Like his Prison Break costar Wentworth Miller, Amaury Nolasco has left the Big House as the show’s second season begins. But life on the run in Texas, where the show is shooting, has its own challenges – in particular, the heat and humidity, which trump even that of the 25-year-old actor’s native Puerto Rico. But Nolasco, who plays fellow escapee Fernando Sucre, is finding comfort in other kinds of hot spots while shooting in Dallas. PEOPLE caught up with the former biology student about staying cool and unleashing his inner cowboy.

So you went from chilly Chicago in the first season …
To Texas heat. When I left Chicago, people said, “Careful with that Texas heat.” I’m like, “I’m from Puerto Rico. I know heat.” Honey, it’s something I’ve never experienced before. 115 (degrees)? 112? What is this? It’s unbearable. And the humidity?

Have you found a local hangout?
Dallas is a great city. We’ve been hanging out a lot at the W (hotel’s) Ghostbar. There’s this place called Primo’s, which is a Mexican place. I’m riding horses. It’s Texas! You need to do those things.

Do you have a cowboy hat?
Not yet. I do have the belt, though (laughs). I have the belt and the buckle.

How are you guys passing the time on set?
We’re all shooting now on different schedules. So we don’t get to see as much of each other as we used to. You’ll see why. The storyline will take us there.

Any crazy fan moments?
Not yet. No stalking (laughs). But it’s fun just to hang out and see how much we’re loved by the fans. We’re (in our) sophomore year. It’s time to prove it to everybody. … The writers are doing a phenomenal job, and I can’t speak enough about the cast. I’m just blessed.

What can we expect from season two?
Trust me, you’ve got to hold on and brace yourself. It’s going to be insane.

What can you tell us about your character this season?

He goes through a few changes. He has a heart of gold. He’s a guy you learn to love. There is going to be a dark side that we’re going to see because these circumstances bring him to that.

Are you wearing any disguises while you’re on the run?
No. I can’t grow hair from one day to the other.

What’s next for you?
I’m still doing a movie right now with (Steven) Spielberg and Michael Bay. It’s Transformers. We’re special operational officers – me, Tyrese (Gibson), Josh Duhamel and Zack Ward. We’re like Navy Seals, and we’re fighting these Transformers. It’s a huge movie.