Not surprisingly, many cast members of 9-1-1: Lone Star were thrilled when they got the chance to portray first responders and emergency personnel. Not only is it an exciting role, but they also get to pay homage to some of the bravest people in our society. Jim Parrack was one of these actors that felt a connection to his role.
On the show, Parrack portrays Judd Ryder, a Texas-native firefighter that survived a deadly explosion that killed most of his old crew. Our first impression of Ryder was that he was hesitant to accept anyone into the fire family. This included the new captain, Owen Strand (Rob Lowe). However, as we got to know Ryder, he began to soften and show his more vulnerable side. Now, he’s a pivotal part of the team that epitomizes the strength and bravery needed for the job.
From the moment Parrack caught wind of the opening for the role of Ryder, he knew this was an opportunity of a lifetime. Now that he’s a regular on 9-1-1: Lone Star, the actor took the time to reflect on his character with Assignment X in a recent interview.
“When the opportunity came, the feeling was a strong one of, this is a really good thing to get familiar with and get to act,” Parrack shared. “I think I like comfort far too much to pluck it out as a life choice for myself. My admiration for these people and what they do has gone through the roof, and the kind of courage that they have, and the willingness they have to do what has to be done, is something we’ll probably only ever approximate with the acting. There’s no way [without doing it in reality] to really know what that’s like.”
‘9-1-1: Lone Star’ Actor Discusses His Texas Accent
Parrack, himself, is a Texan, too, born and raised in the town of Allen. His background includes some stage work, a few big movies like Fury and Suicide Squad and even a role in the True Blood series. His accent has played into some roles in the past, but none quite like his character on 9-1-1: Lone Star. In fact, Parrack even admitted that he exaggerated his twang for the part.
“For the audition, I read the sides, and it seemed very apparent that this was someone who, part of their identity was how proud they were of being a Texan. So I just had an instinct for that,” Parrack said.
But don’t take that to mean that Texans deliberately overdo the accent. Rather, Parrack explained the accent is stronger in “somebody who happens to like the way life shaped them.”
The prouder they are of their roots, the stronger the twang. And with how strong Ryder’s accent is on the show, it’s clear he’s a true-blue Texan.