Former Ballakermeen and St Mary’s student Joe Locke has made a guest appearance on fellow actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson’s podcast ‘Dinner’s on Me’.

Manx actor Locke rose to fame in Heartstopper, in which he plays main character Charlie Spring.

And fans of the Netflix show, which is based on the popular adult graphic, don’t have to wait long to see him back on their screens.

The third season of Heartstopper is set to be released in October.

But in the meantime, islanders interested in hearing more about Locke and what he’s up to can do so by tuning in to a recent episode of a popular American podcast.

Jesse Tyler Ferguson, best known for portraying Mitchell on American TV series Modern Family, hosts a podcast called ‘Dinner’s on Me’, where he interviews celebrities over dinner at trendy spots in Los Angeles and New York.

He talks about food, pop culture, mental health and more, and has welcomed guests such as Cocaine Bear star Margo Martindale and Hunger Games actress Elizabeth Banks on the pod to name a few.

His most recent episode is with Manxman Joe Locke, recorded in Soho, where the pair sat down at restaurant Jack’s Wife Freda eating green shakshuka and grilled haloumi and discussing his acting career that, at the age of only 20, has seen him catapult into the limelight.

Actors Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Manxman Joe Locke
Actors Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Manxman Joe Locke (Jesse Tyler Ferguson)

The duo started by discussing Locke’s recent six-month spell in Atlanta, which Locke admitted at first he didn’t like. But went on to explain he settled in, and described the state as the most ‘diverse, amazing and cultured place’ he’d ever been to.

After ordering food and 10 minutes of riveting conversation, Ferguson approaches the topic of the Isle of Man and what it was like for Joe to be raised there.

The pair discuss the legalisation of homosexuality in the island, with Locke confirming that prior to 1992 same-sex sexual activity was a criminal offence.

The former Ballakermeen student said: ‘They [the Isle of Man Government] only did it then because they had to.

‘It’s called a Crown Dependency, and it means we have our own government and make our own laws.

‘I’d say it’s changing now but when I was growing up and when my mum was growing up the island was like 20 years behind the UK in some ways.

‘One of the good things about living somewhere so small is my childhood was so free and I would run round the fields and my mum would never lock the front door.

‘There was one year three houses got burgled, and it was huge news, everyone was talking about it. It’s that kind of place, it just wouldn’t happen in a city.

‘It’s like that classic small town thing where at the time I resented it and couldn’t wait to leave because that part of me wanted to see the world and explore, but now I’ve done all them things that most people won’t do in their whole lives, I love going home.’

The conversation moved on to Locke talking about auditioning from the Isle of Man for Heartstopper during the pandemic on a Zoom call, and he gives hints at what fans can expect in season 3 of the hit Netflix series.

You can listen to the 46-minute episode on Spotify and Apple Music by searching ‘Dinner’s on Me’.