Matt Czuchry doesn't like to lose. As Cary Agos — The Good Wife's deliciously multidimensional assistant state's attorney with a grudge — Czuchry (pronounced "zoo-cree") displays a fierce competitive streak. In person, the actor, 33, isn't much different — as he was only too happy to demonstrate over several merciless rounds of Skee-Ball at NYC arcade Dave & Buster's. What can we say? He's got game.
TV Guide Magazine: This season, viewers have seen a different side of Cary.
Czuchry: He's grown up quite a bit at the state's attorney's office. It's humbled him. Ambition is still at the root of who he is, but now we see more sincerity and vulnerability.
TV Guide Magazine: Like most of the characters in this series, he's a chameleon. Smarmy one moment, sympathetic the next.
Czuchry: That is the balancing act. When I get that right, people are invested.
TV Guide Magazine: Why does Cary have such a soft spot for his leather-clad former coworker Kalinda (Archie Panjabi)?
Czuchry: In the past, he's always been trying to get something out of the women in his life. With her, he's been her protector.
TV Guide Magazine: The Good Wife is such a grown-up show — is that the vibe on the set, or all you all running around with whoopee cushions?
Czuchry: First and foremost, it is a highly professional set. Everybody's working long hours and coming in 100 percent prepared. People push each other to have great moments.
TV Guide Magazine: Did you always know you'd be an actor?
Czuchry: In the fourth-grade talent show, my buddies and I dressed up like the California Raisins — they were big then! — and lip-synched. My sister said later, "I really believed that you thought you were a California Raisin." I took a theater class in college and loved it. When I graduated, there weren't other things speaking to me, so I moved out to Los Angeles.
TV Guide Magazine: And were you any good?
Czuchry: I doubt it. What I had was the benefit of having no clue that I didn't have any skill.
TV Guide Magazine: You landed a starring role in The WB's short-lived Young Americans, a few movies... then things got a little quiet.
Czuchry: It was the high and then that low. I was unemployed for two years. My fearlessness wore off and I had to figure out what it meant to be an actor. I started putting in the work necessary, and soon after that [the part of Logan on] Gilmore Girls happened.
TV Guide Magazine: You seem pretty private... How does being on a hit show suit you?
Czuchry: I am a very private person, but when you get recognized it's an opportunity to make somebody's day.
TV Guide Magazine: Why don't we ever see you in the tabloids, out trashing nightclubs?
Czuchry: I had the full college experience — and did all the things associated with that — but I got it out of my system at the right time and age. So I don't feel the need to do that now in my adult life. My priorities have changed.
TV Guide Magazine: So what's an ideal night then?
Czuchry: Probably going to the theater. I try to take in everything in New York, because I don't know how long I'm gonna be here. I didn't intend for that to be deep! Or playing video games at home.
TV Guide Magazine: Nerd alert!
Czuchry: [Laughs] Oh, man, yeah. I used to play a lot of Civilization Revolution. It's a strategy game that takes six to eight hours. You literally have to block off a full Sunday.
TV Guide Magazine: Any ladies in your life?
Czuchry: No. But I am looking. I want to be with somebody who could inspire me to get better in all aspects of my life, and whom I could do the same for. It's hard to find two people who match in that way.
TV Guide Magazine: You're a big believer in positive visualization, right? Any tips?
Czuchry: You can't sit back and let things happen for you. If you don't believe you're capable of something, then it's not gonna happen — either you won't put in the work or you won't realize when it is a real opportunity. Like my dad says: Have a five-year plan and adjust it every six months.