NBC’s new drama Awake sounds a little bit complicated. Jason Isaacs plays a cop who’s suffered an accident where either his wife or son have died. However, he lives both lives. In one world his wife is alive, in another his son is. It seems one world is a dream but he can’t tell which.
As critics of the Television Critics Association asked Isaacs to clarify the plot, he showed them a video of his five-year-old daughter explaining the plot. Last year, when the working title was R.E.M., Isaacs filmed her describing the plot. He described his iPhone video so the press could hear it.
“She goes, ‘R.E.M. is about a man who has a bad accident and he lives a life with his wife and he goes to sleep and he wakes up and lives a life with his son and then he wakes up the other day and it’s his wife again and he can’t decide which one and then he decides he wants both,’” Isaacs said.
So if you’re worried Awake is too complicated, there’s your simple explanation. That doesn’t necessarily mean little Ms. Isaacs is a fan.
“That’s what she says. Then I say, ‘Would you watch it?’ and she goes, ‘Mmmm, I don't know.”
Isaacs costarred in the Harry Potter films as Lucius Malfoy, father of the cowardly traitor Draco. Comparatively he thinks Awake is more reality grounded.
“That's my job to pretend that I have an elf or to pretend that I can fly or whatever my job is here. The reason I wanted to do the show is it's a fantastic what if. That's what I've been doing professionally for 20-something years. What if? What if I had these incredibly elaborate dreams, and neither of them feel like a dream? So in some ways, it's less of a stretch of the imagination than anything I've ever done. I have a real world. I have a real life with my wife, and I've lost my son. I have to experience all the things that go with that. I close my eyes, and I'm in another real world just as real, and I can't share fully with anyone except the audience what that's like, but it just takes on a great imaginative journey.”
Awake premieres March 1 on NBC.