While Men in Trees is about much more than men, the show just wouldn’t have the same appeal or frame storylines in quite the same way without the quality and quantity of men who call Elmo home. Men in Trees is a show which gives its characters room to breathe and space to grow. We have seen our favourite men change, evolve and develop as each episode drifts by, some for the better and some for the worse. While the men presented here do not represent an exhaustive list by any means, here you will find a little about what we love and what irritates us about the main men of Elmo.
Ben Jackson (Abraham Benrubi) – Local bar owner Ben is warm, kind and an all round nice guy. He is friend and confidant to many and leads a pretty contented life except when dealing with his relationships with women. In that regard complications abound. In trying to be all things to all people and avoiding conflict in matters of the heart, Ben is caught for a while in a precariously balanced love triangle between his estranged wife Theresa and old flame Sarah. It is only when he reasserts his masculinity that the way ahead becomes clear and he is able to make a critical decision.
Jack Slattery (James Tupper) – Jack tends to local wildlife, he is a committed conservationist and he epitomises all that is good about the woodsy, outdoorsy man. He is strong, and while not silent, he is certainly succinct with his use of words. With a wry sense of humour he is charming without being over-bearing. However he does have a tendency to spend too much time in his head and taking guidance from his feelings of guilt and responsibility, rather than listening to what is in his heart.
With a rare and unfortunate ability to attract complications and dramatic circumstances, Jack currently finds himself caught in a difficult position between his pregnant ex-girlfriend (Lynn) and almost new girlfriend Marin. If he got out of his head for a while and examined his heart, the situation wouldn’t be nearly as difficult as he thinks it is.
Buzz Washington (John Amos) – Owner and operator of Elmo’s one-man airline, Buzz is an old school man’s man. He is traditionally minded, stubborn and set in his ways, but these are not necessarily negatives. He has a kind heart and can always be depended upon in a crisis to help as best he can. Lovingly devoted to Mai, his family has grown to encompass his two sons from different lives, George and Patrick.
Patrick Bachelor (Derek Richardson) – Responsible for running Elmo’s guest inn and the local radio station, Patrick is sweet, innocent and demonstrates a solid measure of goof. In bringing Marin to Elmo he sets in motion a series of related events that impact significantly on his own life. He struggles with success in relationships with women mainly due to a lifetime of over-protectiveness by his mother Celia. Finding happiness with Elmo newcomer Annie, he is finally stepping out from his mother’s shadow and following his own path.
Sam ‘Plow Guy’ (Ty Olsson) – While introduced to us early on the series, we don’t really come to know the character of Sam until we look through the window of his relationship with Jane, Marin’s editor. He is practical, ruggedly handsome and deliciously masculine. He is someone more inclined to rule with his heart than his head, refusing to let his long distance relationship with Jane end when she returns to New York.
Until recently, the two of them have shared a particularly close relationship which was strengthened by their contrasting natures and life outlooks. While both are obviously still in love with eachother, they have convinced themselves that they just can’t make things work. I suspect we will have more to watch in this space in the not-too-distant future. The New York girl and the small town Elmo boy will surely reunite again, hopefully without further mouse-induced problems.
Stuart Maxson (Jason O’Mara) – Smooth, suave and sophisticated publisher Stuart Maxson seduces Marin both professionally and personally. He has a comfortable confident manner that instantly appeals and rather than win Marin over with showy actions and constant attention, he simply strikes right at the heart. A clear example of this is the gift he sends to Marin to help persuade her to sign with his publishing house. Rather than the expensive flowers, wines and foods sent by other publishers, he instead sends a book rich in meaning – Thoreau’s Walden. On a personal level, Marin and Stuart have enjoyed a brief snow-capped tryst which in reality could never become more than a pleasant diversion.
Richard Ellis (Currie Graham) – Police Supervisor Richard Ellis is unable to resist the mysterious charm and allure of Patrick’s mother, Celia. While she can be abrasive, irritating and caustic to many people this doesn’t seem to bother Richard, though he is a little miffed at her unwillingness to acknowledge their connection. Given her issues of over-protectiveness with son Patrick, another man in her life really is the best solution for all concerned. While their relationship is initially conducted behind closed doors, and sometimes behind locked cell doors, eventually Celia realises that the world will not end if she seeks happiness for herself for a while.
Cash (Scott Elrod) – Local roving handyman and resident sexy loner, Cash lends more than just a helping hand to Marin’s house re-construction project. He is a relaxed nature loving boy who is comfortable making do with what life throws his way. While he could be easily dismissed at face value as being a lazy drifter, aside from being handy with a tool belt he also has a grounded honest opinion which he is often willing to share.
Currently to be found living with Marin at her new residence, there is an interesting dynamic in the air. Too bad for Jack that his timing is always just one step off the march, he is too quick to rule himself out and too ready to jump to assumptions. Cash brings the perfect chilled-out balance to weigh against Marin’s overly analytical and sometimes uptight nature.
Jerome (Timothy Webber) – Regular patron at the Chieftain and sometime distributor of mail, Jerome is a professional drinker and occasional dispenser of sage like advice. He is a no nonsense, straight up kind of guy who has little tolerance for endless chatter about feelings and relationships. While he may be a little gruff at times and more than a little rough around the edges, beneath it all lies a warm and caring heart.
Terry (Mario Cantone) – When Marin’s hair takes a disastrous turn she is encouraged to pay a visit to hairdresser extraordinaire Terry. If it wasn’t for the ground-shaking tremors that day, things probably would have turned out much better. Thank goodness Jack is a dab hand at hair washing and hair cutting…lucky Marin indeed. While for Marin her first haircut at ‘Terry’s Hair Emporium’ may not have been a desirable outcome, Terry is still an entertaining character. Terry is a connection to the gossipy, flamboyant filled streets of New York. Enjoying a growing relationship with Buzz’s son George, things look very bright indeed for this hairdresser who is oh so proud of his buns of steel.