This is it, crime stoppers, CSI: New York’s final two episodes of the season (fingers crossed) start on Friday. So we went to the show’s star, Gary Sinise, and got all the details for you.
This week concludes the two episode arc with Mac’s former partner played by Peter Fonda and with it brings action aplenty: a vicious lab attack, car wreck and a shoot-out. Plus, we have scoop on the emotional season-ender that has Mac questioning his future.
What could make Mac Taylor walk out on his lab family? Who has a target on their back? What’s really behind the Mac-Jo flirtation? Here’s what we learned:
Q&A With CSI: New York Star Gary Sinise
What can we expect in this season’s penultimate episode?
This week is a powerful episode that really has a lot of high-tension drama, there’s a lot of destruction. Somebody’s after us, he’s out for vengeance and he’s not going to stop until he makes sure both Peter Fonda’s character and my character have paid the price. He’s after us to kill us. We have to try to prevent that from happening. This week is action packed. It’s a high-tension, action packed episode that starts at a very high level and goes higher.
Some of that action puts the team members in danger when the lab is attacked.
Lindsay (Anna Belknap) is pinned down, and Mac rescues her and gets her out of there at great personal sacrifice. He just runs into the hail of bullets and tries to pull her out of there. He could easily stay where he is, behind the desk, but he doesn’t even think twice about it. That’s what certain people do, they’re just put to the test, we hear it all the time with Medal of Honor recipients. He sees a need that needs to be met and he goes to do it. Not everyone has that kind of quality.
Mac and his former partner, William Hunt, have very different law enforcement styles, but will reconnecting with his old partner affect Mac emotionally?
I think so. He has found out some things through the course of this two episode arc that were really shocking to him. So there’s some good mystery as to what happened in the past, these two characters are tied together from a past life, when they were partners. Fonda’s character has been out of the picture for a while. Him coming back into Mac’s life, where they don’t really see each other very often, and having it be in this dramatic fashion puts Mac’s patience to the test.
Let’s talk about the finale, what events lead Mac to question his future in the crime lab?
There’s something very scary that happens to him in beginning of the episode that drives all the action in a very specific kind of way. Mac’s really put to the test and he starts evaluating a lot of things in his life. When we first started the series there was a pile of unsolved cases on his desk and here in the season finale there is one left. Through the course of event it makes him really go back and revisit this particular case and want to find closure to that one. We end up down in South Carolina, I believe. We’re tracking somebody and they’re taking us on this journey all over the country. That pulls us out of New York in a very emotional conclusion to that particular episode. He’s going to be questioning a lot of things in our season finale.
Do you think at this point Mac is still happy in his job?
At the end of this season he’s evaluating a lot of things that are going on inside of him. A lot of feelings, a lot of unanswered questions and questions coming up that he never thought about much. And personal happiness is one of those things. Like so many police officers and people in those positions, at a certain time, when you’ve seen a lot of death and you’ve seen a lot of despair and you’ve seen a lot of ugly things in your life, you might come to a certain point where you wonder how much more you can take.
He’s really built a family with his team, would that make it difficult for him to walk away from the crime lab?
That’s his family absolutely. It might [affect his decision], sure. He’s not married, he doesn’t have kids and he’s dedicated to his job. Like anybody in a leadership position like that, in public service, you want to know that you are contributing. I don’t think he’s at the point where doesn’t think he’s effective, he knows he’s effective. I just think at the end of this particular episode he has a couple of questions in his head maybe we’ll get a chance next year to find out where those go.
In the finale will we see emotional moments from the other members of the team?
Yeah. It’s the end of the season so everybody is moving on with their lives. A lot of them are just going on as usual. Mac’s a little bit different and Jo (Sela Ward) recognizes that something’s going on with him. They have a very nice relationship that they’ve developed over the course of the season. There are some very good scenes between Jo and Mac in the finale.
Do you think there is something deeper to their relationship or is the flirtation part of Jo’s character?
No, I think that’s who she is. She plays mind tricks with all kinds of folks. [Laughs.] She’s coming from the FBI, as an investigator, so she’s used to tricking people and she’ll do whatever she can. With Mac she’s let her hair down. She’s let herself show her vulnerability because she trusts him so much. They proved to become colleagues, friends, she respects him as a boss, he respects her as a senior member of his team and they’ve developed a very nice relationship through the course of the season.
What has been your favorite part of Mac’s growth throughout the series?
That’s such an interesting question because I’ve always wanted Mac to be representative of so many of the great public servants that I know out there. Either firefighters or police officers or military leaders, I have a lot of friends in all those areas who are really really good at their jobs. Over the years I’ve met more outstanding people that are serving our country and serving their cities in very distinguished ways and I’ve always wanted Mac to be representative of so many great people I’ve met. I think that part of the character has deepened as time has gone on. He’s just a high integrity, honorable public servant and we have a lot of those folks out there. They’re family men, they go to church, they do jobs on a daily basis that are just a very significant part of their lives. And that’s who Mac is.
With CSI: New York on the bubble for renewal, has the network given any indication about the show’s renewal chances?
Everybody I talk to says they love the show. [Laughs.] That’s all, that’s all I know, they love the show. So let’s hope they love it enough to keep it on the air. I’d like to keep doing it.
What do you think could make Mac leave his job? Are you excited to see the lab shot up again? Have you been voting for CSI: New York in E! Online’s Save One Show campaign? Hit the comments and tell us all about it!