Dominic Cooper Explains How Preacher's Jesse Custer Differs From Other AMC Protagonists

AMC

There's a trend in television over the past several years. People love to watch a broken man. AMC is home to some of the most iconic examples of this trend, including Don Draper of Mad Men, Breaking Bad's Walter White, and even Rick Grimes on The Walking Dead.

Now Dominic Cooper is stepping into the shoes of AMC's latest potentially tragic hero, Jesse Custer. Does Jesse fit the same mold?

"I suppose he does," Cooper admits. "It's an interesting idea and question about why we're enjoying watching that. I suppose it's because we can relate more to it, because we all are in some way flawed. Even if we're not, we certainly think we have flaws in our own personality, or mistakes that we've made, or we're trying to be better than we actually are."

Cooper goes on to point out that a major difference between Custer and his peers comes from motivation.

"Don [Draper] works for an advertising agency," Cooper says. "This man, I am spiritually led. I have grown up believing in something, but have a huge guilt from my childhood. That in itself is a different story. It's another idea of why a man is broken. It's interesting and exciting to see a man or woman dealing with his or her demons and trying to do something good and better.

"He really, genuinely wants to bring this corrupt, dilapidated town that's at its knees to stand again," Cooper continues. "Resurrect and be wonderful and be the place he remembers his father taking care of, but it's really hard. I think it's a good reflection on the difference in society in a small town then and now in all our society. He's dealing with different people with different desires, and a different need for money.

"He wants to make it good. Whether that's all coming from his own guilt towards his father, I don't know yet. Where does that come from? He's trying to make peace with what he did, the things he did to his dad. Was he the cause of his father's downfall and death? He's trying to make that right. I think they're interesting complexities that we as humans like to watch, because we struggle with them. If we don't struggle with them much, we probably know that more struggles will come along at some point. It's interesting to see how people deal with them."

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Preacher premieres Sunday, May 22 at 10 ET on AMC.