Robin Lord Taylor Talks New Organized Crime Role and Being a Part of Law & Order Multiverse
Robin Lord Taylor is no stranger to the Law & Order franchise and has appeared in several of the franchise's mainline series. Now Taylor is back for a new recurring role in Law & Order's latest spinoff Organized Crime as hacktivist Sebastian McClane. Taylor made his debut on last week's episode, and fans are eager to see what else he gets up to and how he fits into the back and forth between Elliot Stabler and Richard Wheatley. ComicBook.com had the chance to talk to Taylor all about his new role and being a part of the Law & Order Multiverse, starting with just who Sebastian is and the sort of Robin Hood complex he has.
"Yeah, very much so. He was honorably discharged from the military and went into data systems, and then through some personal family tragedy, he ended up finding himself becoming essentially a hacktivist," Taylor said. And then he would hack large banks, large financial institutions, and then redistribute the money to random people out there in the world who needed it. So yeah, he became sort of this legendary kind of Robin Hood figure in the internet, in the dark web."
Sebastian has used some of those funds to do positive things like pay off people's student loans, but the method and an accidental death are what brought him to this point.
"It's the method, and then also, I mean, and we explored this in the episode last week, we learned that because of his hacktivism, it led to the death of a security guard," Taylor said. "And so, that is why he was why he was ultimately convicted and locked away, one of the big reasons on top of the financial crimes he was committing."
"Essentially, he's a tragic character. He is a good, good person, and because of the hardships that he's gone through, he has not succeeded," Taylor said. "He is in a really bad place. It just takes a psychotic villain, like Richard Wheatley played by the incomparable Dylan McDermott, to get him out of jail and back in the world."
Because of his new relationship with Wheatley, he is now squarely in the sights of Stabler, but just because he is in Wheatley's circle doesn't mean he is looking for the same things, and he has his own way of handling Wheatley to his own ends.
"He very much is. He is a good person. He's not like Richard Wheatley. He's not cynical. He believes in people, and so, he's caught, like you said, right in the middle," Taylor said. "Because Wheatley got him out of prison, he has to answer to Wheatley. But then at the same time, he's a very smart person himself. So he and Wheatley are both sort of using each other and doing this really, really fun dance. Both of them need each other but also don't necessarily trust each other."
Taylor is loving working opposite someone like McDermott, who is truly reveling in this villainous role. That's a type of role Taylor knows well from his Gotham days as Oswald Cobblepot (aka Penguin), and now he gets to be on the other side of those scenes.
"Yeah, it's really fun. Again, working with Dylan is just awesome. He has these just delicious scenes where he comes in and he has that confidence of a super villain. He just has that thing," Taylor said. "From my years on Gotham, it's just so fun to be on the other side, watching the villain come in about to mess stuff up and make waves. It's just been an amazing experience."
The Organized Crime team also has their own hacker and tech expert in Jet Slootmaekers, and we wanted to know if we can look forward to more back and forth between them as the series moves along.
"Well, I mean, yeah. I can say, as you saw in the last episode on last Thursday, once they say Sebastian McLane, she's like, 'Constantine.' She knows everything about him. There is just a genuine respect that people have for Sebastian and what he was able to do," Taylor said. "Not just in terms of the generosity and the charity of it all that he was doing. It's also just, he's a genius at writing code. I don't want to say too much, but I think of course, Jet knows all about him. So there's fun stuff coming up,"
So far Taylor has been a part of Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, and now Organized Crime, but Taylor added that while this is "the third show" he's been part of, "this is actually my fifth time in the Law and Order multiverse, number five." This time around though Taylor will play a recurring part in the series as opposed to one-episode arcs, which he couldn't be happier about, and filming in New York makes the experience even better.
"Just in general, Organized Crime, it's not procedural in that the episodes are not standalone. It all goes right through. That in and of itself is different this time around," Taylor said. "I mean, I guess it's so much better because it's my first job back in New York City where I live. There are crew members that worked on Gotham that work on this. There's nothing like a New York crew. There's nothing like the people out here that I get to work with. That's been probably one of my favorite things about this job and that it's just being back in New York and working with people and working with some people that I was on Gotham with. It's just awesome."
Those who watch Law & Order know that the franchise has been crossing over quite a bit lately, and now the original series is making a return and could present even more crossover opportunities. Just being part of that Law & Order multiverse is fun for Taylor, and he couldn't be more impressed by how much work goes into making it all happen.
"The ADs who plan these schedules, I tip my hat to them," Taylor said. "The coordinating all of this stuff is just wild, and then to also be doing it during a pandemic. I mean, it's really remarkable what they're doing. And the fact that they're able to keep hundreds of people working still and working safely, it's just an incredible feat. Of course, the crew gets to play on both shows, and so, everyone's like, oh, we're going over to SVU. It's just very exciting. I don't know. It feels like a multiverse kind of thing. It really does."
Fans will get to see more of Sebastian in tonight's new episode, and Taylor teases what might be in store.
"Wheatley is using McLane to get what he wants done, and McLane is using Wheatley," Taylor said. "He has things that he wants to take care of. He carries a lot of guilt because of what happened to the security guard who died because of his actions. He has things in his life that he needs to address. And so, he and Wheatley are going to continue this dance. We'll see how their relationship changes, I guess, is really where we're going with this. Also, the amazing Tamara Taylor who plays Angela Wheatley, she's coming back. She and McLane do meet each other as well. He gets to meet the whole family."
You can watch the new episode tonight when it airs on NBC at 10 PM EST/9 PM CST.
What did you think of Taylor's Organized Crime debut? Let us know in the comments or as always you can talk all things Law & Order with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!0comments