Dr. AJ Austin is a new kind of role for Malcolm-Jamal Warner.
The Cosby Show alum currently stars as a series regular on The Resident, Fox’s medical drama toplined by Matt Czuchry and Emily Van Camp. Dr. Austin first appeared in season 1 as a recurring player, joining Chastain Memorial Hospital as a talented but volatile cardio-thoracic surgeon. Now he’s getting adjusted to the show’s daily rhythms, forming new bonds and settling into the hospital’s stresses.
Of course, for Warner, playing such a prickly personality isn’t exactly old hat for him. But he’s relishing the change of pace. “I get to play the guy I don’t allow myself to be in real life,” he said on the latest episode of PeopleTV’s Couch Surfing. But he then added that, deep inside himself, that man is “very much there.”
As to what fans might be able to expect of Dr. Austin in season 2? Warner either doesn’t know too much or isn’t willing to give too much away. “I don’t know how far they’re pursuing the [Dr. Okafor] relationship,” he teases of Austin’s ongoing flirtation with the surgical resident played by Shaunette Renée Wilson. “They haven’t given me all of that yet.” But trust that Warner is getting some good material in the episodes ahead: “We find out what makes him tick. There’s going to be some fun stuff coming.”
Watch the full Couch Surfing clip above.