Sporting a new look and getting the word out on his method for killing strigoi, Dr. Ephraim "Eph" Goodweather is a busy man on FX's The Strain. Daily Dead recently took part in a conference call with the equally busy actor who plays Eph—Corey Stoll—who discussed his character's alcoholism in the vampire apocalypse and growing up near Christopher Reeve in real life.

Stoll on how Eph's quest to kill The Master is both professional and personal:

"It’s really both. Obviously it’s personal now that Kelly has turned and is actively trying to turn Zach, but I think just his personality is such, too, that he’s won at everything pretty much in his life, up till now. Now he’s in a situation where he’s lost more in the last week than he has in his entire life. He’s always been a very alpha guy and very type A. He’s been knocked down numerous pegs and is admitting such, but he still can’t let go on either front, so it’s personal but it’s also professional."

On being relieved to have the "Eph wig" in the rearview mirror now that Eph has a clean-shaven appearance:

"Yes, I’m relieved and I spoke about this at the TCAs that it was a distraction for the audience. It’s unfortunate, and there’s an unfortunate bargain that every actor has to make; the more you work the more recognizable you are. That can be helpful in getting you more work, but it’s detrimental to your job as an actor because you’re less able to disappear into the role.

I can see why someone like Johnny Depp has gotten so enamored of really intense hair and makeup for his roles because when you get that famous it can sort of be the only way to really do your job, just sort of become somebody else. So that’s an unfortunate thing—people’s ability to see past the image. It was limited here. So yeah, it’s a relief to have that not be an issue in this particular project."

On how Eph's alcoholism won't be conquered any time soon:

"He does not sober up the rest of the season. He was never the best fighter in the world; but, no, he’s a little easier and a little bit more handicapped."

While speaking about being recognized in public because of his growing popularity, Stoll recalled seeing Christopher Reeve out and about when he was a kid:

"I remember growing up, my elementary school was on the same block as Christopher Reeve’s apartment. I remember very vividly seeing him walking down the street and everybody just is going crazy that there was Superman. Then occasionally he would have a disguise he would put on. He had glasses and I think he even put on a fake beard or something because Superman living on the same block as an elementary school could be a real problem. So I was sort of expecting the worst, but that doesn’t seem to be my problem."


"As the second season unfolds, the transformation has begun. It can no longer be denied — New York City is rapidly falling to an evil epidemic, and no one is coming to its rescue. Its citizens must fight or die. Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (Corey Stoll) and his unlikely allies tried to take down the embodiment of this evil — the Master — and failed. Now Eph and Dr. Nora Martinez (Mia Maestro) concentrate on creating a biological weapon to wipe out the creatures, while Abraham Setrakian (David Bradley) searches for an ancient book he hopes will reveal the strigoi’s entire history...and possibly a way to kill them. Meanwhile, the Master is out for revenge, unleashing new and even more terrifying breeds of bloodthirsty creatures after our team. Our team must find a way to defeat him before the infection spreads too far and becomes irreparable … before they become monsters themselves."

  • Derek Anderson
    About the Author - Derek Anderson

    Raised on a steady diet of R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps books and Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Derek has been fascinated with fear since he first saw ForeverWare being used on an episode of Eerie, Indiana.

    When he’s not writing about horror as the Senior News Reporter for Daily Dead, Derek can be found daydreaming about the Santa Carla Boardwalk from The Lost Boys or reading Stephen King and Brian Keene novels.