Shawn Ryan casts 'The Shield' actor in ABC's 'Last Resort'

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A Shield reunion is coming to ABC’s eagerly anticipated Last Resort.

Jay Karnes has been cast in a recurring role on the action drama series, about the crew of a nuclear submarine who defy a dubious command to start World War III. He’ll play the Secretary of Defense on the show. The actor actually made an under-the-radar appearance in the show’s pilot, since his character’s voice is heard over the radio in a crucial scene.

Last Resort is co-created by Shawn Ryan, who was also the creator of FX’s The Shield, which co-starred Karnes. Since, Karnes has played arcs on FX’s Sons of Anarchy, ABC’s V and USA’s Burn Notice.

While appearing in front of critics at the Television Critics Association’s press tour last week, Ryan said The Shield — along with shorter-lived efforts like Fox’s Chicago Code and FX’s Terriers — were necessary to take on Last Resort.

“When [co-creator Karl Gajdusek and I] pitched this to [ABC entertainment president] Paul Lee and his cohorts at ABC, I described it as the show that I couldn’t make five years ago,” Ryan said. “The ongoing serialization of The Shield, combined with the production value of Chicago Code, combined with this buddy thing that we had done in Terriers — all this stuff got me to this place where I felt I could do something this ambitious …. It’s a big‑budget, very huge, monstrous‑scope show that I don’t think I would have been capable of doing before.”

Last Resort premieres on ABC on Thursday, Sept. 27. Here’s the trailer:


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