Bravo Team member Clay Spenser’s fate in “SEAL Team” was the biggest cliffhanger at the end of season five, especially after it was announced that actor Max Thieriot would star in the new drama “Fire. Country” for CBS.

Now that “SEAL Team” season six is ​​streaming on Paramount+, we know that Clay survived the ambush in Mali but is now facing a tough rehab from serious injuries. That means Thieriot is starring in two shows at the same time this fall, carrying a massive workload as he continues to play one of “SEAL Team’s” most beloved characters while taking on a very complicated character on “Fire. Country”.

“Fire Country” premieres October 7, 2022 and airs Friday nights at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CBS between “SWAT” and “Blue Bloods,” while new episodes of “SEAL Team” air Sundays on Paramount +.

The new show is based on an idea by Thieriot, who grew up in Northern California fire country. CBS loved his pitch and put him in touch with legendary producer Jerry Bruckheimer (“Top Gun: Maverick”), whose company has produced a string of hit TV series, including all of the “CSI” shows.” Without a Trace”, “Cold Case” and “Lucifer”.

Thieriot plays Bode Donovan, who is serving time for theft and agrees to join an inmate firefighting program. If he succeeds, he will shorten his prison term and regain his life. Bode accepts the program, but things immediately take a turn when he is sent to a different camp than the one he signed up for the staff.

Bode was sent to his hometown, a place he left in disgrace. He changed his name and never planned to return. His father (Billy Burke, “The Twilight Saga”) and mother (Diane Farr, “Numb3rs”) have prominent jobs in local fire organizations, and Bode has a complicated relationship with them and all the friends he has. left behind.

“Fire Country” has all the procedural disaster-of-the-week content you’d expect from a high-flying CBS show, but the hidden secrets and family drama bring an element of “Yellowstone” to the proceedings. After seeing the first two episodes, the series looks like a surefire hit.

Thieriot called to tell Military.com about “Fire Country” and “SEAL Team.”

The big news this season on “SEAL Team” is that while Clay survived his injuries from the mission in Mali, his right leg was amputated below the knee, and his story this season focuses on recovery. It turns out that this kind of story had been discussed for a long time.

“The things I was able to do this season with ‘SEAL Team’ were really great,” Thieriot said. “We always try to focus on the struggles that people actually go through in the military. It’s a big story that we’ve been talking about for years. This year felt like a good opportunity for me to do that.”

Killing Clay Spenser would have made the transition easier for Thieriot, but he wanted to tell the SEAL’s story this season, even if things got complicated. “Midway through the season, when I was juggling story writing and working with the writers room on ‘Fire Country’ and editing the pilot, all of a sudden, ‘SEAL Team’ was really picking up.” , Thieriot said. . “I was like, ‘Have I over-committed?’ There was a lot to wear.”

Max Thieriot SEAL Team

“The easy way out would have been for Clay to die in the explosion,” he continued. “I’m really glad everyone is okay with not taking the easy way out and really investing in continuing these characters’ arcs.”

Thieriot went to CBS with his idea for “Fire Country” shortly after registering it with the Writers Guild of America in April 2020. Less than 2 and a half years later, a show aired. A TV creator’s first project can take half a decade or more to get into production. Part of that incredibly quick turnaround is down to the quality of the concept, but part of it comes from CBS knowing how their viewers reacted to Thieriot’s performance on “SEAL Team.”

The inspiration for the show is personal for Thieriot.

“I grew up in a small town in northern California, about 1,000 people, where a lot of my friends do this job,” he said. “To me, it’s funny, because you’re surrounded by things that obviously seem like normal life to you. When I started telling people about this inmate firefighter program, they were shocked to hear about it. , ‘What do you mean, there are inmates fighting fires?’” That’s when I realized that this thing I grew up around wasn’t really normal.

“I also love the small town aspect of the show,” he continued. “I was a big fan of the show ‘Friday Night Lights’ and how all of these stories were so intertwined. It’s so true when you grow up in a small town. I come home, and I know everything everyone, and everyone knows everything that’s going on with everyone’s life, which can be good and bad.”

Jules Latimer Jordan Calloway Max Thieriot Fire Country

The fire effects in the first two episodes are impressive, but Thieriot says we should expect the series to be a “blaze of the week” series.

“Things get crazier and crazier as we fit into this world and this city,” he said. “Incidents are great because Cal Fire is an all-hazards service. As the season progresses, the things we respond to aren’t always fires. Calls really run the gamut. There’s so much to play with and so many things that we can possibly show. It’s almost like the hardest part of doing the show is that the scope of what Cal Fire does is so big that you’re trying to choose which one to do. It’s a good problem to have.

“I’m really grateful for what CBS has allowed us to do with ‘Fire Country.’ I think audiences these days really like to connect with these characters and watch their arcs and watch them evolve over time and there’s definitely no shortage of that on the show, so I think the journey gonna be really cool.

So the good news for “SEAL Team” fans is that it looks like Thieriot is sticking around to play Clay Spenser for at least the rest of the season on Paramount+.

The even better news for Thieriot fans is that he has created “Fire Country”, a very promising show and which CBS will air for free on Friday nights. With any luck in the ratings department, Thieriot might be able to play two big roles at the same time for a few years to come.

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