After seven seasons of sexually transmitted comedy, Californication's vice-ridden writer Hank Moody is hanging up his black T-shirt (Sunday, June 29, 9:30/8:30c, Showtime). While Golden Globe—winning star David Duchovny admits "there's some sadness" to saying goodbye to the role, "I feel good. [Executive producer] Tom Kapinos did a great job pulling everything together."
Next month, Duchovny begins shooting NBC's Aquarius, playing a cop tracking Charles Manson, which marks the X-Files vet's return to creepy TV. "We'll be pushing the limit," he says. "It will be as dark as a network show can be."
But before that, we asked him to look back on some of his favorite times in the Californication sun.
1. The moment in the pilot when Hank realizes the girl he slept with was Mia (Madeline Zima), the 16-year-old daughter of his ex's fiancé. "That announced that the show would go to a place other shows wouldn't, especially a comedy," Duchovny says. "As an actor, that hooked me. Tom Kapinos had created a hero who would do really s---ty things."
2. Season 3's wordless final scene when Hank comes clean to on-off girlfriend Karen (Natascha McElhone) about Mia. With just Elton John's "Rocket Man" playing over her horrified reaction, the actors were directed to improvise the heartrending scene. "It's one of those moments when it's just two actors and you have to trust. Natascha was such a wonderful partner in that way."
3. Of the many scenes he shared with his on-screen daughter (Madeleine Martin), it's the one when he sang Bob Dylan's "If You See Her, Say Hello" to a heartbroken Becca in Season 1 that stands out: "That was a beautiful moment."
4. "I loved working with Callum Rennie," Duchovny says of his off-screen buddy, citing Season 2's tussle with Rennie's music producer Lew Ashby. "We had a little fistfight because he liked Karen. We ended up punching each other in the butts and rolling around. We thought it was the funniest thing."
5. Charlie and Marcy's wedding during rocker Atticus Fetch's Season 6 finale concert. "I had a great time with Tim Minchin," Duchovny says of the comedian's musical guest spot. He also credits the happy couple (Evan Handler and Pamela Adlon) for being able to make it though Minchin's improvs.