When Amy Acker joins “Grimm” on Friday (Feb. 10) as Lena, a black widow spider who must kill men and devour their insides to stay young, there’s a little bit of her in the role. But it’s not in the nefarious sense.
Like any performer, Acker wanted to know more about her character’s motivation. And with Lena, Acker dons a new disguise every time she goes out to kill. But she was curious why, so she consulted EP David Greenwalt.
Acker explains she asked Greenwalt, “What reason does she have for changing her look. Is it because she doesn’t want to be recognized or she can’t deal with herself doing what she’s doing?”
“He was like, ‘Yeah, it’s because she doesn’t want to be recognized.’ But then he’s says, ‘But I kind of like the other thing too.’ So I sort of added a little of that into [the role],” she adds.
Acker can have these discussions with Greenwalt because they have a long history together. The two worked alongside each other for years on the popular series “Angel.” Acker played Winifred ‘Fred’ Burkle while Greenwalt produced the series.
She explains that what drew her to the role was the complicated nature of the black widow.
“I’ve played some interesting characters, but nothing quite this complex…the spider aspect adds a different dimension to it,” she says.
As for her character’s murderous desires, Acker explains this is nothing new for her, saying “I’ve killed a lot in my past…acting-wise at least.” But she notes that her “Grimm” character is different, especially when compared to Kelly Peyton on “Alias.”
“On ‘Alias’ I was just really mean and killed people,” she says. “But here…there was a struggle…She doesn’t just want to go out and kill people. And it’s kind of this thing like she doesn’t have a choice.”
Acker’s episode of “Grimm” airs Friday (Feb. 10) at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.