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'Beauty and the Beast': Jay Ryan On the 'Love Square,' Vincent's Past, and the Rest of Season 1

By Sydney Bucksbaum, Hollywood.com Staff

It's been more than a month since that doozy of a cliffhanger on The CW's Beauty and the Beast, and when the show returns from its holiday hiatus on Thursday, Jan. 24, don't expect the drama to settle down. In fact, when Jay Ryan talked to Hollywood.com about tonight's midseason premiere, "Seeing Red," he couldn't stress enough about how high the stakes have been raised.

After Catherine's (Kristin Kreuk) car crash/shootout at the end of the midseason finale, we saw Vincent, in beast mode, holding an unconscious Catherine while Evan and Heather arrived on the scene. How did the beast get out of that situation with his secret identity in tact? And how will our favorite star-crossed lovers cope when Vincent's former fiancée Alex (guest star Bridget Regan) discovers he is alive when he visits Cat in the hospital? Meanwhile, J.T. (Austin Basis) gets a surprising visitor asking about old research he did on mutant DNA, complicating his bromance with Vincent.

Before you watch tonight's episode, read up on all the spoilery tidbits Ryan revealed about the complicated "love square" between the major characters, the consequences of Vincent's past catching up with him, and the focus of the rest of the season.

Hollywood.com: So when we last saw Vincent, he was in a very compromising situation with Cat. When we come back, what are the repercussions of his actions?

Jay Ryan: Vincent's left with the call of, 'Does he have his beast instincts take over and run off into the night with Catherine's lifeless body or does he leave her there when Evan arrives so he can take care of her?' I think Vincent's conscience comes into the beast and I think that's the thing he realizes he needs to do. What she needs right now is a doctor, and as the beast he does not have those capabilities. It's a very difficult thing for him to leave the one true love of his life in the hands of the guy that could realistically take Catherine away from him.

Usually Cat is able to help calm him down when he's in beast mode. Is she able to get through to him in any way after the crash?

Well, she's unconscious. So it's the first time that Vincent is really on his own to bring his own rage down and make a rational decision as a human being while this beast overtakes his body. I think you really see at that point that from the beginning of the series his feral, ferocious side of the beast is truly being tamed and he does understand what's going on when he's in this form. But it's very difficult for him because he has to basically explain to Catherine when she's in the hospital and he goes to visit her that the so-called doctor that saved her life was in fact Evan and not him. So it really takes a beating to his pride and ego in that point. He kind of feels again like this hopeless creature that could never ever give the love and support to a woman like Catherine that she needs.

How does his ex-fiancee come into the picture?

Well, while he's at the hospital he has one of the greatest fears of his life happen, and that is being discovered by someone from his past and his old family. And that is Alex, his ex-fiancee. So Vincent has to very quickly decide, does he let it go and make her believe that she saw somewhat of a ghost, or a lookalike? All of these demons from the past, his past, resurface for him. He has to stand up as a man and finally take charge and explain to this woman what happened, where he went wrong, why he never contacted her for so long, why she thought he was dead, all these unanswered questions. Vincent's very worried about how she's going to react and once he tells her the truth of what he has become, she then becomes a target for his greatest enemy, Muirfield. So every time he goes to tell her, his instincts pull him back and he starts to make up elaborate stories about why he's been away, like the CIA, blah blah blah. Every time he goes to tell her, Alex pulls him in and sort of reminds him of the love that they had, and whatever the secret is that he's holding, that doesn't matter. They can rekindle what they had.

So I'm assuming Vincent still has feelings for Alex.

Absolutely. And they're unresolved feelings. He holds a lot of guilt, primarily, because Alex sort of nursed him through his meds addiction that he got when his brothers had passed on and he was in this really dark place. I think his anger at how his brothers died prompted him to pack his bags and disappear and go off to the military, without even giving her an option to talk him out of it or talk him through it or about where they stand in their relationship. So it's been 10, 11, 12 years since Vincent walked out on his ex-fiancée and this is the first time he's seeing her. So there's a lot of guilt and a lot of stuff they have to talk about.

That doesn't sound too good for Catherine and Vincent!

So it really heats up into… kind of a love triangle, I guess. But it's a very complicated one.

Well, with Evan in the picture, wouldn't that make it a love square?

A love square, I like that. Yes, absolutely. There is a love square. And the thing with Evan is that now he's seen an image of this so-called vigilante holding Catherine. So his suspicion that Catherine may have some connection with this guy, he doesn't really take Catherine's word for it that she has nothing to do with it, with this creature. So the hunt and the passion for Evan's drive to find this thing is more fun and more fierce.

How is that going to shape the rest of the season?

Well I feel like the show started out very much as two genres. You have the procedural and then the mythology of the beast. And the procedural was very much about establishing who Catherine was and her job and how great she was at it. And now I think we're weaving even tighter those two elements. We'll very much see the show changes course and the procedural will basically be this witch hunt for this so-called vigilante. It's really great because I feel like all the pieces of the show are now connected. It's going to be more of a fuller high-stakes romance, I guess, where all the worlds of our two lovers come crashing very closely together.

Beauty and the Beast returns with "Seeing Red" tonight at 9 PM ET/PT on The CW.

[Photo Credit: Ben Mark Holzberg/The CW]

Follow Sydney on Twitter @SydneyBucksbaum

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