Have y’all had a chance to tune in to THEM: THE SCARE on Prime Video — it’s hands down the most incredible performance from Luke James we’ve ever seen — and he’s playing a character that is far from the heartthrob role!

'Them: The Scare' production stills

Source: Quantrell Colbert / Amazon MGM Studios

Set in 1991, THEM: THE SCARE stars James as a struggling actor Edmund Gaines, who is pushed to the verge of a mental breakdown by constant rejection, both professionally and socially. Meanwhile the main storyline focuses on LAPD Detective Dawn Reeve (Deborah Ayorinde) who is investigating the gruesome murder of a foster home mother that has left even the most hardened detectives shaken. Navigating a tumultuous time in Los Angeles, with a city on the razor’s edge of chaos, Dawn is determined to stop the killer. But as she draws closer to the truth, something ominous and malevolent grips her and her family… Gaines emerges as the most likely suspect — but is he truly the one responsible? Or is there an even more sinister force to blame?


As you can see from the trailer, Luke’s character Edmund is super intense, but when we spoke to James about transforming for the role, the actor said he tapped into his own experience as an only child to “tell the truth” in the Little Marvin limited series.

“The references I drew from were were my own life, just telling the truth ,just tapping into some of the inner child in me that wants to be seen and wants to be loved and heard,” James told BOSSIP of his transformation into Gaines. “Also the childlike ability of just mimicking things that I saw on TV that would get people moving and smiling and laughing and getting attention. I just tapped into that only child syndrome of mine. It was just about telling the truth really. I just had to lean into the world that Little Marvin created. He created a very safe space for me, for all of us, and I just had to trust that I just went with it and I had a ball.”

'Them: The Scare' production stills

Source: Quantrell Colbert / Amazon MGM Studios

James also defended the character’s onscreen unraveling, sharing how he could relate to Edmund’s frustrations that come from constant rejection in his pursuit of an acting career.

“I think what we’re watching is the man who is alone in this world searching for purpose and and reason and also trying to do everything in his power that he knows how to receive love, but nothing’s enough,” James explained. “As an actor, it just feels like constant rejection right? Auditioning and stuff. He obviously chose a particular career that is nothing but rejection, but he’s been receiving rejection his entire life. What can that do to a person, being by yourself all that time and never to hear someone say ‘I love you’ and ‘I care for you,’ and ‘How are you today?’ and things like that. What can that do to a person?”

In some ways ‘THEM: THE SCARE’ serves as a villain origin story for Gaines, whose deterioration slowly unfolds for viewers.

“I think yes this is definitely an origin story for Edmund,” James told BOSSIP. “I think hopefully it creates space for people to just say, ‘Hey how are you?’ and really mean it.”

James added that, as an actor, he could related to a lot of Edmund’s frustrations.

“You never know what people want, especially when you’re new at it,” James said. “You’re just trying… sometimes you might come in a costume and with props and stuff like that and you just you don’t know because you’re just trying to shoot your best shot, when it’s a lot less and it’s just about the words right? We all had to go through that in the first bits of auditioning — that embarrassment and that let down and ‘I don’t want to talk to anyone after this’ bad audition – you just want to scream and be by yourself.”

'Them: The Scare' production stills

Source: Quantrell Colbert / Amazon MGM Studios

One thing that’s abundantly clear after watching THEM: THE SCARE is that Luke James is no longer in the early phase of his acting career. In fact the Prime Video series has made it clear that he’s in his prime and we’re looking forward to seeing what’s next for him. Hopefully an Emmy because he knocked this one out of the park!

All eight episodes of THEM: THE SCARE are streaming on Prime Video now.


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