Brant Daugherty is back as Noel on Pretty Little Liars. Fans of the show were shocked when Noel turned up in last week’s premiere kissing Mona of all people. Brant sits down with wetpaint.com to talk about the pairing. Are the two everything they seem?
Wetpaint: You’ve been shooting Season 2 of Pretty Little Liars — what’s different about it from your experience on set during the first season?
Brant Daugherty: Noel is a bit more evolved in his arc as a character in Season 2. Once he made that shift to becoming a darker character, we’ve been exploring his motives and intentions and how he interacts with everyone, so it’s fun to go further down that road to a more mysterious place. In Season 1, he showed this romantic, musical side to woo Aria, and then reacted really badly when she chose Ezra over him, and we’re continuing with the idea that he’s a malicious character — or at least mysterious.
At the end of Season 1, we caught Noel in the crowd during the final scene. What was he doing there? Just creepin’?
Our producer, Oliver Goldstick, says that, with regard to Noel, you can suspend someone from school but you can’t suspend them from a town. So I’ve always considered Noel to be an entity in Rosewood regardless of whether we’re seeing him or not. I think he’s very much in tune to what’s happening there. We didn’t hit “pause” when he got suspended. As far as why exactly he comes through the crowd there at the end, I’m going to leave that up to your imagination for now.
What was your reaction when you read that Mona was meeting Noel at the restaurant?
Janel Parrish, who plays Mona, has been a great friend of mine since day one, so we had a good laugh about it. The best thing I can tell you about it is that when we did the table read for the premiere after just getting the script, so many of us were reading it for the first time — and we got to that scene, and it reads, “Noel walks in and kisses Mona” — and I remember Lucy Hale audibly gasped, “Oh my God!” If we can get [Lucy Hale] to gasp, we can get the fans for sure.
Can you reveal if there will be anything ongoing between Noel and Mona?
I can say that they become pretty close.
Now that you’re a couple episodes into the season, how do you feel about what the writers have done with your character?
I couldn’t be more thrilled with it. They continually present me with new challenges and things to explore. With Noel, because he’s such a mysterious guy, it’s interesting playing him because I can take him a couple different ways depending on who he’s talking to, what the scene’s about, what he wants. They’re constantly giving me new angles to come at people with, new motivations, and I’m so thrilled, fortunate, blessed, honored to have such a fantastic writing team.