Tim Kring Answers the Big Question in Touch: Will Kiefer Sutherland Always Save the Day?
David Mazouz and Kiefer Sutherland
Will Kiefer Sutherland always save the day?
Viewers who tuned into the premiere of his newest series Touch watched as his character Martin Bohm pieced together a puzzle indirectly given to him by his autistic son Jake (David Mazouz). By the end of the hour, Martin, like Sutherland's Jack Bauer, connected the dots in the nick of time, saving a young boy from a bomb, reuniting a grieving couple and leading a lottery winner to save a bunch of kids from a burning bus. But will each episode always end with "phew!"? Creator and executive producer Tim Kring sounds off on what you can expect.
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There will be a lot of happy endings. Can Martin and Jake really save the day at the end of every episode? Kring has already said Touch will be "unapologetically feel-good." So while some stories will be more bittersweet than others, the show "wants to lean in the direction of feeling good. There's something about stories coming together [and] I can't help but say that I do lean towards wanting to put out a message that is emotional and makes you feel something."
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Don't expect flashbacks to Martin's wife just yet. Martin lost her in 9/11, but Kring has no plans to return to a time when she was alive. "It's very difficult to do because we're getting farther and farther away," he says. "You now have an actor who'd have to play [Martin] 11 years younger, which is possible, but we've got nothing in the works right now."
Romance? No time while you're solving life-changing puzzles with your mute son. Martin may be working very closely with Clea, a single social worker, but don't assume they'll get together by season's end. "The relationship between Clea and Martin is a very symbiotic relationship around Jake, but she is both an ally and a bit of an obstacle because she represents the interest of the state, so it's complicated," Kring says. "There is certainly chemistry between the actors but there's also a lot on Martin's plate. So romance might not be one of them."
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No, Jake isn't going to magically regain his speech. Did Jake have a breakthrough in the pilot by hugging his dad or was he just trying to grab the phone from his back pocket? "We wanted to plant that question mark," Kring says. "I am going caution the audience [because] we don't want to give any false idea of what that progression is like in reality. It'll happen in very small and incremental movements. What we'll find is that there are other ways that they start to communicate and Martin will see there are more and more ways to understand him."
Orange soda will be very important moving forward. Yes, seriously! Kring wanted an Easter egg for the audience to seek out week to week. "The orange soda is a way to have an identifiable prop go between the multiple stories being told. As the show moves forward you'll see it."
Touch airs on Thursday at 9/8c on Fox. Watch a clip below: