Patrick J. Adams Talks Mike's Hair, Life in Prison, Relationships on Suits Season 6

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Hi, welcome to fireside chats with Patrick.

I had the chance to chat with Patrick Adams at ATX Festival about Suits Season 6. We were, naturally, by a fire because that is where you conduct interviews in Austin, Texas in June.

I'm sure by now, you've all seen the haircutting promo. This, naturally, lead to a conversation about how Mike really needed a haircut. Adams takes full responsibility for Mike's hair last season, "That was my fault. I tried a new haircut. I tried a new hairstyle and it didn't work."

This Is My New Home - Suits Season 6 Episode 1

Of course, I didn't begin the interview with a hair question. What kind of journalist would I be? I opened by asking Adams where we pick up; specifically, if there is a time jump, and that's when the hair cutting promo was mentioned, and then the next seven minutes were focused on Mike's hair.

Adams had a fun fact to share about the promo: "that's not my hair actually being cut because we had already cut my hair before we did that." 

So, whose hair is it, you ask? Adams said, "They had some poor kid that they brought in who had long hair for the close ups to shave his head, and I was like, 'how do you feel about shaving your head?' He was like, 'I'm not happy about it.'"

As Adams said, that kid is "the real unsung hero here. The guy who got his hair cut because he brought joy to you." I'm not going to lie, watching "Mike" get his hair shaved off definitely brought joy to me.

All right, now that we've gotten the important topics out of the way, here's how the rest of the interview unfolded:

TV Fanatic: So where do we pick up?

Patrick Adams: So to answer your first question that came ten minutes ago [before the hair discussion], it starts up in prison, and I'm getting processed, and then I'm in jail, so there's no time cut. You're not getting a time cut where Mike's not in jail anymore.

That's what I thought was going to happen until I saw the hair cutting promo.

Adams: I thought thought it would happen too, and I think it's really brave and cool that Aaron [Korsh] did not do that. I think he wanted to do justice to the fact that this thing happened, and if they just [snaps] cut to like me coming out of prison, you would not have had to deal with any of the consequences of what happened.

How's it going for Mike in prison?

Adams: It's tough. There's some violence. It's a tough place. The problem is that he's in a white collar prison, but there are some unsavory characters that have managed to find their way into that prison. And,wouldn't you know, they are related to Harvey in some way and obviously have some vendettas that they want to make right, and they are going to do it through Mike.

So he's pretty much, as soon as he hits the cell block, he's forced to deal with some pretty serious things and be in a situation where he and Harvey have to work together to try and save his life.

So is Mike friends with anyone right now after everything that happened?

Adams: I haven't really shot any scenes with anyone but Gabriel of the main cast. There's one other person that I've shot a scene with, and I won't spoil that because I think it's a good scene.

He has a friend in prison played by Erik Palladino, and he's been great to work with. They become very close, and that plot line becomes...He becomes sort of the main plot point in prison about whether or not Mike can turn on him or not in order to get out of prison. It's sort of his driving force.

Do you know if Mike's informed about all that's going on with Pearson Specter Litt?

Adams: He's not very involved with it, no. He's got his own problems. Mike is in his own little world, and Harvey is the bridge between both of them, so Harvey is dealing with Pearson Specter Litt problems and Mike problems. But Mike is not involved so far in anything to do with the firm.

I'm sure the firm wants it that way.

Adams: Yeah they can't afford to have him around, and I think that's going to be what's interesting about what's going to happen to the show. None of us know what this is all going to look if and when Mike does manage to get out of prison.

Do you think Mike's thought about that?

Adams: I think Mike at this point is in survival mode. I think he's just trying to survive. I'm sure it's probably in the back of his head of what is he going to do, but right now he's just trying to like to get up and go to bed every day without getting hurt.

That's a good goal.

Adams: That's a strong goal. It's an important one.

Would you say that Mike and Rachel are still together? How are they?

Adams: I think they are separated big time. Their lives are kind of on hold. She's not allowed to visit him for his first month in prison, too. It's a rule in prison that you can't have any visitors, so they are really far from each other, which I think is going to make it great when they get back together. But for fans of that particular relationship, they have to put things on hold for a bit.

So Mike can have relationships in prison.

Adams: Yeah, so he can find intimate, very intimate, tender, loving relationships in the prison. It's a whole different show this season. You're not going to see it coming. [laughs] It's great. It's like Oz if you just squint a little bit...No, it's cool, though. They've built this whole prison.

They built this two floor amazing set. You know we have like 250 extras in prison gear. When you are in there you really feel the sensation of the crush of how many people are around and not knowing who you can trust and how scary that might be.

I'm a little worried for Mike. I'm not sure how he will handle it.

Adams: You should worry. His hair is better. That's all that matters now.

He's a little lighter now.

Adams: He's lighter.

I assume the episodes will be like half focusing on Mike in prison and half on Pearson Specter.

Adams: It's probably a little less than half just because there's so many characters outside of the firm they also have to service. It's probably like a third? I don't know. It depends on the episode, too. The first episodes we deal a lot with prison, and then as it goes on, it's probably a little less than that.

What are you most excited for this season?

Adams: I'm excited to take this whole prison thing to the next level, and see if people go with us on it, you know. Truthfully, if I'm being honest, I think people will be mixed about it. I think certain people will be unhappy that Harvey and Mike are not together, and we're not doing what we do in the show. And they'll say, 'this isn't the show that we love,' but ultimately, I'm proud of that.

I think a good show needs to be brave enough to change its direction and change the circumstances.That's the only way you grow. Otherwise we just do the same episode of Suits for seven years, and then we go away. It's like, 'What did we do? We really didn't take any risks,' you know? So, I hope people are willing to see past that frustration that maybe the show's not quite the same as they want it and go with us on the trip.

Out of everyone in Pearson Specter Litt, who do you think would be the best to survive in prison?

Adams: I think Mike. Mike comes from...you know Harvey's a boxer and all that, but he's real pretty. He would not do very well in prison. I think Mike has got like the street smarts, and he's sort of been figuring out how to survive for a long time and figuring out who to trust and how to trust them. I think he's the perfect guy to be in prison.

Do you think he's thought of other careers now that it looks like, most likely, he will not be a lawyer?

Adams: I'm not entirely sure specifically. I think he wants to help people, and I think there are a bunch of different ways that someone can help people, you know there's social work, social justice.

I think he wants to be near the law because he knows he can affect a lot of change with that, so I don't know if there's the hope that maybe he can get some sort of special dispensation from Sean Cahill from the Justice Department that maybe he can go back to law school and get legit again. But I think helping people is the most important thing in his life. He wants to be able to change people's situations and make them better.

Do you want to wrap up [part one of] our fireside chat?

Adams: Guys, I want to thank you all for another episode of Patrick's fireside chats. It's warm. It's cozy, and it's a thousand degrees outside, and we're sitting by a fire because we're so cold.

Will you miss Mike's hair? What are you most excited to see this coming season of Suits? Leave your thoughts, hopes, and dreams in the comments below and be back tomorrow for Part 2 of our Fireside Chat with Patrick J. Adams for more on Mike and Rachel, Suits' future, and weathering prison life!!

Suits Season 6 Episode 1 airs Wednesday July 13 at 9/8c on USA.

Allison Nichols is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.

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Suits Quotes

Sometimes good guys gotta do bad things to make the bad guys pay.

Harvey

The rules dictate that you must be precise as the law is a precise endeavor.

Mike