Eric Christian Olsen Talks Torture, Teases NCIS: Los Angeles Season 5

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NCIS: Los Angeles season 4 ended with the tragic scene of Deeks and Sam being tortured by Isaak Sidorov after Marcel Janvier betrayed them. Their search for the missing nukes was interrupted with not only their lives at risk, but with Quinn's life literally hanging on the edge.

Deeks went from a high moment in his life when he finally kissed Kensi to the lowest possible when he was being tortured. I caught up with Eric Christian Olsen at the CBS Annual Summer Stars event to ask him about the events of the finale and how those events will play out into the upcoming season....

Deeks and Kensi Kiss

Did you watch the torture scene?

Olsen: I read your article "Did the Torture Go Too Far?" I read the article and then went back and re-watched that because of what you wrote and I was like, 'she was right.' It's not graphic, it's not gruesome. It's just literally that scream at the end. And you wrote very kind words about me and what they allowed me to do on that show. And I think that you're right. I think what's so heartbreaking is that you see a character that I think for some reason has made so many emotional attachments with fans that they and you saw him just at the bottom.

It was the scream. You sold it with the scream. I think people imagined more than what is actually shown.

Olsen: Yeah. He really just puts the drill up and then it goes back to Sam and off camera you hear that awful scream.

How was it to film that scene?

Olsen: It was awful. It was awful. I couldn't do a horror movie. I know that. My buddy did Hostel and I almost did that movie with him, but I couldn't have done it. Jamming that thing in my mouth and I'm all tied down. I read a bunch of books this summer about torture and war and about PTSD and what the effects of that kind of -- what we shot. And, I can't even imagine what that's like for someone to go through when that's real because even when it was fake and they yelled "cut" it still got in my head.

Why was Deeks able to hold strong for Sam and Sam's wife, especially given Sam's almost disdain for Deeks?

Olsen: I think that's who he is. I don't think he's doing it so much for Sam or to prove himself. I think that's just who he is as a person. This is an opportunity in which he gets to kinda show "I don't know what your problem is with me and it's about my hair. It's about the style of music. It's about all these things that don't matter." This is the sh*t that f***ing matters and you'll see how it ends.

The season premiere is so good. It is absolutely heartbreaking. I think the most interesting thing about these types of shows are not the events, but the consequence of the events and how it affects the relationships of the characters. And, this is maybe the most -- it's such a watershed moment for so many of the characters. I think there's consequences emotionally to deal with for what it is that happens.

For Deeks, this is not his background. He was a lawyer. He got into being a detective and then all of a sudden he's tortured for 7 hours. And, he doesn't have the ability, at this point, to compartmentalize and fight through it. It's the most raw he's ever been. It's the most vulnerable he's ever been. It's the most honest conversations that he's ever had with Sam and more interesting it's the most honest conversation he's ever had with Kensi. There's a scene with her that's so good at the end [of the premiere]. Everyone at base camp was crying. Just tears.

Before Deeks got tortured, he had a moment with Kensi. Why did he chose that moment to make a move?

Olsen: I think because he -- especially when he has those kind of emotions -- he has an inability to articulate`how he feels. And, especially with her. I think that you have that moment of clarity and I think we have this in our own lives which is just those perfect moments of clarity in which everything makes sense in the world. And, that was that. That was that moment. That was that kiss. And, that was that moment after that kiss. It's just like that's it. And, then we spend the rest of our lives trying to get back to that moment. And now we've put all these obstacles in his path to get back to the place where it was that. Which is this is how I feel. This is how I feel about you. And, this is what I want. And, now that's all out the window. 

That's so sad. I have to say that I was never a fan of Deeks and Kensi getting together until the season finale. I thought that they're partners. They can't hook up.

Olsen: Right. That's why it's genius. That's why Scott Gemmill and Shane Brennan and Frank [Military] are all geniuses. It's like we can take them to that place and then tear his world apart. Let him fight to get back there. You know what I mean. You have that moment. We all have these. We can think back on our lives like when it made that most sense. When life made the most sense and relationships made the most sense. And, whatever happens and we lose that, we spending the rest of our lives trying to get back to it.

Do you know what's in the box?

Olsen: Yeah. 

And will the viewers find out?

Olsen: Yes.

Early in the season?

Olsen: No. They're going to have to wait.

Will it be this next season?

Olsen: I think it's gonna be this season. We'll find out what's in the box.

NCIS: Los Angeles season 5 premieres on Tuesday, September 24 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.

Carla Day is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.

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