Violett Beane Explains Why Playing Characters From Comic Books Is No Joke
19-year-old Violett Beane plays Jesse Quick on CW’s “The Flash,” a show based on the comic book character whose power is the ability to move really, really fast. Violett, on the other hand, is taking it slow these days, as the show just finished wrapping up filming, and is now working on music videos with her boyfriend, and enjoying her break from Los Angeles. Here, we discuss Captain Underpants, her superhero crush, and just how serious it is to play a character from a comic book.
Who was your favorite superhero growing up?
To be honest, I wasn’t really big into comic books growing up. My favorite was probably Captain Underpants, but does he count?
I don’t think he counts. Who’s your favorite superhero now?
[Laughing] True. I would have said Spiderman a couple of ears ago, but all the new Spiderman franchises about to come out are really killing it for me.
Totally. You can’t beat that upside-down kiss. What’s it been like to play a comic book character on a television show?
It’s been really interesting, especially since superheroes are so hot right now. And it’s hard to figure out why exactly they are. I guess it makes sense, since young kids can get into the narratives, and then there’s also an aspect of sex appeal for adults. But as far as me being able to play a character like that, it’s just been great, especially since the fans have this preconceived expectation towards comic book characters. But for the most part, the response has been so positive.
Is that surprising?
Yeah! People who are are connected to the comic book world have such strong feelings and opinions about the ways the characters they love are portrayed. For example, casting Iris West as a black actress was a really big deal. That was a huge thing for a lot of people, and Candice [Patton] kills it, you know? But there are a lot of Twitter pages out there dedicated to sentiments like, “Keep Iris black” or “Keep Iris white.”
That’s insane. Arguing over interpretation sounds like the issues people deal with surrounding religion.
It’s true, because comics are the bible for a lot of people.
Who’s your superhero crush?
I’d have to say Wonder Woman in the new Batman Vs. Superman! She was the epitome of a strong woman, and just so in charge of her sexuality. I love her.
What are you up to this summer?
The first Monday in June, I’ll be releasing a music video that I directed, edited, and starred in for a band called Eyelid Kid [her boyfriend’s band]. I’m playing a deranged orphan child. We shot the whole thing in the middle of the night, in an abandoned house, for which we had no permits. The cops showed up. It was… interesting [laughing].
What was it like to work with your boyfriend?
It actually ended up working out really well. We’re both creative people, and came up with the idea together. I think a lot of the times it can be hard for couples to work together, but it was a lot of fun for the both of us.