Jackie’s season of sobriety on “Nurse Jackie” in Season 5 is all fans are going to get of her on the wagon for the time being. When Season 6 premieres on Sunday, April 13, Jackie will be in the middle of a relapse that she is keeping from everyone around her.
Zap2it spoke with Adam Ferrara, who plays Jackie’s boyfriend Frank, about how that relapse will affect him and the other characters around her. He also offers a tease of what exciting adventures he has coming up on “Top Gear.”
Zap2it: Do you think Jackie’s relapse was an inevitable turn for her character?
Adam Ferrara: Yeah. Coming from Frank’s point of view, he thought it was all over with. As far as the inevitability of it from a story point, I guess she had to go back. If she gets better, what story are you telling?
How will Frank respond to her relapse, especially since he’s with the police?
Not to give anything away, but Frank doesn’t know there’s a problem. Frank sees the end of drug addiction, being a cop. He sees where it winds up. He’s not that familiar with the process; he’s more dealing with the end result. It was interesting to play him seeing how an addict functions. He really doesn’t see that much about addiction, he just sees the end result of addiction.
Do you think that he’s the type of person who will have patience with Jackie to help her deal with her relapse?
Frank loves her. There’s no doubt he loves her, so he’s going to have patience. He’s lived enough life to know he’s lucky to find someone like Jackie. He’s lucky to find someone he’s attracted to and he has these feelings for again. He’s been married before, he’s got a couple kids, and as life goes on you think, “I’ll never have this again,” and bang, Jackie shows up. I think he’s grateful for that attraction and meeting her, and he does love her.
Do you think he’s the right guy for her?
He loves her. As far as him being the right guy for her, it’s all timing in people’s lives, and this is when they met, so we’ll have to see how it turns out.
How does Frank’s storyline intersect with some of the other characters in the show?
Frank gets an education as far as what it’s like to love a functioning addict, what addiction is and I think he also realizes what good friends Jackie has.
Frank has children of his own, so will we see him create more of a relationship with Jackie’s children, particularly Grace?
Frank very much wants to care for Jackie and be part of Jackie’s life. He’s all in, Frank, and that’s important to him — and not to step on Kevin’s toes as a father. Being a father himself, Frank’s trying to find his place in the picture, and he’s very aware of who the girls’ father is and who the man in that family is, and he’s trying to fit in to where he would fit in in this new phase of their lives.
It seems Jackie is unaware of the ripple effects her relapse is having on those around her.
It’s a world where the addicted character is the center of this world, and Frank is illustrating one part of this woman’s life that she’s trying to get under control. I don’t think he knows how out of control she was or can get, and the way he reacts to that is kind of unsettling for him because he’s used to being in control. He’s a police sergeant. He dances this line of what he can control and what he can’t control, and that’s what’s revealed. That’s one of the reasons I like playing Frank. He tries to apply what he thinks he can control, and it blows up in his face that not him but not anyone can control an addict.
Season 7 was recently announced, so is there any new facet of Frank you’d like to see explored going forward?
I’m still learning quite a lot about him. He’s a fun guy to play because just when you think, “OK, I think I know how he’s going to reply to this,” you read something and you go, “Oh, I didn’t think of that.” It’s exciting to read the scripts and play the guy. I don’t know where they’re going to take him.
Since you also have been shooting “Top Gear,” can you tease anything exciting you have coming up on that?
I had to drive in and up and out of the Grand Canyon in a Jeep Brute, which is about over $100,000 Jeep. I drove it through the Colorado River, so that’s going to be a lot of fun coming up. And we just did logging trucks in Washington state. I drove over 100,000 pounds of logs in a logging trailer down a mountain. I’m happy to say I made it. And I just raced up Pike’s Peak in a Mercedes AMG wagon.
I want to see some nods in “Nurse Jackie” to Frank being a huge car aficionado.
The first time I was there, when I found out I was a cop, I read the scene where Frank drives Jackie home. I get the job, the first thing I do is go over to the prop master and I go, “Can I get a P71 Crown Vic, rear wheel drive? Because if Frank gets upset, he can just burn the tires and express his emotions through that.” And they go, “No, you get a Chevy. Front wheel drive. It ain’t that kind of show.”
“Nurse Jackie” Season 6 premieres on Showtime on April 13 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.