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Comic-Con 2011: 'The Secret Circle's' Thomas Dekker on 'Twin Peaks' and Geeking Out over 'Tales From the Crypt'

The former "Terminator" actor recalls freezing in front of David Lynch at a signing and teases on what fans can expect from the upcoming CW supernatural series.

The Secret Circle
David Gray/The CW
"The Secret Sircle"

With hundreds of thousands of people attending San Diego Comic-Con every year and the July 20-24 event kicking off this week, The Hollywood Reporter chatted with the big names in television to discuss their favorite memories and tips for attending the annual event. THR’s Live Feed will talk Comic-Con with actors, writers and producers in the days leading up to the event so check back soon for interviews and the latest news on panels and screenings.

Thomas Dekker
Geek Cred:
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Heroes
Upcoming: CW’s The Secret Circle
Comic-Con panel: The Secret Circle, Saturday, 5:16-6 p.m., Room 6BCF.

THR: What stands out from your Comic-Con experience?
Dekker:
I’ve been three times, and it’s exciting because I’m a geek myself so I get to feel I’m there with my crowd. The first time I went was for Terminator; we were premiering the pilot of the show and I didn’t know what to expect. I was nervous but very proud of the series and it was one of those fly or die moments, where we knew if we weren’t a success at Comic-Con with the fans of the films that our show wasn’t going to be a success. Fortunately, we had a standing ovation.

THR: What’s your geekiest Comic-Con story?
Dekker:
I had a couple friends with me my first year there, and was walking around the Con and I’m a big fan of the old Tales From the Crypt comic books and one of the main artists from the original comics was there and I completely freaked out and went over and picked up the t-shirt, got a picture with him and got autographed copies of the comics. My friends mocked me to no end. That’s the spirit of the Con: for people who have a deeply innate adoration for something and they get to experience that in person. It’s the Taj Mahal of being a dork, and I love it.

THR: What panel would you stand in line all day to see?
Dekker:
I would camp out for at least a day if there was a Twin Peaks reunion panel. That show is definitely my greatest television obsession. I went to a signing with David Lynch once and had all these funny and intelligent things I planned to say to him and just froze. All I could say was, “thank you.” I was overwhelmed.

Comic-Con 2011: Full THR Coverage

THR: What would you ask at that panel?
Dekker:
I would ask what a lot of fans would ask – what does the series finale mean?! Please inform me of what my favorite show is all about because I’m still confused!

THR: Who would be on your dream panel?
Dekker:
I’d love to see a panel of talented female comedians at Comic-Con: Kristen Wiig, Jennifer Saunders, Julia Davis, Amy Poehler and Tina Fey.

THR: What makes for a successful panel?
Dekker:
I like when there’s a great sizzle reel of things to come, plus as much as the cast and creative team there and a clever reveal is great. You want to give away enough to excite people but you don’t want to give away so much that there’s no point in them tuning in later.

THR: What questions do you recommend fans not ask at panels?
Dekker:
I feel bad when they ask questions that they’re the only person in the room who cares about the answer. You start to feel bad for the other people who have questions that the majority of those in the room would rather hear the answer to. I was at a convention recently and the panel was asked what our favorite pizza toppings were.

THR: If you were to attend in costume, what would you be?
Dekker:
I’d like to go in as a giant Lego figure. You’d have to create giant Lego arms and a head but you’d get some hoots for having a good outfit – and you wouldn’t be recognized.

THR: What are you most looking forward to this year at Comic-Con?
Dekker:
To go with a new show and see how we’re received there. My experience at Comic-Con has either been very sci-fi or horror, and I think Secret Circle will be a different crowd. Since our show is about witches, hopefully we’ll have some wiccans in attendance.

THR: How does your character, Adam, fit in with all the witches on Secret Circle?
Dekker:
There are six characters and in the pilot we’re all cut out as very specific people even though we all have this bloodline of witchcraft that has been handed down for generations. Some of us want to use it for evil, some for excitement. My character is a nice guy who has this faith that he wants to use for the best that he can. He’s trying to keep a cool head attitude among the coven. What I think is most exciting about the series is that all of us go through big changes due to a lack of control over our powers. Characters you might think are villainous in the beginning and heroic might be slowly switched over time. It’s one of the reasons I was drawn to the role.

THR: Is romance ahead for Adam and Cassie (Britt Robertson)?
Dekker:
Absolutely. One of the biggest catalysts for a shift in the coven’s personality is the entrance of Cassie. Everything is flipped upside down.

Email: Lesley.Goldberg@thr.com; Twitter: @Snoodit