'Salem': Shane West on finding the perfect balance of scares, gore and sex

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salem-shane-west-john-alden-wgn-america.jpgWGN America's spooky new series, "Salem," doesn't premiere until April. Since that's way too long to wait to get our fill of the series' supernatural take on the Salem witch trials, Zap2it decided to get you -- and the stars -- excited for the debut by subjecting them to our "Salem" Survey.

Up next is Shane West, who plays John Alden on the new drama, premiering Sunday, April 20 at 10 p.m. ET/9 p.m. CT. Read on to find out why he thinks "Salem" is the perfect combination of scares, gore, and sex and why he'd take an iPod and a genie to cope with 1690s Salem.

Zap2it: Describe your character in 5 words.
West: Rugged, passionate, stubborn, proud, brash. 

What three items would you take with you to a deserted island (or puritanical Salem)?
An iPod with all my music that never runs out of juice, a bag of hunting tools, and a genie in a lamp for three added wishes.

Could you have survived in the 1690s?
Of course! Although it would be taxing physically and mentally. 

Which witch is which? Name the book/TV show/movie/play each witch is from. No cheating!
Glinda the Good Witch:
"The Wizard Of Oz"
Hermione Granger: Sounds like a "Harry Potter" or "Percy Jackson"-type film.
Bonnie Bennett: No clue.
Fiona Goode: "American Horror Story"
Sabrina Spellman: "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch"!
Endora: "Bewitched"?
The White Witch: CS Lewis "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe"
Willow Rosenberg: "Buffy," I think.

Pick one: "The Witches of Eastwick," "The Craft," or "Practical Magic"
"The Craft." Fairuza Balk = awesome.

If you could cast any spell, what would it be?
I'd cast a spell to bend and control time at my will. 

Would you be a good witch or a bad witch?
I'd do my best to be a good witch ;)

What's the most surprising true fact you learned about the actual Salem witch trials?
That the poor victims were not actually burned. Rather they were pressed to death (with large stones) and hung.

What's the most challenging thing about starring in a show that's both genre and period?
One of the more challenging things is keeping it as period-accurate as possible (sets, wardrobe, hair, dialogue), while balancing the fiction and fantasy rules we have set up for "Salem." The delicate balance with history and fiction and the need for scares, gore, and sex. A wonderful combination if you ask me.

Check out Zap2it's other "Salem" surveys here:
Photo/Video credit: WGN America