If you're having a really boring day & are interested in being made even more bored by an actor talking about things...then why don't you ask this actor questions ranging from acting to toilet bowls? My wife is laughing at me, she thinks I'm an idiot of sorts. So I was in Flash Point, Queer As Folk, Monk, DaVinci's Inquest, The Sixth Day, Forever Knight, Dead Like Me, Law & Order, The Bride of Chucky (but i was mostly cut out of that - I couldn't act as well as the dolls), and I play detective Sam Swarek on ABC's Rookie Blue.

Victoria's helping me get started. AmA!


Edit: All the talk of food has reminded Victoria that it's her lunchtime. Thank you guys for your questions. They are always really good ones and I appreciate it. Thank you for your dedication and enjoying the show so much, and I hope that next season meets & exceeds your expectations. :)

Comments: 216 • Responses: 42  • Date: 

nadinemalak148 karma

You might not remember this but was the ponytail tug scripted or was that your own personal touch?

Ben_Bass7 karma

I think it would be funny if I wore a wig and pulled my own ponytail, but that definitely didn't happen.

That was most definitely not scripted. And I loved they kept it in, even though I'm a little surprised that they did, but I think that's very cool.

Jillian89478 karma

First of all I LOVE YOU and Swarek, of course. My question is who do you hang out with on set? Are you guys all friends outside of RB?

Ben_Bass7 karma

I spend a lot of time with Matt Gordon when I can. I don't have a lot of downtime.

lmi66 karma

Hi, Ben! Thanks for doing this AMA. I'm a huge fan of Rookie Blue. What's your favorite song, and what has been your favorite episode of Rookie Blue so far? Also, what's your favorite ice cream (since Andy says that everyone has a favorite)?

Ben_Bass6 karma

Two of my favorite songs that I always enjoy listening to are Sin City by AC/DC and Hysteria by Def Leppard, and my all-time favorite episode to film so far - I think the funnest one to film was probably episode 110 where Andy and I head up to Sudbury (you will all remember this), that was probably one of the funnest episodes to film, and dramatically, I really enjoyed 213 and I think it was 506, Two Truths & a Lie, because I got to work with two great directors and two fabulous actors, Callum Rennie and Nick Campbell.

Ben_Bass7 karma

Other than everything? Pistachio, Hazelnut, Chocolate, Strawberry, Lemon Gelato, Chocolate Gelato (gelato being distinguished by its not being so high in fat content), Neapolitan, Dulce de Leche, then Vanilla Bean, then Rocky Road, Cheesecake, Banana (i'm going out on a limb here a little bit, but not too much), Peanut Butter, and I just want to put this in here to confuse people - Kimchi.

spladarpidus6 karma

When you guys are filming do you ever get mistaken as real cops?

Ben_Bass13 karma

One of the funny things that I used to do when Sam was in uniform was to stop traffic while going to get a coffee when we were shooting on location.. so yes is the answer to that question.

kazza1696 karma

So I noticed Sam playing with his badge before confronting his dad in prison. Was that something that was scripted or your own personal touch?

Ben_Bass5 karma

No, it wasn't scripted. That's a funny thing. It came out there, in that scene, although I haven't seen that episode, and it also came out - funnily enough - in the scene with my old training officer in last season. So it must be an instinctive minor psychological gesture that I have yet to discover the meaning of.

alyssalauren146 karma

Favorite McSwarek moment?

Ben_Bass12 karma

Missy and I have good chemistry as actors, so it's always fun to play the banter-y scenes with her. Having said that, the dramatic scenes also work well for us, but i would say I have the most fun doing the banter-y scenes. So there isn't one that's a favorite, those are all really fun to do. If i had to choose one, i really can't... I can't.

sourgummysharks5 karma

Hiii! Okay, I’m taking one for the team here and asking on behalf of the [McSwarek] fandom:

How DAAAARE they imply that Sam impregnated anyone but his beloved McNally?! We're distressed! We have been waiting for 5 baby McSwareks!

You must give us something that’ll tide us over until next year. Please!!

Ben_Bass2 karma

I knew that the idea of Sam impregnating another human being would be anathema for the fans.

And I admit to taking a certain amount of delight in the negative, visceral affect that discovering Marlo's pregnancy would manifest for certain die-hard fans. Having said that, my heart goes out to those of you who are disturbed, and I assure you that appropriate countermeasures are being taken to mitigate this distressing discovery's long-term consequences. :p

dcjeffrey1 karma

You delight in our pain??? ;P

Okay, that being said...about how long into season 6 do we have to suffer before my distress is mitigated? When do we find out who the father is?

Ben_Bass4 karma

Oooooooooooh the father....



I think you'll find out (DEEP BREATH)

at some point in the future.

asteroidfarnsworth3 karma

What is something in particular you'd absolutely HAVE to see happen between San and Andy (besides babies/marriage/etc) before RB ends?

Ben_Bass5 karma

I think it would be fun to see them have to go hand-to-hand with a couple of tough perpetrators, like if you got to see them get into a scrap - he's got somebody he has to handle, she's got somebody she's got to handle, we get to waste both of them. I think that would be fun to see.

sourgummysharks3 karma

Asking on behalf of my friend Raquel:

"Given the passion and dedication of fans to McSwarek, do you see a happy ending in season 6 that will satisfy the fans?"

Ben_Bass5 karma

Well, I don't know what is going to satisfy the fans short of an adorable house with a white picket fence & 2.5 children and a green lawn with red roses on the fringe, or fringed by red roses, and blue skies. :)

Seriously, I think that the writers are very keen to make it challenging for the audience but ultimately satisfying, and I believe they're going to pull that off. So from where we're currently at, shooting the current season, things look pretty good...

Snowball772 karma

So Ben How was your birthday? Did ya do anything special for it?

Ben_Bass2 karma

As I said in my little short movie that I made for the fans, I'm not a birthday guy, I'm the type of person that pretends that there's no such thing as birthdays. So having said that, my dear wife purchased a whole block of cupcakes that were brought to set which I distributed, and enjoyed 3 of them myself. Which is one of the best birthday presents you can get.

unicorn10-102 karma

What is your favorite animal?

Ben_Bass6 karma

Uh....I like bears. I always liked bears as a kid. Do I like animals? My wife is telling me that I like guppies, and that's because her nickname is "guppy" so I would say the guppy is my favorite animal now.

GetFreeCash2 karma

Hi Ben! What do you miss most about Vancouver, Canada? And what's your favourite James Bond movie?

Ben_Bass7 karma

I miss the mountains in British Columbia. Whenever I get a chance to go into the mountains, it makes me feel really in touch with myself and the world. I feel most alive & the happiest, I would say, when I'm in the mountains. And probably part of the reason for that is because I grew up spending so much time in the mountains of BC, and they were a haven for me. It was just a very fulfilling time and place for me, so I will always have that connection to nature and specifically the mountains.

Oh yeah, favorite Bond film is hard. I really loved Skyfall, I thought it was excellent, and I will always love Moonraker. And Sean Connery - I'm not naming any of his films, but Sean Connery was, I would say, for best Bond - it would be a tie between Daniel Craig & Sean Connery.

iamjennyhuang2 karma

How do you think Andy has grown these past seasons?

Ben_Bass3 karma

I think she's grown a lot, in different ways. Specifically, for Sam, he feels that she is a little bit more relaxed, and open, and she is really bringing her commitment to the table, which is what you have to do in a relationship - you have to do that, it's all about commitment, as Goethe said.

dcjeffrey2 karma

If you and Matty B Gordon could remake any ‘buddy’ movie or TV show, which would you pick?

Ben_Bass3 karma

Midnight Run! For sure.

vixenali2 karma

Buenas tardes (good afternoon) Ben!! I was in shock after I saw 511 (which hasn't aired in the US yet) and it took me a few days to calm down, but I have and I want the rest of the episodes sooner than later :) But here's a question related to you but not acting so much: Who was your celeb crush when you were a teenager? Do you have a celeb crush currently? ;) Can I suggest you play Elvis Costello's "Alison" on your guitar? (no? haha)

Ben_Bass5 karma

I'm just going to start by answering the last part first: Elvis Costello lived above my theater school friend in London, and he was a very friendly guy. I'd be happy to learn his song, if I had time.

And I used to have a major crush on Farrah Fawcett. And now I have two current celebrity crushes: one is Laura Carswell, and the second one is Colin Firth.

Ali_Parker172 karma

Hi Ben! Here are some random questions: Boxers or Briefs? Socks or barefoot? Coffee or tea? Beach or mountains? Mani or pedi?

Ben_Bass3 karma

Boxers. Boxer briefs!


BOTH!! but decaf mostly.

BOTH!! For sure!!!


A_huge_waffle2 karma

What is your favorite brand of vacuum cleaner?

Ben_Bass2 karma

OOOH. Tough question.

I'm very picky when it comes to vacuum cleaners! And the vacuum cleaner that I have, I maintain in excellent condition (this is true).

I think Electrolux makes a very good vacuum, but my personal vacuum brand is Miele.

gina08212 karma

They are seriously implying that Sam got Marlo pregnant?!? That just can't happen. It seemed like something Sam and Andy will have major trouble getting over, especially Andy. It will crush her! There's tapping the line and the totally running over it. If Sam did her Marlo pregnant, it would seem like it happened AFTER he told oliver he dreamed about a life with Andy. How is that true to Sam's character? Wouldn't that diminish everything he said?

Ben_Bass3 karma

You have been deeply affected by this turn of events. While it would be helpful to clarify the timeline, if Sam is the father, conception would have happened around the time Marlo started going off her meds. That's actually a known fact, that she did go off her meds. Therefore, as far as where Sam was at at the time, this happened during the period that Andy and Nick had gotten together, effectively, so it really didn't seem (at the time) like there was going to be any McSwarek on the horizon ever again. Whoaa there's a painful thought...

Sakura_71 karma

Who is your favorite superhero?

Ben_Bass6 karma

Iron Man!

DougieDancing1 karma

Hey, Ben! The season finale for Rookie Blue is this Thursday! Is there anyyyything you can tell us about it? :) - Rachel

Ben_Bass4 karma


I have seen the episode, and the performance of our guest star is (according to Charlotte Sullivan, and me, as well) is one of the best guest performances we've ever had. And there is a painful, unexpected ugly twist - there are two twists! - at the end...

ampersana1 karma

Hey Ben! Hope your doing well 😃 Just wanted to ask who are your favourites to work with on set (Rookie Blue)? And do you have any other projects lined up?

Ben_Bass2 karma

I hope people aren't getting tired of me saying that all of the cast on our show are really easy, fun, talented, supportive people. It's probably never gonna happen again, that I get to work on a show where there is so much camaraderie and genuine support & generosity. So that being the case it doesn't matter who I'm working with, we all get a kick out of working with each other, we love each other, and we love working with each other.

Right now, I'm just focused on getting to the end of this season of RB and preparing to get HAMLET going in New York next year.

nadinemalak141 karma

What has been the funniest moment on set of rookie blue for you?

Ben_Bass3 karma

Well, basically, all Matt Gordon has to do is show his face and make a joke, and it's going to make my week.

saysay131 karma

What other show would you want to work on? besides Rookie Blue of course :)

Ben_Bass5 karma

I would never be cast on it, but I think it would be wonderful and incredibly enjoyable to do an interesting part on Game of Thrones where i was able to sword fight, because that was one of the things i was really good at in theater school and I rarely get a chance to do it!

McGillygully1 karma

Do you play any sport? Or watch sport? What's your fav? x

Ben_Bass2 karma

I like watching football but I rarely get a chance to do it. I will always go out of my way to watch tennis, particularly Wimbledon, we've been lucky to go 3 times. Tennis is a big one. And in terms of playing sports, not so much but I love skiing which I grew up doing and recently rediscovered. And I LOVE Scuba diving, but I don't it's a sport.

ayala911851 karma

Hi Ben thanks for doing this you are the best. what is your dream vacation?

Ben_Bass2 karma

there are 2 parts to it: I would dearly love to take the Orient Express the entire route there and back, in whatever incarnation it is, and that would be after having taken one of those incredible river board cruises up one of those European rivers like the Danube.

jelchek1 karma

Hi Ben! First of all, tnx for doing this. It's really nice of you :) So here is my question: If you could have one superpower what would it be, and why? Greetings from Croatia :)

Ben_Bass2 karma

It would be to fly, just me, I could walk out the door and start flying, at incredibly high speeds, without it hurting my eyeballs, nose and mouth - and ears!

iamjennyhuang1 karma

what kind of obstacles will McSwarek face in season 6?

Ben_Bass3 karma

The ones that I can speak about are obstacles that have to do with turmoil at work - as opposed to in the relationship, which I can't talk about. And the challenges I am referring to are large and complicated.

zuzana051 karma

does your wife watch Rookie Blue?

Ben_Bass5 karma

Occasionally, when I let her. :)

Grant11871 karma

If you were on a island and could only eat one thing the entire year your living there what would it be?

Ben_Bass1 karma

If I was on an island - the implication is that it's not based on what you find on an island, but you would be restricted to one thing - it would be really good pasta.

dlupcoop1 karma

How did you end up auditioning for the role of sam swareck? Did tassie have this role in mind for you?

Ben_Bass3 karma

Yes - Tassie paid me the great compliment of telling me she always heard my voice when she was writing for Sam. Tassie and I had worked together numerous times before that, most notably on Would Be Kings because that was her baby. And Alana Frank & David Wellington wanted me to be a part of the project, the networks needed me to audition, and I did several times, and they finally said yes, and that was that.

BrainArrow1 karma

Hey, what's your favorite condiment?

Ben_Bass1 karma

Frank's red hot's pretty good.

truerookiebluefan1 karma

I know how you proposed to your wife, but How did you and your wife meet?

Ben_Bass3 karma

My wife and I were introduced to each other by a mutual friend in Vancouver while she was studying theater, and it started out purely platonic, but then she came to New York where I was living for a visit and asked me to show her around, and one thing led to another, and we found ourselves on a (literally) marathon date in New York City complete with a thunderstorm in Madison Square Park, actually, where we got caught in the rain a la Woody Allen's MANHATTAN. At the end of said date, we bumped noses and had a little smooch. And the rest is history.

Ben_Bass1 karma

My wife and I were introduced to each other by a mutual friend in Vancouver while she was studying theater, and it started out purely platonic, but then she came to New York where I was living for a visit and asked me to show her around, and one thing led to another, and we found ourselves on a (literally) marathon date in New York City complete with a thunderstorm in Madison Square Park, actually, where we got caught in the rain a la Woody Allen's MANHATTAN. At the end of said date, we bumped noses and had a little smooch. And the rest is history.

sprinx_1 karma

What's it like working with Missy Peregrym?

Ben_Bass6 karma

We have very different approaches to our work, and she's been very patient with me and putting up with my sometimes rather bizarre and intense methods (which I'm very grateful for). And now, we know each other as actors so well that there's an easiness and a kind of confidence that we both have when we approach the work that it's something we're both grateful for - we focus on getting the words right, and not the other person handling it, because we have a lot of trust in each other.

mtlarmymom1 karma

Hi Ben! Love you for doing this. It's Army mom from Montreal. One time you said in an episode "Didn't you ever hear the expression don't shoot where you sleep" to Andy. Was that improved? It seemed so natural.

Ben_Bass1 karma

I honestly can't remember. Certainly our writers are clever enough to have thought of something like that, but it could have been either/ or. That's the best I got on that one.

zuzana051 karma

hello Ben, i love your videos with guitar. what's your favorite band or song? your big fan from Holland

Ben_Bass2 karma

Another favorite band is ZZ top, and the song is Jesus Just Left Chicago.

dcjeffrey1 karma

Have Sam and Andy discussed his past anymore since the night she met his father? Have they heard from Sarah?

Ben_Bass3 karma

I think Yes is the answer to that question. These types of discussions happen frequently off-camera. The writers, I believe, would like the audience to infer that the relationships are evolving even when we're not seeing that happen on-screen, so in between episodes or scenes, I think that the writers, as happens in real-life, these characters have full lives and when they are in relationships with each other, those relationships continue and develop and grow, and I think ultimately yes is the answer to that question.

stacey790 karma

Hope you had a wonderful birthday Ben! And thank you for doing this chat! :) I felt bad for Sam when Andy didn’t accept the key to his place and how she was so flippant about it. How does Sam feel about it? And will we see her finally accept the key early on in the next 11 episodes?

Ben_Bass4 karma

Sam was extremely upset because he paid $1.17 for the copy of the key that he had made. And $1.17 these days can go a long way towards purchasing many useful items, such as saving up for a new cell phone cover, a cheap bicycle lock from a dollar store, a whole carton of Kleenex, or four and a half guitar picks. His feelings were extremely hurt and it might be cause for a breakup. But I'm inclined to think that at the end of the day, he might, next time he sees her face and her charming smile, he will just have to forgive her and find a way to work it out.

SpiffierGoose60 karma

what's your favourite color?

Ben_Bass2 karma

Blue and green. But blue of the sky and green of deciduous trees in early-mid-June.

CrazyAlien130 karma

Any more info on your play in New York next year? When it might be? I know you were having problems finding a venue...maybe move it to MA or NH ;)

Ben_Bass2 karma

Well, we very well may have to end up doing that! :) In the meantime, we are currently looking for a good venue in New York and I hope that we will find one - our preferred date of first performance is Mid-September 2015. We're doing a very modern, unconventional, crazy dangerous version of HAMLET - HAMLET raw and unleashed.