Bob Odenkirk, the latest celeb to step into Sean Evans’ spicy arena, opened his Hot Ones interview by disparaging the entire concept of Hot Ones. “I don’t particularly see the connection [between the interview and the hot sauces]... I think I’m perfectly capable of talking without having a part of my body injured,” he said. Still, he went on to express his admiration for the actors behind certain characters that do (often) use pain as a way to get people talking... through far grizzlier methods than a few “wings of death.”
In between a stoic tear or two, Odenkirk opened up about what it was like to live inside the mind of a character so driven by resentment for so long, and how his experience playing Saul Goodman on Better Call Saul helped him to better understand the struggles of actors like James Gandolfini and costar Bryan Cranston before him.
“I remember reading about Bryan [Cranston] playing Walter White and [James] Gandolfini playing Tony Soprano and the frustrations that they felt with the challenge of just staying in that guy’s head. And I would be like, ‘Oh come on, it’s acting. I mean, how hard can it be?’ And then I got to do Saul, and I was like ‘Oh, this is fucking hard,’” he said.
He went on to elaborate on what playing such an awful person did to his own psyche, before waxing philosophical on the nature of resentment and the power of letting go, all while sweating out a healthy dose of sauce number 7: The Dreams Of Calypso. Ah, Hot Ones. Never change.
You’re the guy twelve hours a day for years, and even though it’s not your real life, that’s what acting is. It’s sitting there going ‘I feel this, and he feels that, and I resent this, and I want that, and why do I want it? Because fuck that guy and fuck this person I’m gonna get him back.’ You’re just conjuring up those feelings and it’s exhausting.
You know that they say don’t hold onto resentments and it’s true... Fuck it, compartmentalize, let go of that shit because it’s just killing you. It’s not going to help you make better choices. It’s going to hurt you more than it hurts anyone you resent.
Odenkirk also spoke about letting go of these simulated resentments through his new show Lucky Hank, which he described as a “comedy-drama mixed even-steven.”
“This guy is sort of fundamentally different than Saul because he is connected to people in his world. He loves them, they love him,” the actor said of his new English professor protagonist, before continuing (with an air of relief), “Not to mention, there’s no drugs, there’s no guns, there’s no cartel, there’s no zombies!”
Lucky Hank is currently airing Sunday nights at 9 p.m. ET on AMC+.