Behold, the funniest new show of the year: The CW's Beauty and the Beast airs tonight.
And OK, in all fairness, it's not technically supposed to be a comedy, but confession: We had a better time watching this show's first episode than pretty much any other new show this fall. It's so deliciously wrong. And unintentionally campy. And ripe with eye candy, thanks to drop-dead-gorgeous Kristin Kreuk (the beauty) and Jay Ryan (the beast)—don't let that two-inch scar on his cheek fool you!
Vanity Alert!? Why is Jay spending six times as long in the makeup chair? Get the scoop on that and much more in our exclusive video interview below...
When you watch the series premiere tonight, you may be asking: What was it that made likeable Smallville fan favorite Kristin and Terra Nova heartthrob Jay sign on for this show? We cracked that mystery for you...
"I get to play two characters," Jay explains to me, after revealing he flew in multiple times from his native Australia to screen test for the role. "There's Vincent and then there's this demon inside of him that he can't control. And it's very different than any other beast we've seen before. He's part of a botched military experience, so that gives us a lot to play with."
Kristin explains that she loved the contrast between her new Beauty character Catherine (a tough-talking New York detective) and her Smallville alter ego, Lana. "That was a big part of why I liked this role," she tells me. "I loved that Catherine is strong and she's got a cetain amount of complexity. Lana wore her emotions on her sleeve and Catherine's not that way at all. She's got a little more stuff going on."
She also "kicks all the ass in the show!" Jay says of Kristin, to which she adds with a laugh, "Yeah, he just comes in at the last second and throws people around...Roooar!" Still, Jay adds that his character Vincent will be getting more stunty as the series goes on. "We're going to be doing harness work and we're discussing now how far the beast can jump. What is this DNA mutation side to him? And how far can we take it? I love that stuff."
Naturally, as this is the CW, and the stars are hot as fire (we know—shocker!), we can only assume that Kristin and Jay's characters will be getting all mushy real soon. But wait! There's a twist.
"There's a physical barrier that if Vincent gets too excited, if he has an adrenaline rush, he turns into the beast," Jay points out. The upside? "He doesn't need Viagra! That's for sure."
Check out Beauty and the Beast tonight on the CW, then come back here to tell us what you think...We want to hear it all!