The loss of his father has changed Devon’s life forever on The Resident. Devon’s dad sadly passed away from COVID-19 in the season 4 premiere while Devon was on his way back to New York to be with him. Devon has struggled in the aftermath of his father’s death, even having visions of his late father in episode 2 of season 4.
HollywoodLife talked EXCLUSIVELY with Manish Dayal about how Devon will process his grief over losing his dad in the coming episodes. The actor revealed that Devon’s loss will steer him in a “new direction.” He also noted that a potential romance may be on the horizon for Devon, as well as a blast from the past.
Going forward from season 4 episode 2, how is Devon going to continue to handle the loss of his father?
Manish Dayal: I think that is going to be the nucleus of the season for Devon. You will see understanding that the first episode Devon loses his dad in a really brutal way and it happens fast. He’s not even able to be with him before he dies. His father dies alone, unfortunately, and I think we’ll learn that we chop that up to the fact that there is an enormous Black and Brown disparity in our country, and healthcare communities that are underfunded and marginalized are not experiencing the level of care that more funded communities are. And that disparity is killing people. Devon’s dad in Queens in an underfunded public hospital experiences that disparity firsthand. So you will see Devon come to terms with that fact, but by potentially episodes 4 or 5, he takes that and becomes a new man and a new doctor with a new mission. He rises above and uses that experience to push forward in a new direction. The loss of his dad steers him to new territory that we haven’t seen him in before and new realizations. You’ll see in the coming episodes how that is bubbling at the surface or does it ultimately, just like The Resident always does. We’re talking about the pandemic. We’re talking about coronavirus, and we do so in a very personal way. This is how we’re telling it because we have one of our own who lost someone very close to them. You’ll see all of that unfold, and you’ll see the other characters fold in. But ultimately, we’re all going to come together in the first batch of episodes when Chastain has a shift in management that forces everyone to react quickly and in a new way. And that’s how Devon ultimately practices moving forward from his loss.
Do you think there’s a part of Devon that feels guilty over what happened to his father?
Manish Dayal: Absolutely. I think that is something that’s probably so prevalent and common for so many healthcare workers who were not able to help the ones they were closest to because the nature of this virus is so aggressive. It takes no prisoners. To die alone this way is deeply saddening. For Devon in that position of not being able to help his own father, the level of guilt, regret, remorse has got to overtake him in such a way that he emerges as a new person. At the end of episode 1, you see all of that come crashing down on him when he’s watching his father’s diagnosis being told to him on Zoom in the most impersonal way you can imagine. You’re hearing something like that virtually. You can only imagine how it must feel for that individual. My goal and my hope is that we can shine a light on it and shine a light on this shift in how we are relating to each other and how we’re helping each other. I hope that we can talk more about that.
The show is in its fourth season. Devon’s been through so much over the years going from an intern to a resident. How do you feel about his evolution as you enter uncharted territory with your character?
Manish Dayal: I think Devon’s gone to some pretty dark places, and I think it’s hardening him. It’s turning him into, ultimately, the kind of caregiver that he’s going to be for the long term. I think that this experience could make him bitter and upset and sad, or he can transcend it and grow from it and become a different kind of doctor as a result. I think that he’s going to do the latter. In season 1 he was, as they say, the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed new intern who needed to be brought down a peg or two. He’s definitely experienced a healthy dose of reality, and he’s changed as a young man. It’s been really great to be a part of all those changes in that evolution. Also, how he mingles with the other characters like Conrad, in particular, because their relationship has evolved in a pretty dynamic way. They started off as mentee and mentor, and now I think they have a brotherhood.
We have Conrad and Nic, who have been the main couple of the show. Now we have AJ and Mina, who have finally acted on their feelings. When is Devon going to get some more love?
Manish Dayal: People say that Devon is always in love or with someone, and then now they want to see who’s next for him. I wonder if this is an opportunity for Devon to be single and grow independently? Or do people want to see him with someone? I think the verdict is out on that. I think there will be someone from his past that returns and stay tuned for that. In terms of a long term love interest, new character, that kind of thing, there are a few things on the horizon. Unfortunately, I can’t really say anything just yet. But I think if you keep watching, you’ll definitely see.
At the end of the second episode, we learn that Nic is pregnant, which is definitely going to shake things up a big at the hospital. Is Devon ready to be an honorary uncle?
Manish Dayal: We’ll see. Maybe if they ask him! I don’t know. That’s a great question. I like that story idea.
The cases in each episode are very touching and shocking at times. What are some of the cases on the horizon that fans can expect?
Manish Dayal: There’s a really interesting case in episode 3 that I’m a part of. Most interestingly, there’s a case… I can’t tell you too much, but it’s one of our own and it’s a totally new territory we haven’t even visited yet. So you’ll see one of the cases really hit home for the entire cast.