Laura Vandervoort has been a bad girl.
Having played Smallville‘s Supergirl and barely cut her (reptilian) teeth as a malicious V, the actress this week gets wicked with two distinct TV roles, in the postponed final two episodes of Syfy’s Haven Season 3 (Thursday starting at 8/7c) and on CBS’ CSI: NY (Friday, 9/8c).
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On Haven, Vandervoort is playing James Cogan’s wife Arla, who has maintained her youthful essence via, no, not Kiehl’s, but “skinwalking.” Touting Arla as someone “the audience has been waiting to meet,” Vandervoort acknowledges that the character is “out for vengeance” but, more to the point, is “a true romantic who’s been hurt.”
“It’s about love for her,” Vandervoort explains. Recounting some backstory, she says, “Arla wanted to be with James, but then her troubles started happening, so her mother-in-law [Lucy] sort of betrayed her and left with her son, without me. So I’m out to get back at Audrey and to get my husband back” — if, as she suspects, James is in the Barn when it imminently rematerializes.
“Ideally in her mind, things will just be perfect if he can come back and Audrey can go away,” Vandervoort adds. “They can live happily ever after.” Uh-huh.
But in the name of skinwalking and compelling others (notably Audrey) to accept her “reunion” dream, Arla will need to get her hands quite dirty. “She is definitely a character people haven’t seen me play before, because she’s so dark and, like, twisted,” Vandervoort notes. “I’m a big fan of that sort of layered female character, but also the Tim Burton stuff. I love dark.”
Vandervoort came thisclose to going dark on ABC’s V, when extraterrestrial Lisa’s ferocious doppelgänger was introduced in what turned out to be the series finale. “Things were just getting really interesting for me when that ended,” she laments. “And I didn’t really get to do much of that in Smallville, because I was a goody-goody.”
On the topic of her Haven character’s special “skill,” we asked Vandervoort whose skin she would like to borrow. “That’s a little disturbing!” she starts, with a laugh. “But if it’s in terms of, like, ability and talent, I would want to trade skins — or, let’s call it ‘places’ — with Emma Stone, or Meryl Streep. And just because I think she’s got an amazing body, Jessica Biel.”
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CSI ♥ NY
Interestingly — and purely a coincidence of timing — Vandervoort also adopts different “looks” as a guest star on this week’s CSI: NY, playing a just-released convict named Macy Sullivan.
“CSI happened when I got back from [shooting the indie comedy] Cubicle Warriors,” she says. “Macy went to jail for two years, and when she gets out, she’s seeking vengeance — just like Arla — against somebody who sort of screwed her over.”
In addition to sharing scenes with series lead Gary Sinise, Vandervoort got to change up her appearance (and then some!) as the agenda-driven Macy. Including one that evokes a certain famous femme, “I have three different looks in the episode,” she reports, “so it was a lot of fun for me.”