“Barry” made its long-awaited return to HBO this month, along with fan favorite NoHo Hank. Anthony Carrigan continues to steal scenes as the misunderstood gay Chechnen mobster, a role which earned him an Emmy nomination in 2019.
Carrigan appears shirtless in an early episode, and fans were quick to speculate about his character’s tattoos. In a new appearance on Variety’s Awards Circuit Podcast, the actor shed some light on their meanings
“They all tell a very specific story because they’re essentially prison tattoos,” Carrigan said. “Any particular mob will hunt me down because it’s pretty serious when you rock those kinds of those kinds of tattoos! They do have real meanings in terms of prison culture and what Hank has been through.”
Season 3 of “Barry” has received nearly universal acclaim, with critics praising the show’s increasingly dark tone as nearly every character continues to spiral.
In his review, IndieWire’s Ben Travers wrote that “Season 3 is the bleakest vision of ‘Barry’ so far. At times, things get so hopeless, it feels like an ending has to arrive ahead of schedule, since imagining Barry’s future is as impossible for us as it appears to be for him.” But he added that “‘Barry’ has proven it’s one worth seeing through, no matter where the bottom ultimately lies.”
Carrigan echoes that sentiment, and praised all of his co-stars for their ability to extract comedy from the increasingly depressing story.
“Each of these characters are just in very compromised positions,” he said. “Some of my favorite comedic moments thus far this season have been Henry’s. And also Steven, as well. And Sarah. Everyone is just kind of finding these little moments in a really kind of dark and serious terrain to just really lighten it. Hank is kind of his chipper self, albeit within a world that is just kind of caving in on him.”
As darkly hilarious as the season has been so far, Carrigan emphasizes that there is more excitement to come.
“That’s the real balance of the show is that these characters are desperately trying to get what they want,” he said. “And as they’re getting closer and closer to actually just getting it, the conflict of it all just sucks them right back in. Especially as the season progresses, I think people are going to see that it just goes off the rails.”
New episodes of “Barry” air each Sunday night on HBO.