Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Why Bryson Stone From Season 2, Episode 4 Of NCIS: Hawai'i Looks So Familiar

CBS's "NCIS: Hawai'i" is the latest spin-off of the network's top-rated "NCIS" franchise. The series still features all of the memorable plot twists and naval investigative work of the first three programs but stands out thanks to its diverse cast of characters. Vanessa Lachey is the first female franchise lead in her role as Special Agent Jane Tennant. The show has an impressive roster of supporting characters, including Kai Holman (Alex Tarrant) and Lucy Tara (Yasmine Al-Bustami), who becomes romantically involved with Kate Whistler (Tori Anderson) in the first same-sex relationship featured in the main cast of the "NCIS" universe. The 2nd season of "NCIS: Hawaii" is also set to pay homage to its predecessors with its first crossover episode with "NCIS" and "NCIS: Los Angeles," with main cast members guest starring on each program (per Entertainment Weekly).

Like its parent shows, "NCIS: Hawaii" has also had a wide range of guest and recurring roles since it premiered in the fall of 2021. In the Season 2 episode titled "Primal Fear," the actor playing Ranger Bryson Stone may be giving you a case of deja vu. Here is where you may have seen him before.

Eric Ladin rose to fame as Cpl. James Chaffin on HBO's Generation Kill

Bryson Stone is played by Eric Ladin, a character actor born and raised in Houston, Texas (via IMDb). Ladin got his start in the early 2000s with a long line of small guest spots on popular TV shows like "Boston Public," CSI: Miami," and "Veronica Mars." But his first part of substantial prominence came in the 2008 HBO miniseries "Generation Kill." The program explored Rolling Stone reporter Evan Wright's time spent with the U.S. Marine Corps 1st Reconnaissance Battalion during the Iraq War. Ladin played Marine Corporal James Chaffin in the show.

The actor featured in all seven episodes, and his character was a frequent point of comic relief to break the ice during the many intense scenes. In a 2011 interview with Daily Actor, he was asked about the point he transitioned from bit parts to featured performances. "I think the moment the ball started really rolling was Generation Kill," Ladin said. "When I got the job on Generation Kill as one of the main characters on that, ever since then, I kind of came back and not only been working consistently but also been able to work on good television shows that I wanted to work on." He went on to highlight the relationships he made in the industry as a key source of his opportunities.

He played Jamie Wright in the first two seasons of AMC's The Killing

Eric Ladin's next major role came in the critically-acclaimed AMC murder mystery drama series "The Killing." The series featured powerful lead performances by Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman, who respectively played Sarah Linden and Stephen Holder, two detectives investigating a complex homicide in Seattle, Washington. Ladin starred as Jamie Wright, the campaign manager for mayoral candidate Darren Richmond (Billy Campbell). His character turns out to be a pivotal key in the overall arc of Seasons 1 and 2 revolving around Rosie Larson's (Katie Findlay) brutal murder.

In a 2012 interview with Collider, the actor was asked if he expected the searing drama to become as popular as it had, and he replied, "I guess I had hoped it would, more than I thought it would. Once I got here and actually started shooting Season 1, I realized that we had something special. I knew that we had a show that our audience would really enjoy. And then, I thought this was going to be a show that has a pretty loyal following with people sitting around, talking about it and debating who they think did it." He then revealed that he was surprised at the backlash the 1st season finale received from viewers due to its ambiguity (per Entertainment Weekly).

On Boardwalk Empire, Ladin memorably starred as J. Edgar Hoover

Eric Ladin followed his memorably creepy role on "The Killing" with another standout performance in the 3rd season of HBO's Prohibition-era drama series "Boardwalk Empire." The actor portrayed notable and controversial FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover. Coming just two years after Leonardo DiCaprio played the director in Clint Eastwood's "J. Edgar," Ladin's embodiment of Hoover was both physically and audibly similar to how his real-life equivalent looked and sounded in the time period depicted in Season 4 of the show.

Speaking to The PC Principle in 2022, the actor was asked how he prepared for the role and responded, "First of all, when I came onto the show in the fourth season, it was already doing fantastic across the board. So, playing someone as well known as J. Edgar Hoover was a bit scary, but that being said, I really enjoyed the process. While one of the more challenging roles that I've taken on, it's also been one of the most fulfilling because of that. I had a wonderful dialect coach that I worked with regularly." He then revealed how the writers and directors gave the actors ample time to work on their scenes. This hard work definitely paid off in his uncanny personification of the FBI's first director.

He played Glenn 'Jammer' Taylor in HBO's The Brink

In 2015, Eric Ladin got to branch out into comedy with his main role on the short-lived HBO comedy series "The Brink." The series became known for a bit of controversy due to the network canceling the show after already renewing it for a 2nd season before the debut season even aired. The show explored satirical themes as it focused on a crisis in Pakistan that mirrored many real-life governmental interventions in other countries. Ladin was featured in the program as naval Lieutenant Glenn "Jammer" Taylor, the backseat flight officer to Lieutenant Commander Zeke "Z-Pak" Tilson (Pablo Schreiber).

Although many of Jammer's hijinks in the show were overly stereotypical of those raised in rural areas in the American South, the character's bond with Z-Pak was a highlight of the series. In an interview with Channel Guide Magazine about the part, Ladin commented, "I love how much he looks up to, respects and idolizes Z-Pak. They're peers ... but he really looks up to Z-Pak because he's the fighter pilot. He and Z-Pak are a great little Yin and Yang." The Texas native admitted that his character wasn't originally written as a Southern boy, but after reading for the role, he was able to relate Jammer with some of the people he grew up with. He then revealed how the series creators and directors loved his take on the character.

The actor played Trevor Wozniak on History Channel's military series Six

The History Channel is renowned for its historical documentaries, and with the rise of original cable programming in the 2000s and 2010s, the network branched out into occasional scripted regular and limited series which usually explored historical or militaristic themes. One of the most memorable from the channel was "Six," which ran for two seasons in 2017 and 2018. The show was about the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group, also known as "Seal Team Six." Eric Ladin joined the cast in the final season as Trevor Wozniak a.k.a. Foxtrot Delta 4/FD24, one of the team's most outspoken and toughest soldiers.

During a promotional video for the series from History Channel, Ladin spoke about some of his character's abrasive impulses during interactions with other members of his group. He stated, "He [Trevor] crosses the line a little bit to see how somebody else is going to react. And so he messes with Fishbait [Jaylen Moore]. Do I think Trevor believes many of the things he says? Absolutely. But do I think he says it in a way to see if he can get a rise out of Fish? For sure. I think he's testing people's mental strength..." The actor then explained how part of Trevor's prickly personality is to inspire his group to have confidence in him as an operator. 

As seen on "NCIS," Ranger Bryson Stone continues Eric Ladin's impressive ability to disappear into virtually any role.