Bang star Catrin Stewart dives deeper into Gina Jenkins in series 2

Catrin Stewart as Gina in Bang. (Photo Credit: Courtesy of Acorn TV.)
Catrin Stewart as Gina in Bang. (Photo Credit: Courtesy of Acorn TV.) /

Catrin Stewart discusses the new layers in Bang series 2.

Catrin Stewart is back for more crime-solving in Bang series 2. The Welsh TV crime drama‘s new series dropped on Acorn TV this week, giving audiences a fresh mystery to sink their teeth into in six episodes.

But viewers aren’t the only one with something to dig into. A new series gave Catrin the chance to further develop her character, the dogged investigator Gina Jenkins, and Gina’s complex bond with her brother Sam. She spoke to Precinct TV about getting a second shot at Gina and everything the new series has to offer.

All six episodes are streaming on Acorn TV now, and you can check out Bang series 2 by taking advantage of a 7-day free trial.

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Precinct TV: Getting a second series, and therefore more time with a character, is a big step for any TV show. What was it like for you to return for Bang series 2 and explore Gina Jenkins further?

Catrin Stewart: it was really exciting. There was quite a big gap between the first and second series, and we were waiting to hear if the series would go again.

I always felt like there was a lot more to explore in the character, and in all the other characters, and just in terms of storylines in general, and the location, and everything—the possibilities.

So it was really nice to be back. And also, I think, because we’d done a first series before and it had gone really well, we all came back with a different kind of confidence but just as much of the passion and love for wanting to make it the best we could. Working with the actors with I’d worked with before, but there were also quite a few new ones, which is really nice. It was quite an intense three months, but I can’t complain. I really enjoyed it.

PTV: There are some incredible new talents in this series. Do you have particular new additions who were intriguing for you or relationships you were excited to explore?

CS: We explore the relationship between Gina and Luke [played by Jack Parry-Jones]. That relationship, which you saw a bit of in the first series, what made it quite unique is that they had a friendship in the first series, and quite a light rapport and banter between them. And then there’s a new boss in town played by a brilliant actor called Dyfan Dwyfor, which is a very Welsh name. I’d actually worked with him before so that was really nice, to be reunited with him.

There’s obviously quite a lot of storylines in [series 2], and it was really interesting to watch it when it aired over here because I didn’t really know what was going on in the other storylines, in terms of the filming, and how it was going to be. So that was really exciting to see. I was literally blown away by all the performances.

There’s some quite intense, hard scenes between Dyfan’s character and his wife, played by Hedydd [Dylan]. Stuff that happens outside of work between them. We had a brilliant Scottish actor called David Hayman. I got to work with him a bit, which was really exciting, because he’s such a fantastic actor. But it was really lovely to see the work of other people live, on the telly; you can’t really imagine what they’re doing when you’re not in the scene.

PTV: The heart of Bang remains the same, though, which is the familial relationship between Gina and Sam, and the fact that they’re on opposite sides of the justice system. How would you characterize that dynamic in Bang series 2?

CS: The first season ends with Sam probably being sent to prison for something that Gina knew about, and Gina was involved in and tries to investigate. I think Gina still feels a huge sense of responsibility for Sam being her brother, and for what’s happened to him, and how different they are in terms of how their lives have gone, and the directions they’ve taken.

But I think as well, you get a sense that Gina struggles with Sam when he comes out of prison in the beginning of the first few episodes [of series 2]. When he comes to live with her, she’s trying her best, but she doesn’t really know how to help him. I think there’s a lot of worry there about him.

And then there’s also this secret that she’s keeping from everyone, bar Sam really. She knew that he was involved with it, and that she should’ve told someone. There was all of that to play, that was there throughout the series. Her relationship with Luke; should she decide to tell him, or not? I found it really interesting to try and play those contradictions.

PTV: Is there anything that you want to say to the Acorn TV audience as they begin watching the new series? Anything that stood out from your point of view?

CS: The fact that you’re going to be watching it in America, it’s really exciting, because I don’t know whether a lot of Americans know necessarily where Wales is. I’ve had experiences where people in America think Wales is in England, and it is actually its own country in Britain. And we have our own language, and I think that’s actually really exciting for people who don’t necessarily know that much about Wales.

The landscape is incredible. We filmed it in Port Talbot, which is a very industrial, working class, steel works town; which used to, I imagine, have mines for the mining industry. Around that, you’ve got beach, you’ve got sand, you’ve got sea. You’ve got forests, woods, mountains, and then you’ve got the city and industrial. The landscape and location [are] something that I think really is exciting and unique about the show.

And then the fact that we use English, as well as Welsh. It’s something that hasn’t really been done before, and it does portray a lot of how people speak Welsh now, especially in South Wales. I think that’s something that will be interesting for people who don’t really know about Wales. Even people outside of Wales and England were surprised [at] the way that we can just turn from Welsh to English, and use the language. I think putting Wales on the map is really exciting.

Next. Why Bang series 2 is worth binging. dark

All episodes of Bang series 2 are now streaming on Acorn TV. Watch now with a 7-day free trial.