Last we talked with Scott Porter, the Hart of Dixie series star was describing a seemingly more independent and perhaps introspective George Tucker for the third season of the CW small town drama. But as it turned out, that new look at a beloved character may have proven to be just temporary (and only in the third season premiere). As his ex Lemon (Jaime King) got him back into fighting shape to take on the town's legal troubles, George quickly found himself back in Bluebell and already falling for another young woman in Antoinette Robertson's Lynly.
"I personally-- Scott Porter-- would love for George to be single, but for George Tucker, he's extremely scared to be alone. After being in a relationship for 15 years, you saw his struggles of trying to be single in season two, and he's not very good at it. He's a bit of a serial monogamist, I think. He keeps on falling into these relationships. He has a reputation about him that he's a really great guy and girls jump at the chance-- but you'll hear it repeatedly from him this season-- he says it-- he's damaged. You know, he's damaged goods. He's trying to be careful, but it's extremely difficult with someone as insistent as you'll see the Lynly character turn out to be," Porter said when LA TV Insider Examiner visited with him on set last week.
"I wish we got more of single George; I wish we got more of him kind of shaping himself as a man individually instead of being tethered to relationships, but it's just not in the cards for the beginning of the season. You do see him kind of keeping people at arm's length...that's kind of where his head is for the first half of the season."
What Porter said Lynly represents for George is a bit of an "escape" from the usual drama of the town that he is pretty hell-bent on getting involved in this time around. He's not looking at her as a rebound, though he is reluctant to put any kind of label on their relationship. Porter called their situation "on-again, off-again" and noted that George isn't looking for anything serious, but Lynly may just prove to be more insistent and persuasive than he bargained for. But additionally, she is new in town, and she comes with fewer ties and less history than pretty much any other woman there. Of course, she has one very important tie (to Cress Williams' Lavon) that could cause more trouble for yet another one of George's important relationships if the information about the two of them hooking up comes out the wrong way. Porter shared that news of George and Lynly's connection doesn't "come out as quickly as George would like it to" but once it does, it does put the two men a bit "at odds."
"George would like to be upfront with everybody, but there's other people involved as well that might not want that to happen, so not all of the cards are on the table at the start of the season," Porter said.
"He's definitely not opening up to people. George is, I think, scared at this point to open up because every time he does he seems to get hurt. There was a fault on both sides for the end of the Lemon relationship but all of the ones since, you know, it's not always his fault. He has some baggage with Zoe, but there's some insecurities on the girls' parts, as well, and that's what happened with Tansy. He feels like he really opened up to Tansy and really had something great with her, but she couldn't trust him and couldn't get through trust issues of her own. So starting season three he's closed off, I'd say, a little bit more than usual."
Porter also noted that you will continue to see George giving Zoe (Rachel Bilson) a bunch of attitude early this season because he's still pretty "pissed off" at her. Bringing Joel (Josh Cooke) to town probably doesn't help matters, though Porter pointed out George really doesn't have a problem with him; he just "wishes Zoe would have stayed in New York" with him.
"Zoe has a lot of repair to do with a lot of different friendships, and George is definitely one of [them]. You don't see him and her fall in step right away again," Porter said.
If it sounds like things are going to be very, very serious for George Tucker, well, to some degree they are. Porter promises that there would be a "lot of the same of the crazy George antics," noting that though George has become a kind of "satellite character," not sharing many scenes early on with the other core characters, he is still the "center of the slapstick universe, as far as Hart of Dixie goes." The main thing he wishes, though, is that more of those antics would include his buddy Wade (Wilson Bethel), a sentiment about which we're sure a lot of fans feel similarly.
"There's definitely not any George and Wade shenanigans [yet], which I'm actually waiting for. I think that's one of my favorite relationships on the show. I think it epitomizes how dudes really work as far as long time friendships go. They don't really talk about girls; they get into fights [and] make up the next day; they don't hold grudges; they know who each other are as men and they respect that. They dig at each other, but at the end of the day, you know, they care about each other. I just wish there was more of that," Porter said.
But hey, the season's still young!
Hart of Dixie airs on The CW on Monday nights at 8 p.m. Click here for our video chat with Porter.
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