In ABC’s new drama “Whiskey Cavalier,” FBI superagent Will Chase (code name Whiskey Cavalier) must work with take-no-prisoners CIA operative Frankie Trowbridge (code name Fiery Tribune) to run an interagency team. Their relationship is a mix of loathing, tension, mutual respect and competitiveness. Chase (Scott Foley) is a sentimentalist who is dealing with a broken heart. Trowbridge (Lauren Cohan) would rather kick butt than show her true feelings.
Foley said he’s excited to play a character that goes against the spy guy norm. “It’s much more relatable to have a character like this than someone sort of stoic instead,” he said.
Executive producers Dave Hemingson and Bill Lawrence have made it easy for the audience to believe that Trowbridge can be so tough by casting Cohan. The British-American actress and model has been showing off her fighting skills since 2011 as Maggie on “The Walking Dead.”
Cohan said the strength of the show is how it can go from dealing with deep emotional issues to having a huge fight sequence.
She said she appreciates her character’s consistent unwillingness to admit she is starting to trust her new partner, something that goes against the independence she has been working to master for years. Their relationship grows amid gun battles and explosions.
All the scenes unfold at exotic locations around the world.
“Whiskey Cavalier” doesn’t use a Hollywood back lot or set in Canada to fake the locations. The series opener after the Oscars sent the team to Prague for its first official mission, where Chase had to seduce the widow of a shipping tycoon to gain access to a list of criminal clients.
Lawrence lamented that despite the money being spent to film around the world, at least one member of a test audience who saw the first episode praised the production team for using great special effects to make it look like a scene in Paris was shot there. Lawrence said all the location shots were filmed in the real cities.
“We’re still going everywhere, and still, even though it’s a cliché, you’ve all heard the saying that ‘The setting of a location is a character,’ ” he said. “I think we are shooting for a good-time popcorn ride that people can’t believe that we’re actually doing this stuff … in these places, and you’ll see it in every episode.”
Foley comes to “Whiskey Cavalier” after starring in the intense TV drama “Scandal.” His other credits include “Fatal Vision,” “True Blood,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “The Unit.”
“Whiskey Cavalier” reunites him with Lawrence, who produced the 2001-10 comedy series “Scrubs.” That Lawrence was behind the spy drama gave Foley confidence there would be comedic moments, something he was looking for with his next job.
“It was the most important thing for me when doing the show,” Foley said. “I wasn’t interested in just doing an action show or a drama. I wanted to do a show that reminded me of the shows that I grew up watching — ‘Remington Steele,’ ‘Moonlighting,’ ‘Hart to Hart,’ ‘Simon & Simon.’
“I miss those light one-hour shows. And for me, I wouldn’t be interested in doing this if the comedy wasn’t there.”
The cast of “Whiskey Cavalier” also includes Ana Ortiz, Tyler James Williams, Vir Das and Josh Hopkins.