Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Season Finale [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the season finale episodes.]
How’s everyone after that finale? I will freely admit I got a little misty in episode eight as John told Sara why he loved her, and later that he wanted her despite what he might forfeit, and then at the end when he told her it would not be because Violet was pregnant. It also occurred to me that nowhere in there does Sara say out loud that she loves him, too. But I’m OK if this is where we leave them, as friends. As I said last week, that’s the relationship I did not want them to lose.
I’m happy for Laszlo to get a chance to figure out who he is without the institute, and I can only imagine those conversations he and Karen will have with Freud. I didn’t see losing Marcus coming, and I was grateful Lucius got his vengeance without the over-the-top verbal, “That’s for my brother.” The silent look between him and John said it all.
I was grateful, too, that we didn’t have a bookend execution with Libby, although we can discern that will most definitely be her ending. Instead, we end with hope, three friends wishing each other well and Sara seizing her new success as a detective and paying it forward to other women by giving them jobs.
I do hope we see these characters again. Showrunner Stuart Carolan said in a TCA interview this week that there could well be another season, but they’re waiting for Caleb Carr, who’s writing a third book. Considering how much they veered from the second, I wouldn’t think the book was needed, but YMMV.
For now, enjoy the second part of my interview with Rosy McEwen, who was just astoundingly good all season.
One lingering question for me was about how Libby went undetected for so long, and whether her previous infant victims were the babies who had been reported “stillborn” and whisked away from the hospital. “I think we decided that it was a mixture,” she says.
“I think some of them are from the hospital. She had access to them and [some were] also babies [of] prostitutes or Goo-Goo’s gang. She [was opportunistic because she] is searching for something that she’s never going to find, but she has this hope that she’ll rekindle that love of the baby that she lost.”
Having Sara question Libby to find the Vanderbilt baby instead of Kreizler was by design, since so much of the story was Libby’s connection to Sara. “I think female energy is so much at the heart of the story, particularly with Sara and Libby’s protagonist/antagonist relationship [between] two women [with] huge personalities,” she says.
“And I think it was that connection, which was so essential, was a quite precious part of the story. And I don’t think anyone wanted to break that and if he’d come in and analyzed her in a way that she hadn’t been seen by Sara, [that would have done it].”
It was interesting that Libby never returned to her mother’s to avenge her treatment, and McEwen explains that the damage was already done, and Libby had moved on from her. “She’s already harmed her mom in so many ways,” she expains.
“By the point that the mom comes into this story, Libby’s on the edge of a complete nervous breakdown and she’s so [tightly wound] I don’t think she’s got space in her mind for anything else. The moment she sees her daughter, she cannot comprehend that everything she’s been searching for that she lost [is right there in front of her], and her mother falls by the wayside. She doesn’t care about her.”
In the end, in that cell, Libby finally finds her peace. And that cell was actually a respite for McEwen, too. “Libby’s death was a really hard one for us to get our head around and there were so many different options of what [we would do]…how she’s going to die and if she was going to die,” she says.
“And suicide was the main [idea] at the beginning. We thought…no one can capture Libby. She’s such a huge gale force wind, literally. How can you capture her? So suicide was the one for a while, but it just never felt quite right. It felt like that was too small for her. So, I guess the electric chair was the most natural and satisfying end.”
“I think also maybe Libby finds an ounce of peace at the every end, which she wouldn’t have if she had committed suicide. It would’ve been very dramatic and harder to watch, but this way, she gets to say she’s sorry and then she gets to sit with it and get possibly one percent of peace. Everything had been taken away from her and she had nothing left to give.”
The series marks McEwen’s first series role, and she was thrilled to discover all the ins and outs of production. “It was amazing. I really had such an incredible time and I was like a kid in a candy shop. I’ve never seen or experienced that world before,” she shares.
“And I would flit very much between being very quiet and having to be very focused. And then days I had to be moving on the street or something, I was running around…I couldn’t believe my luck. I still pinch myself.”
“I love all the stuff in the prison. I don’t know why it came to such a satisfying space…that was completely mine for the whole filming. I really lived in [that] room for three days. It felt very quite theatrical. I really got to embed myself in those moments.”
Going from the instant gratification and feedback of stage to waiting a year for a performance to be seen is a big switch, but McEwen says she still approached the character and the work the same way. “Whether you’re on set or on stage without an actual laugh or sigh from the audience, you know what it feels like for you and that’s the moment you’re searching for,” she explains.
“You say it and it comes from such a deep place in your body, and that’s all I’m trying to do as an actor is to find those moments of genuine response to how you’re feeling or to the [other] person. And that’s all I can ever try to do. You learn and grow and take it on to your next experience. The more you practice, the better you get at it.”
Photos and Video Courtesy of TNT.
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.
Interview: Henri Esteve on Grown-ish Season 3
An interview with Henri Esteve, who plays Javi on Freeform’s Grown-ish. He talks about his season three experience.
For All Mankind Season 2: Talking with Wrenn Schmidt, Krys Marshall, Jodi Balfour, and Sonya Walger [Exclusive]
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] One of the hooks of For All Mankind is that it’s very much a story about the women of NASA. In Season 2, we explore the journeys of the women in the program, either through their own service or through their family affiliations. Four of those…
Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Season Finale [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the season finale episodes.] How’s everyone after that finale? I will freely admit I got a little misty in episode eight as John told Sara why he loved her, and later that he wanted her despite what he might forfeit, and then at the end when he…
Rosy McEwen Talks The Alienist: Angel of Darkness [Exclusive]
Hands down, one of the best surprises of The Alienist: Angel of Darkness is that the serial killer this season has been front and center alongside the cast as a fully-formed character. We’ve watched Libby Hatch devolve from a prim, mild-mannered nurse to a woman in a rage hell-bent on…
The Alienist: Angel of Darkness Relationship Recap: John and Sara
[Warning: Spoilers for “Belly of the Beast” and “Memento Mori”] If you’ve read me for a while (thank you!), you know two things — I lean way, way in on the characters I adore and I loathe love geometry arcs. So, I’m torn about where we are and where we…
Louriza Tronco Talks The Order Season 2 [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers ahead for Season 2.] The Order’s second season is dark yet delightful entertainment on many levels, and one of its biggest sources of joy and snark is the sassy Gabrielle Dupres. Last season, she was assertive and deadly and fairly annoyed with the world. This season, she’s been…
Previewing Netflix’s Virgin River
[Warning: General spoilers ahead.] Full disclosure: I have a Netflix account for my Mom, but I’m not a regular viewer. If I get a heads up on something, I’ll go look for it, but I don’t have a wander across its offerings, which, as I understand it, is how most…
Final Thoughts From the Killjoys Team [Exclusive]
This is the day of the week I’d normally hit you up with a Killjoys preview, but now that we’ve put the series to bed and released Team Awesome Force into the wild, I have one more treat for you–some final thoughts excerpted from my conversations with the Killjoys folks….
Michelle Lovretta Talks Wrapping Up Killjoys [Exclusive]
[Warning: Spoilers for the series finale.] To quote Miss Jackson, “That’s the end?” Yes, friends, it is. And like I promised you, everything would be, was, and is alright. I went to the Killjoys source, series creator Michelle Lovretta, who wrote the last episode, to break down that delicious finale….
Luke Macfarlane Talks Killjoys Season 5 [Exclusive]
As Killjoys winds down its run, I’ve been extremely fortunate to chat this summer with our onscreen and offscreen faves. I’ve said here a few times that Luke Macfarlane was my introduction into the show, and in the intervening five years, he’s been very kind to chat with me for…
What They Said: Three Revealing Conversations from Survivor’s Remorse “Closure”
WARNING: Spoilers for Survivor’s Remorse “Closure” The latest episode of Starz’s Survivor’s Remorse featured conversations that showed characters really digging deep into their thoughts, emotions and motivations.
Two Takes: The Catch “The Knock-Off”
Who can you trust? If this episode of The Catch was any indication, the answer is just about nobody. Betrayal was running rampant as Felicity (Shivani Ghai) arose from the dead to seduce-con Margot, Gretchen (Maria Thayer, Gotham, The Mindy Project) played gold-hearted Alice 2.0 before swindling Ethan, Tessa jumped…
What They Said: Top 3 Quotable Moments from Preacher “El Valero”
Both Quincannon and Jesse refuse to give up on what they each think is rightfully theirs. While Jesse is struggling to face the consequences of his actions, Quincannon has laid his past demons to rest and is hellbent on moving forward and putting Annville on the map again. Despite a…
What They Said: Favorite Quotes from Supergirl “Worlds Finest”
Oh, Supergirl. That ending was cold. But I can’t hate on you because the latest episode has quickly become one of my favorites.
What They Said: Top 4 Quotable Moments from Black Sails “XXIII”
The dialogue in “XXIII” is phenomenal. It’s always a fun ride when Black Sails carries its viewers along without giving them the chance to catch their breath. When an episode moves at this unforgiving pace, there is no chance for a breather nor is there a respite from the information…
What Lucifer Said: Favorite quotes from Supernatural “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”
Supernatural episodes are almost always funny but thanks to the dialogue and a certain man speaking said dialogue, I laughed a lot during “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” You know, when I wasn’t busy fearing for Sam’s life or wondering what in the world was going on with Dean and…
What They Said: The Flash, “Legends Of Today” and Arrow, “Legends Of Yesterday”
Two nights of Arrow +Â The Flash = what more could we ask for?! I don’t know what it is about blending these shows, but I canâ€™t help but feel that every time they come together, they somehow become greater than the sum of their parts. And thatâ€™s saying a lot…
What they Said: Top 4 Quotable Moments from Graceland “Little Bo Bleep”
Shoot outs. Fake outs. And long-awaited revelations. “Little Bo Bleep” was a jam-packed episode that wrapped up some loose ends and totally frayed others. Â It finally gave us one Sarkissian in jail and pulled back the curtain on Briggs’ master plan, but it also set up Jakes for a world…
What They Said: Favorite Quotes from Poldark “Part 4”
â€œWhat have I told you, I don’t require my wife to crochet and sip tea, but I do require her to remember she’s not a beast of burden.â€ No, Iâ€™m not talking about The Rolling Stones! I have to admit though, just for a second, the lyrics popped into my…
3 Moments of Goodness from Brooklyn Nine-Nine “Johnny and Dora”
The most satisfying part of this season’s finale has to the Jake and Amy kiss. Well, they kiss three times but the last one is the best one — and it means something. The Charles and Rosa dynamic was also great. I love how she’s convinced he doesn’t know anything…