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Jay Lycurgo: “The Bastard Son and the Devil Himself left a few scars”

Jay Lycurgo and Emilien Vekemans tell us about the hefty fight coordination that went into Netflix series The Bastard Son and the Devil Himself

The Bastard Son and the Devil Himself cast

There are plenty of magical powers in Netflix series The Bastard Son and the Devil Himself, and most of them can do a lot of damage. The drama series, based on Half Bad by Sally Green, follows a group of teenagers who discover abilities that put themselves and those around them at real risk and the forces trying to stop them.

Jay Lycurgo plays the lead, Nathan Byrn, a young orphan who grew up as part of a rural family. All is well until he comes of age, and then The Council of Fairborn Witches become very interested in him because he’s the child of one of the most evil magic-wielders ever. And you thought your family was complicated!

Lycurgo chatted to us about the fantasy series, along with co-star Emilien Vekemans, who plays fellow witch Gabriel. They discuss all the fake fighting and training that went on behind the scenes, sculpting their backstories, and Lycurgo tells us about why he’s excited for Arrowverse fans to see Titans season 4.

The Digital Fix: The Bastard Son and the Devil Himself is more violent than I expected. Can you tell me a little bit about how into the stunt work and fight scenes you guys got to do?

Jay Lycurgo: That’s a huge shout out to Julian Spencer, who did the stunt coordination on it from day one. The Fairborns had gotten practice and we got people from the army to actually teach them. Then for me, it was just a lot of fake fighting. So I think I got it a bit easier. From the beginning, we worked with the same people that were in the series, and then on the day, which was actually really good practice, Julian sometimes just made something up on the spot.

Emilien Vekemans: He does it for real, yeah.

JL: So then on the day, we would just have to learn it and do it. I think everything was really safe. I mean, there was a few bumps but you know what, we were lucky enough to get out on the other side. It’s safe and sound, but there’s definitely a few scars that stayed.

Jay Lycurgo in The Bastard Son and the Devil Himself

Jay, the series is quite romantic as well, especially between yourself and Annalise. What was it like establishing that emotional through-line for the audience?

JL: The emotional through line for the audience. I mean, I guess you, you get to see it, really. With Annalise, when I think about it was just really natural, and everything felt really real, to be honest. And I think for the audience, it feels really real man. I don’t really know. it’s just pretty nice.

Emilien, your character comes in with this huge history and backstory, and also this greater understanding of the magic world that the other characters are entering. How deep into that backstory did you get in researching the character?

EV: It was really important in Gabriel to really understand where the character comes from, in terms of his personality, and the way he is, his reacting to other people and to emotions and things like that. So yeah, it was a really important part.

It was nice, because with Joe Barton, who co-wrote the scripts, I could really talk with him about that, and he could give some information about it so we could recreate something I hope that would feel really real to the audience.

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Jay, you’ll be returning to our screens soon as Tim Drake in Titans season 4. What can you tell us about the upcoming season?

JL: I think what’s really nice with Titans season 4 is that it’s more of an ensemble. I think Greg Walker, the showrunner, heard from all the fans that we wanted more of a family unit and I think what’s really nice is, and you see this in the little snippets, but, we start in a bowling alley and I think that’s such a perfect way to show where we’re at.

Joseph Morgan playing Brother Blood is just absolutely exceptional in the show, and what’s also fun is that we’ve got two parts of it. So the first six come out first, and then what’s even more exciting is that you get the second part in the new year. It’s so different and all the characters go on such amazing journeys but more importantly, they’re together for it. So yeah, man, I’m super excited. After the trailer dropped, I was like, ‘Oh, OK’.

The Devil and the Bastard Son is available on Netflix October 28.