New General Hospital star Michael Blake Kruse is already melting hearts as Port Charles police officer Rory Cabrera, partly because he's just a naturally charismatic actor, and partly because he was made for the role.
In a new interview with Soap Opera Digest, the Iowa native says he felt connected to Rory as soon as he saw the breakdown for the character.
"He was like the epitome of who I try to represent myself as, and I have so many friends and family in law enforcement and military as well, so all these types of roles are kind of like a dream to me because these are the people that I actually am connected with, and I look up to them," he explains.
Viewers have already gotten the feeling that Rory is a sweet, standup guy, and Kruse confirms their early impressions.
"As it was written, I would describe him as someone who is by the book, he's honest, he joined the police department because he truly wants to serve and help," the actor says of his new alter ego. "I don't think he's the stereotypical rough-and-tumble kind of guy and I think he might be kind of maybe the odd guy in his squad because he doesn't believe that all these criminals are necessarily bad, and he wants to make sure that justice is served and that they receive due process, and he wants to uncover the truth."
Some of Kruse's first scenes were with Trina (Tabyana Ali), and Rory showed his personality immediately when he gave the teen a soda and a warm smile when she was brought into the station on suspicion of filming the sex tape of Cameron (William Lipton) and Josslyn (Eden McCoy).
Says Kruse (in character) of the heartwarming scene, "I don't think I fully know if she's innocent or not, I think I just recognize that she's kind of suffering, in a way, and I think naturally the soda scene for me was just a nice thing that Rory would do for almost anyone in that situation, whether he believes her or not. And then just on top of it, she happens to be cute, and I think we made a little connection. And on the day, Phideaux, who was directing that scene, he really did want us to connect with some eye contact and for me to be very diligent in me sending over that soda to help her, and he wanted Taby to show some gratitude. I think naturally, it just showed a little spark with just a little longer eye contact."
Fans loved the spark between Rory and Trina, and many have been surmising that the show might explore a possible pairing between the two. As it turns out, Kruse confirms that a Rory/Trina pairing might be in the cards!
"My first day was her second day, and from my understanding, she was thrown into some very thick, difficult scenes right away and I had noticed a lot of crew members come up to her and tell her she was doing a great job, and, 'You did awesome on your first day.' I don't think she really knew how I was going to fit into the story; I think she just assumed, and rightfully so, that I was just a day player or a background guy in the scenes in the interrogation room," he explains. "And we just made some small talk and I told her it was my first day, and she told me it was her second day, and that was kind of it! And then, maybe a few days later, Frank [Valentini, executive producer] did come up to me and Taby and kind of gave us the gist of where he thought this was going to head, and how there might be some type of relationship between the two of us."
Time will tell what that "relationship" will look like, but for now, Kruse is incredibly grateful for the support that he's received since news broke that he has joined the ABC soap opera as Rory.
"I didn't know if the warm reception from anyone was anything exceptional, or if it was just because I was a newcomer, but I was kind of surprised by how kind everybody was and I was also very surprised by how invested these fans are and how much they know about the storylines," he enthuses. "I was actually finding myself going through some tweets and finding value in what people were saying about the characters, so I was just impressed. I also am finding it fun to interact and get their take on how they predict Rory will fit into the storyline, and I'm humored by all these different love interests they predict for me. And for all I know, they may be right! I have an idea about where Rory might fit in naturally, but some of the things they say might make sense."
For Kruse's full SOD interview, click here.
What are your first impressions of Michael Blake Kruse and his GH character Rory Cabrera? Do you hope the soap opera explores a connection between Rory and Trina? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.