I've come to love the way Hank says "Barry." How did you work on the accent? Is there a Noho Hank version of the Chechen accent?
Carrigan: In terms of research, I did a lot of rabbit hole-ing down the YouTube. That was certainly a huge resource for me. We also had a dialect specialist come in to help me with specific sounds, but for the most part this is also a character who moves to the United States and really wants to acclimate.
That brings me to the name: Noho Hank.
Carrigan: Spoiler: Probably not his real name. Most likely not his Chechen birth name.
Do you imagine "Noho" came because he just loves North Hollywood so much?
Carrigan: Yeah, I think that's exactly what it is. I think he landed there and he was just like, "Oh yeah, oh baby." This is now who I am.
In terms of this character's strange proclivities, was there something that has become part of him that was created on the fly?
Carrigan: Before we shot the pilot, I talked to Bill about the tattoos. And the tattoos were something that I was, like, "Well, now that we have the time to actually think about it, this is actually probably pretty meaningful." You know, obviously there are people, maybe like in Williamsburg, who have tattoos for no reason or whatever -- they're ironic and don't mean anything. But I feel like Hank's tattoos are very meaningful and tell a story. As far as on the fly, that was maybe a little bit more premeditated but certainly a huge thing in terms of informing the character.
Can you tell me some of the story of those tattoos?
Carrigan: A lot of those tattoos are representative of time in prison and time in crime. What you went to prison for, how many years you served, if you served three out of six years -- that's one of the tattoos. One of the tattoos is a scorpion which meant he did time in the hole. Hank has certainly had a hard life, which is kind of not necessarily what his nature would depict.
The show does have this darkness, but Noho Hank comes on the screen and lights it up for a minute.
Carrigan: He lights it up for sure. He's a beaming light.
The scenes with Noho Hank are almost more of the comic relief than the stuff in the acting class. And you would think it would be the opposite.
Carrigan: Leave it to the Chechen crime boss to have a moment where you can relax and laugh for a little bit. But that's what Barry does so well. It totally flips it on its head and makes you kind of question what exactly you're rooting for, and makes you wonder, what is this dynamic? But it's a dynamic that's pulled off so well and it's so largely in tribute to Bill Hader and [co-creator] Alec Berg with such a clear vision, who are able to walk this tightrope tonally which is so different.
It seems like Noho Hank just wants to have friends. Barry says to him, you could take the whole mob, and Noho Hank's dreaming about going 50-50 with the Bolivian boss Cristobal.
Carrigan: That's more important to him. It's so funny. As far as a character study, it's really endearing. I feel like a lot of people who are involved in crime are in it for themselves and are in it to make their name and really rise above everyone else. Hank doesn't want to do that, he wants to keep his friends around, he wants that sense of camaraderie. Cream rises to the top but let's make sure you guys are all creamy, too.