Andre Braugher: The Puppet Masters on ‘Last Resort’ Are Still a Mystery

Andre Braugher in "Last Resort" (Photo: Bob D'Amico/ABC)

When the “Last Resort” returns Thursday night, the crew of the Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine Colorado, which went out to make a repair in the last episode under the command of Lieutenant Grace Shepard (Daisy Betts), is attacked by an unknown force unlike anything they’ve ever seen. Confusion reigns — as does the need to fight back — but the question remains: Who is the enemy?

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“Right now I don’t think we [know who the bad guys are],” Andre Braugher, who stars as Captain Marcus Chaplin, tells “I suspect even the Secretary of Defense does not fully wrap his head around [the fact] that even he is somehow being played by someone. Perhaps it’s the president, perhaps it’s some other part of our administration, perhaps it’s the puppet masters, I don’t know. But right now it doesn’t look to me like anyone has the complete story.”

The action began on “Last Resort” when Chaplin and his XO Sam Kendal (Scott Speedman) refused a questionable order to fire nuclear weapons on Pakistan. They, along with the crew of the Colorado, are now considered by the U.S. government to have committed treason and the Secretary of Defense has been sent out to the island, where they are holed up, to try to negotiate with them.

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But negotiations don’t go well, because Chaplin wants a public trial in order that all the secrets are revealed, which will give him and his men, many of who truly don’t understand the ramifications of their actions, a fair shake. But the government, as is true in most conspiracy stories, wants to sweep what they consider to be treasonous acts under the rug.

“At this point, Chaplin wants to give his crew, as well as his officers, an opportunity to surrender the ship and not be held accountable for what Marcus and Sam did back in the pilot in terms of firing a missile on the United States,” Braugher says. “Because, in essence, we’re not equipped to be traitors. We’re patriots and it’s of the utmost importance that we defend ourselves.”

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One crew member who does understand just how serious the situation is and is not happy about it is Master Chief Joseph Prosser (Robert Patrick), who is a bit of a throwback because, as we saw in the last episode, he has trouble taking orders from a woman, but he also is going head-to-head with Captain Chaplin.

“This is what happens, I think, when patriots clash,” Braugher says. “We’re both very passionate about what it is that we’re doing, and we’re both supremely concerned about the health and welfare of our crew. I would have to say that Chaplin needs Prosser very much not only because he exercises discipline over the crew, but because he’s a touchstone for the crew. If the chief of the boat thinks that it’s right, then the guys have a tendency to fall in line… I ask Prosser to make sure that we get home, that it is important to help me get all of these men and women back home and, I think, he’s following through on that. We may disagree, but I think we do understand that the whole point is to get back home. “

The “Last Resort” airs Thursday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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