an effect on the tradition. It’s woken up the activist in me in some methods, it’s made me a greater individual in some methods.
As James grows as a personality, I develop as a human and vice versa. I feel that our writers’ room could be very open to listening to who we’re as individuals and what’s essential to us as individuals and they incorporate it into the characters. That, in and of itself, it’s subversion at its greatest, proper?
I feel we’re on this day and age when we’ve an government department that’s on the market. And that’s disheartening.
My mother’s a journalist. I take it actually personally when this actuality TV stars tells that work that the media, that journalism, that the free press, one thing that’s helped construct this democracy and maintain this democracy collectively, that it’s the enemy of the individuals, the enemy of the state. I take that personally.
I take a look at the 30-plus years that my mother has put in, exposing the fact, serving to minorities, serving to ladies, serving to overturn dying row instances and taxes that have been illegal.
I’ve seen this first-hand and I’ve seen what good journalism can do. It will possibly maintain democracy collectively. I simply really feel like that is the most essential present that I’ve been part of, by far.
M&C: It’s an incredible reply.
Mehcad Brooks: Thanks.
M&C: That cowl article on The Hollywood Reporter, LeBron James Takes Over Hollywood, and he’s acquired this entire empire now that he’s establishing himself and it’s thrilling. But it additionally seems like it’s a very regressive and harmful time.
Mehcad Brooks: Yeah.
M&C: I do know you bought plenty of flack for a PSA that you simply did again in 2013 for reproductive rights. I needed to know what the fallout was of that, and now with Roe v. Wade in such jeopardy, and should you might proceed your ideas about what’s essential to you, not simply as an actor?
Mehcad Brooks: I really like these questions. It’s a ridiculous circumstance to even have to say ladies’s rights as a result of it ought to simply be human rights. And the proven fact that we’ve already established that Roe v. Wade is the regulation of the land, the incontrovertible fact that we’re nonetheless debating it 40 years later, is mind-boggling.
It’s the definition of regression. As a result of our progress has been regressed by particular curiosity teams, by spiritual fanaticism…There are locations like that in the Center East that you would be able to have your spiritual fanaticism and you’ll be able to lead your nation that means.
I feel these individuals want to take into consideration the place they’re dwelling. You’re dwelling in a democracy, you’re dwelling in a spot that has argued this stuff, has taken them to the Supreme Courtroom and due to the price that ladies have been dropping their lives as a result of they have been nonetheless getting abortions, we determined that it’s the lady’s proper to select.
We determined a very long time in the past. That debate’s over.
To proceed having debates we’ve already determined isn’t solely counter-intuitive and counter-productive. Truthfully, I feel it causes a nationwide safety situation.
What are we going to rehash? What are we going to re-debate now? Are we going to re-debate the Voting Rights Act now? Are we going to re-debate time period limits for the president?
I get that democracies are evolutionary and they’ve to evolve over time however they’ve to evolve in a progressive method. They’ve to evolve in a method that’s congruent with progress, mind, info with empirical knowledge.
So, we have now to transfer in the proper course.
With that stated, no one likes abortions.
No one needs one, proper?
No one’s like, “Oh, well, it’s Thursday. It’s abortion time.”
No one’s saying that. But when it’s going to harm somebody’s life or well being or goals or no matter the case is, it’s none of my enterprise. And if we will simply go by that Republican ideology, the place the authorities stays out of individuals’s enterprise, that ought to be considered one of the first issues. Interval.
I’ve by no means seen such hypocrisy on its face.
M&C: I’m going to do a 180 on you. I really like your music. Texturally, your voice is buttery suede that simply clings. It simply sticks to you in that the majority sensuous means. You’ve gotten a unbelievable voice.
Mehcad Brooks: Oh, thanks very a lot.
M&C: What occurred on Might 20th? Please inform me what was the near-death expertise that impressed the identify of your LP?
Mehcad Brooks: There was. So, Might 20th … It wasn’t only one Might 20th factor. It was a number of Might 20ths in a row.
What occurred was I used to be on [the HBO series] True Blood, on Might 20th. Let’s simply again up somewhat bit. I acquired actually sick, I couldn’t even get away from bed. And all over the place the place blood went harm. My eyelashes harm, it didn’t matter. There was no reprieve from the ache. I didn’t know what was occurring so I stored going to the hospital.
A pair times I handed out, and the entire factor and it went from swine flu to in all probability leukemia to each virus on the planet. The docs couldn’t work out what was going on.
Lastly, earlier that week earlier than Might 20th, they recognized me with a parasite that I obtained in Africa two and a half years earlier than. However I ought to’ve been lifeless as a result of I didn’t get remedy as a result of I didn’t know I had it.
Proper then and there, that’s a miracle and I used to be very grateful and I used to be a medical anomaly.
They flew all these docs in and it actually felt like they have been making an attempt to research me fairly than heal me. I used to be the third case in 12 years and the different two instances died.
With all the medicine I already had in my system that have been pointless, and they added the parasite medicine on prime of that. I had an allergic response and I flatlined, I handed away. I crossed over to the different aspect and I had this actually unimaginable out of the physique, clearly, expertise the place I used to be on this subject of pure potentiality. I used to be the place we go as souls.
Earlier than and after our deaths and there was one factor that was very clear to me, that’s one acutely aware query that you simply ask your self earlier than you let go of all your consciousness, which is, “Did I fulfill the agreement that my soul made with my body? Did I fulfill the agreement that I made with this life before I got here?”
All the cash that I had made, all the success that I had in Hollywood, all the issues that I had, all the people who I helped, all the altruism that was in my coronary heart, all the extremely enjoyable sexual experiences and visceral experiences that I had, no. None of that meant sh**. It was … That was all good, that was all good, and, sure, I used to be glad, I used to be grateful for all this stuff however … It was … There was this very clear, very quiet voice that claims, ‘You didn’t do the music.’
Man. Yeah, you’re proper. I didn’t. And that voice was actually highly effective, very current however quiet. The voice of the universe. And I knew if I ever acquired out of that hospital mattress, that I used to be going to do this.
So, time went on. It took me a very long time to heal from that. I went again to True Blood, shot the final three episodes, and I received out of there.
Did some films, did some exhibits, and the subsequent factor I do know, it’s Might 20th once more, I’m in India and I haven’t finished the music but. I’m sitting with this religious guru and I’m leaving and he says, “Be very careful driving.”
I stated, “Okay, that’s weird. All right.”
And it’s bizarre as a result of I had simply thought that to myself an hour earlier than.
Quick ahead to Might 20th of 2011, I’m sitting on a cease mild in Atlanta and a woman hits me going head-on, 65 miles an hour and I’m going right into a coma.
I had a really comparable expertise. And the similar query popped in my head and the similar reply was, ‘You didn’t do the music.’
However this time it was extra of a dialog, extra of a wake-up name with the universe. I’m like, ‘Oh, you’re reminding me.’ This isn’t simply me figuring some sh** out.
You’re principally having to put issues in my approach to cease me from simply principally permitting my life to occur so I can take management and manifest what’s supposed to occur. Acquired it.”
In order that’s the second I began to understand, Might 20th, 2011. As soon as once more, obtained out of the coma, obtained my sh** again collectively. That was one among the hardest issues I’ve ever had in my life, clearly.
I had to re-learn how to learn, it was dangerous. And I used to be nonetheless on a TV present. I had to simply focus on therapeutic.
By Might 20th, 2012, I nonetheless had not finished music. I used to be simply targeted on why me? At the time, I used to be nonetheless doing that. However Might 20th, 2012, I sat with a religious guru and I had this meditative expertise and, truly, I’ll simply be trustworthy about it. It was an earth drugs, a plant drugs, referred to as ayahuasca.
I drank that and I had an out of physique expertise that was very very similar to the dying expertise and very very similar to the coma. And I went to the similar place, however this time it wasn’t scary. This time I consciously went there to work out what the f*** goes on with my life. And I had the very same expertise. It was, ‘do the music and listen to his voice.’ And it was very clear.
This time I used to be like, ‘Wha-how? Okay, you keep telling me this, how do I do it?’ And it gave me a reputation. It stated, ‘You know this guy, right?’ I used to be like, ‘Yeah.’
‘Talk to him.’ So I did and then after that I received cheated, I received robbed, I acquired laughed at, I obtained walked on, I obtained laughed out of the studio, I employed individuals who laughed at me. I had each expertise you possibly can probably think about that may make anyone wanna give up.
However I simply knew one thing that was past all that was that once I do go to my consciousness once more, at the least from this physique, I by no means need to really feel like I didn’t do one thing I used to be supposed to do.
So I simply labored my ass off, each single day from Might 20th, 2012 till now. And that’s what you hear. Thanks for calling it buttery suede. That’s good to hear.
M&C: You had to know you had an unimaginable voice.
Mehcad’s musical alter-ego is KING GVPSV. Pic credit score: Mehcad Brooks
Mehcad Brooks: Right here’s the factor … I received Justin Bieber’s vocal coach. Mama Jan, she’s superb.
I used to be simply, “What do I do? I gotta figure this out.” I knew the tone of my voice was dope.
The very first thing she advised me was, ‘You can sing, you just don’t know how. You are able to do it, you simply don’t know how. So, I gotta train you how.’
I used to be like, ‘Okay.’
It was extra about taking the time to focus and say, ‘Look, this is a priority to me. This is something that I have to do.’
It’s not one thing that I wanna do to get wealthy or well-known. Fortunately I’ve recognition. I’m not in a spot the place that’s my motivation. My motivation really is the proven fact that, if I might be utterly trustworthy, due to the experiences that I’ve been via, I’ve a sure reference to the universe that I don’t assume most individuals acknowledge that they’ve as properly. And I would like to take that up and do that.
I would like to assist individuals keep in mind how highly effective they’re and who they’re. And I feel one in every of the greatest methods you are able to do that’s by opening up individuals’s ear and their hearts.
M&C: I feel once you’ve had that near-death or a demise expertise and you’ve come again, I feel there’s extra of an urgency, of honesty. I feel that’s definitely coming by means of in the whole lot that you simply’ve informed me on this brief interview that we’ve had.
Mehcad Brooks: Thanks, yeah.
M&C: It feels like your Supergirl household could be very supportive of this.
Mehcad Brooks: You realize what? I couldn’t ask for a extra supportive household. I couldn’t ask for a greater tribe to spend my time with and we’re all like-minded, all of us love one another, all of us help one another, whether or not it’s the ties with the crew, whether or not it’s producers and the writers, everyone is a constructive affect on one another. I’ve to say that’s remarkable on this city. That’s extraordinary.
M&C: Fast, give me the one-minute on this Tyler Perry movie you’ve acquired popping out, No one’s Idiot, with Tiffany Haddish. What’s your position? What do you play?
Mehcad Brooks: Nicely, I can’t inform you an excessive amount of about my position as a result of it’s sort of a secret giveaway factor if I do.
I can inform you that issues are usually not all the time what they appear, I can inform you that it’s one in every of the funniest scripts I’ve ever learn.
I haven’t seen it however I talked to Tyler Perry, I talked to Miss Haddish, I talked to a very good good friend of mine and they each stated, ‘Bring a diaper because it’s that humorous.’
I feel individuals aren’t going to actually anticipate what they see out of me on this one as a result of I began in comedy however I don’t assume lots of people know me from comedy. I get to be slapstick humorous on this one and I actually respect the alternative from Tyler Perry to present that a part of my artistry.
And I simply had a lot enjoyable being a idiot and it’s simply nice. I can’t actually inform you an excessive amount of about the position however I can inform you simply prepare to giggle your ass off, for positive.
Supergirl airs Sunday nights at eight p.m. ET. on The CW