[Warning: Contains Spoilers for Season 5 of Suits!]
What does the future hold for Mike Ross, whose big secret finally catches up with him in season five of Suits? For some insider knowledge, we turned to the man himself, Patrick J. Adams, who shared what's next for Pearson, Specter, Litt's most beautiful mind -- now that the jig is up and Mike is in the clink. Here's what we learned.
USA Network: At the end of season five, Harvey drops you off at the penitentiary. Is that where we pick up for season six?
Patrick J. Adams: There is no time jump; we pick up where we left off. I'm in prison for the entire season, pretty much.
USA: How does it feel to be in a totally new space, but confined to that one setting?
I actually find it's really liberating. I get to sort of recreate Mike and it's exciting to be in a new space; it feels rejuvenating. The other day, I watched them trying to block a scene in Harvey's office and I thought how lucky I am that I don't need to figure out a new and interesting way to move through that one office and hand a folder to somebody in some way I haven't done before.
USA: Are you going to be in a white-collar prison?
PJA: Yeah, it is a little bit more of a white-collar prison, [but] there are a couple of characters who have found their way into that prison, who -- would you believe it? -- have it out for Mike Ross. So, yes, there are some people who don't fit the mold of a white-collar prison, whose behavior is, let's say, a little unsavory.
USA: Does this put the character in a different headspace? More tension, less tension than you would find before?
PJA: Yes, he's nervous. I had to play a scene recently where my life was actually in danger and I thought, that is not something I've ever had to do as young Mike Ross.
USA: The journey of your character is interesting because in season one, you're cocky -- you think you know everything. Now, going into season six, you're put in a position where, not only do you not know everything, your every move is being watched and your power has been completely taken away from you.
PJA: Well, I'd argue that the big change is that we've been operating under the conceit of this really horrible secret that we've been holding, and that secret has sort of snowballed out of control over six seasons. So, in the beginning of the sixth season, it's almost a hard reset. He doesn't have any of that anymore. He's paying his dues. He's not under the weight of having to hide anything anymore. That pressure of having to keep this secret that everybody's been trying to keep for him has finally lifted. Now, that comes with the consequence of changing his environment and putting it in prison, but I think as a character, he actually is a little bit lighter.
USA: Having come full circle in season six, what's left for Mike Ross?
PJA: We've seen both sides of this, right? We left Mike saying he didn't want to be the kind of lawyer that he had been for the last couple of years, fighting for the upper one percent, fighting for people to put more money into their pockets. That's not the kind of work he wanted to do. He felt as though he had wasted his time. When he gets out of prison, it's going to be interesting to see how he interacts with the rest of that firm. I think he could still want to be a lawyer, but it would be a very different kind of law he was practicing.
USA: Now that he's been the criminal, would Mike want to prosecute?
PJA: Would he want to put someone into prison? I don't know! That's a good question.
See for yourself how Mike manages life in the big house when Suits returns on Wednesday, July 13 at 9/8c! Also, follow Patrick J. Adams on Snapchat (thehalfadams), Twitter, and Instagram, and check out The Style Evolution of Mike Ross!
Ready for summer? Count down the days to the Suits premiere with the official 2016 Louis Litt Calendar!
This interview has been edited for clarity and length. Special thanks to Ian Gotler.