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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 6 Finale: How the Show Ended

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 6 Finale: How the Show Ended

The year is 1925, and things have changed dramatically since we began with Downton Abbey in 1912 (or in our own time, 2010). The show has always remained gorgeous and comforting, even when it’s been heartbreaking, frustrating, and sometimes even a mess (remember Patrick?) Yet the sweeping score, the lush costuming, the grand halls and the cozy servants’ quarters have kept Downton a mainstay for PBS viewers for six seasons. And while it’s hard to think of the series coming to a close, everything was wonderfully wrapped up in “Episode 9,” which also served as the Christmas Special when it aired in England, and the series finale on all shores.

Though much of Season 6 was filled with strife and heartache, the finale was full of weddings and babies and happiness for seemingly everyone, which is really all we could hope for. Below you’ll find the outcomes for all of the major characters, as well as some comments about their journeys over this season, and the series as a whole. Fare thee well my honeys …

RELATED: ‘Downton Abbey: A New Era’: Release Date, Cast, Trailer, and Everything We Know So Far

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Lady Rose MacClare (Lily James)

There wasn’t any real reason to bring Rose back for the finale except that Lily James has become a proper star since her first appearances on Downton. Rose and Atticus (Matt Barber) are still in love, have a baby (who was left at home in America while they traveled to England), and Rose is still extremely hyperactive. She also got a final bit of revolutionary work in (she was always pushing the envelope in the house) when she took Robert to see Cora in her element at the hospital, which is when he finally came to his senses on the matter.

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Andy Parker (Michael Fox)

Andy was the last in a long line of “other footmen” that the show paraded through the house, but he was relatively charming, especially in his storyline regarding his illiteracy … even if he was particularly unfair to Thomas and the rumors in the house. His romantic feelings for Daisy seemed to come out of nowhere, but then again, so did his sudden desire to become a pig farmer. But good on him, and that was about as sexy as the show got this season when Andy was in his undershirt hammering nails on Mr. Mason’s roof. Ultimately, Daisy admitted that she had feelings for him, but whether the two did (or should) end up together remains uncertain.

Mr. Molesley (Kevin Doyle)

One of the few characters to consistently provide comic relief as well as an often heartbreaking story, Mr. Molesley finally got his due in the series finale when he accepted a teaching job in the village. There was a nice, slow build-up to Molesley’s secret talent as a teacher, as he assisted Daisy in her studies, ended up teaching Andy how to read, and showed he had a natural countenance with the students. Though his overtures towards Baxter (Raquel Cassidy) never seemed to lead anywhere (she was an incredibly useless character), there were hints that their close friendship might finally be leading to something more. Huzzah for Mr. Molesley then, finding his way in a changing world and also being given some true happiness.


Daisy Mason (Sophie McShera)

Daisy had a weird Season 6, one that included her being mostly incredibly annoying, though slightly revolutionary. She defended Mr. Mason’s right to stay on his property admirably, and yet, completely wrongly and in a way that ultimately did more harm then good. When Andy made his affections for her clear, she scorned him, then ended up letting everyone convince her — just like with William — of her own mind regarding him (“he’s a catch! Go for him!”) Look, Andy probably is a catch, but the two had no actual chemistry, and it seems unlikely with all of her new schoolings that Daisy will be content as the wife of a pig farmer, even one who looks that good hammering nails on a roof. In the end, Daisy (with Anna’s help) cut her hair into a modern bob and told Andy she had feelings for him. It was sweet, if largely unearned, and her future seems to mostly be a question mark.


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Mrs. Patmore (Lesley Nicol)

Mrs. Patmore didn’t have any major storylines to wrap up the season with, though there was a hint of romance between her and Mr. Mason (Paul Copley) throughout the season (and as all relationships between the older generation on the show, it was exceptionally sweet). One assumes she will be continuing to cook and complain about for her duration at Downton (and as one of my all-time favorite characters, I hope that she will find happiness, too).

Mr. Carson (Jim Carter)

Mr. Carson, formerly of the Cheerful Charlies, had a lot to juggle in Season 6. He and Mrs. Hughes did get married, but only after some shyness and awkwardness on both their parts. Carson then turned into a very complain-prone husband, attempting to run his household the same as Downton, and alienating his wife in the process (especially when it came to his conflicted loyalties to the Crawley family versus her preferences).

Carson also battled a tremor that turned out to be a palsy, causing him to ultimately retire from his position as Head Butler, yet remaining on in an advisory role, with Thomas at the helm. This seems to suggest that Carson and Mrs. Hughes can settle into a quieter routine at home, though with Carson still being able to have an outlet for his finicky nature. (It was also fitting that the Crawleys broke with tradition and kept Carson on even when most houses would have broken ties — he is basically part of the family, after all!)

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Mrs. Hughes (Phyllis Logan)

Mrs. Hughes (not to be called Mrs. Carson — it’s too weird) had her storyline mostly wrapped up with Mr. Carson this season, from their wedding (and her insistence that it not be at the Abbey) and talk of “marital duties,” to Carson’s complaints about her cooking and his struggle with his medical malady. Mrs. Hughes felt like she had a little bit of a diminished role, and a more of a retiring personality with Carson than we’ve ever seen before, but she ended the series by leading a rendition of “Auld Lang Syne” that was beautiful and touching.


John and Anna Bates (Brendan Coyle and Joanna Froggatt)

Oh, the Bateses … what other horrors and calamities could the show possibly throw on these two? Remember them in Season 1, before the murder(s) and the jail time and the rape and miscarriages? Season 6 continued their heartbreak and uncertainty (the two barely even shared scenes together) until the finale, where Anna had her (healthy!) baby, and the two seemed ready to — hopefully, God willing — put the past behind them and live as a happy family.

Thomas Barrow (Rob James-Collier)

Few characters have had it as rough as poor Mr. Barrow on the show, especially this season. Downton made him a villain, then redeemed him, then made him a villain again, then a hero, then turned everyone against him inexplicably this season. It led to his heartbreaking suicide attempt and Carson essentially forcing him out of service at the Abbey, which only further highlighted his loneliness and isolation. But, despite the goodbyes, Thomas ended back up at Downton to run the staff as Carson stepped back into an advisory role. The series set up that return in a way that could only have worked with Thomas, and he very much deserved the new position. Plus, now he can be for George what Carson was for Mary — a friend, confident, and surrogate family member. At least, we can hope.


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Isobel Crawley (Penelope Wilton)

After Matthew’s death, Downton struggled to find a place for dear cousin, Isobel, aside from being a kind of low-key liberal dissenter at the dinner table. But with the introduction of romance in the form of Lord Merton (a.k.a. Dickie, played by Douglas Reith), she and the Dowager Countess were able to form a bond of true friendship, with the two sharing a memorable scene where they essentially rescued Dickie from being kidnapped by his own son. Though the show was ready to give us another deathbed wedding, Dickie was miraculously cured (or rather, had been misdiagnosed) in the finale, meaning that he and Isobel seem to have a lovely future ahead of them.

Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham (Maggie Smith)

The Dowager had somewhat of a reduced role in the final season, though her quips were as on-point as ever. Though the show built up a bit showdown between the Dowager’s ladies maid Denker (Sue Johnston) and her butler Spratt (Jeremy Smith) over Spratt moonlighting as the advice columnist Cassandra (one of the show’s weirder subplots), it all fizzled away when Violet turned out to be tickled by the Cassandra column, and Denker was vanquished once again. The Dowager also got the final words of the series, speaking with Isobel, who commented, “We’re going forward to the future and not back into the past” in response to the Dowager’s comments about why toast the new year. Fittingly, she shot back, “If only we had the choice!”


Tom Branson (Allen Leech)

Though we were all heartbroken when Branson made the decision to move to America early in Season 6, it only made his eventual homecoming to Downton (of course) all the sweeter. It was wonderful to have Sybie back with her cousins as Downton: The Next Generation, and Branson ended up becoming everyone’s best friend and confidant. He and Robert even forged a nice bond by the end of the season, and he was instrumental in keeping Mary sane after the grief she suffered these last few seasons (and in modernizing the estate, let us not forget!) The series hinted at romance for Branson in the form of Edith’s editor, Miss Laura Edmunds (Antonia Bernath), who caught Edith’s wedding bouquet and gave our favorite Irishman a sly smile.

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Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham (Elizabeth McGovern)

Besides dressing Cora in fabulous clothes (including some to-die-for nightgowns), Downton Abbey has often struggled to give her a real niche in the family. With such a domineering mother-in-law and strong-willed daughters, it’s been hard to Cora to distinguish herself. But in Season 6, she finally got the opportunity to shine — and also show her teeth — as she battled the Dowager Countess over the hospital board position, as well as helping to run the hospital herself (and ease its merger with York). Cora ended the series strong, and in a good place with Robert — though as also mentioned in his section, who knows if that will really last.

Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham (Hugh Bonneville)

The Earl is a man who has constantly struggled with the soldiering on of modernity, clinging fast to the old traditions of the past, sometimes passionately. But for the most part, Robert is just a stubborn dad who can almost always be trampled over by his strong-willed wife and daughters, and by Season 6, was mostly a benevolent spirit (thanks to his new puppy). He got one exceedingly bizarre scene where he projectile-vomited blood, but in true Downton fashion that seems to have all ended up just fine. He was more perturbed by the war between his mother and Cora, and then Cora’s work at the hospital, which took her away from doting on him. Still, things ended with him recognizing Cora’s strengths, even praising her for it, and their marriage seems to be in a good place. Though with these two, who knows whether that will last.


Lady Edith Crawley (Laura Carmichael)

Poor Edith is poor Edith no more, literally, as she married the billionaire marquess Bertie (Herbert Pelham). But Edith’s long road to happiness also included her finally (and I do mean finally) letting everyone know about her secret daughter Marigold. She also had a great side story going on this season as she became the editor of her magazine, and one hopes she keeps it up. She could become a fabulous lady of London, much like her Aunt Rosamund (Samantha Bond), who was a better mother to her in these last seasons than Cora could hope to be. Ultimately, Edith got the marriage that everyone expected for Mary (including Mary), and good on her for it. She deserves that happiness and so much more.

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Lady Mary Crawley (Michelle Dockery)

Ah, Lady Mary. She really had become Queen Bitch in Season 6, after dismissing her (sometimes illicit) lovers from Season 5, and spending her time instead poking at Edith and making her miserable. Though she did have some tender moments with Carson and Anna (providing medical help for them as needed, especially for Anna and her difficult pregnancy), she was largely a pill. Her romance with race-car driver Henry (Matthew Goode) felt more forced than natural, and her being proud of him for become a used car salesman with Branson seemed wildly out of character.

Then again, she had gotten the news that she and (now-husband) Henry would be having a baby, which ended things nicely for the couple, who seem to have a long road ahead. Mary also eventually patched things up with Edith, too, telling Henry that while they aren’t friends, “we are sisters, and sisters have secrets.” Mary’s future with Downton seems bright, too, as she continues to modernize and run the estate with everyone’s full support. Here’s to the future … if only we had a choice!


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After Driving Again And More, Britney Spears Shares Her Latest Taste Of Post-Conservatorship Freedom

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After Driving Again And More, Britney Spears Shares Her Latest Taste Of Post-Conservatorship Freedom

They say it’s the simple things in life that are the most extraordinary, and that’s likely particularly true if you’ve been denied access to those things for an extended period of time. After Britney Spears was released from the conservatorship she’d been under, the singer has been reintroducing herself to some of life’s simple pleasures. Last summer Spears was super pumped about regaining the freedom to drive, and in January the “Toxic” singer documented drinking her first glass of wine in over a decade. The newlywed continued to celebrate the post-conservatorship life by sharing her first trip to a bar.

Fans of the former pop singer are accustomed to seeing Britney Spears dancing and twirling and modeling different outfits at her and Sam Asghari’s new home. However, the “Toxic” singer took her followers on an exciting field trip, in which she and her assistant patronized a local drinking establishment. She shared her trip — and a sarcastic remark — on Instagram:

(Image credit: Instagram)

As she and her assistant Victoria Asher apparently enjoyed a drink and an app, Britney Spears couldn’t help but throw a little shade at her family, remarking that she was “so so grateful” for not being allowed to have a cocktail for the 13 years after her father Jamie Spears took control of her life. In fact, the 40-year-old said in her post this is her first time to partake in such an adventure. In the video, she shared:

This is my first time at a bar. First time. I feel so fancy, and I feel so sophisticated.

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How ‘Yellowjackets’ Stars Survived Hollywood

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How ‘Yellowjackets’ Stars Survived Hollywood

Sure, they may have eaten a person back in the day. But there are some things the grown women of Yellowjackets just wouldn’t do. On this, the actresses who play them — Tawny Cypress, Juliette Lewis, Melanie Lynskey and Christina Ricci — agree, as they gather in a backyard in L.A.’s Topanga Canyon in late July, just a few weeks before they start filming the second season of their breakout show.

The Showtime survival thriller, created and executive produced by Ashley Lyle and Bart Nickerson, earned seven Emmy nominations, including outstanding drama series and acting nominations for Lynskey and Ricci. The Yellowjackets storyline alternates between 1996 and the present day as it follows members of a high school girls soccer team whose plane crashes and strands them for 19 months in the wilderness, where they resort to cannibalism to survive.

Part of the show’s nostalgic appeal relies on its casting of these actresses, three of whom audiences knew as young women for their slyly offbeat roles in films like The Addams Family (Ricci), Cape Fear (Lewis) and Heavenly Creatures (Lynskey), to play the crash survivors as adults. In this conversation with THR, Cypress, Lewis, Lynskey and Ricci disclose their ’90s regrets, share what it means when you call an actress “quirky” and reveal how survival bonds women — including in the trenches of Hollywood.

Who here knew each other before the show?

MELANIE LYNSKEY (Points to Christina Ricci.) We knew each other a little bit. I went to a Nick Cave concert by myself, and Christina came up and —

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CHRISTINA RICCI I was very excited to see you.

LYNSKEY So excited. We were having a lovely chat, and then she’s like, “Are you here by yourself?” She’s the coolest person of all time, and I was intimidated. I just felt embarrassed to say, “I’ve come to a concert by myself.” I was like 24 or something.

RICCI I was impressed because I couldn’t go anywhere by myself.

LYNSKEY I also went to see Clay Aiken by myself because nobody would come with me.

It’s surprising that none of you had worked together over the years.

JULIETTE LEWIS It’s wild when you’ve been around so long, and you sort of have a kindred connection to people. There’s certain actors you’re like, “Mmm, we’re not of the same tree,” and then there’s other actors you’re like, “Oh, yeah. We have some roots.”

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Juliette, Melanie and Christina, all three of your Wikipedia entries say some version of, “Often plays quirky or offbeat characters.” What do those words mean to you?

LEWIS Real people, specific and unpredictable.

LYNSKEY I remember I got cast in a movie when I was like 21, and the description of the character before I auditioned was “Blah, blah, blah, the beautiful girl who sits next to him in school.” Then, at the table read, it had been changed to “Blah, blah, blah, cute and quirky.” I was like, “You don’t need to change it. Just keep it …” They’re like, “We better change this description or people will be like, wrong actress.” So, sometimes it feels … I don’t know. I never liked that word, “quirky.”

RICCI When you say that all of us had this description, that to me speaks to a past time, when, if you weren’t the leading-lady ingenue then you were quirky and offbeat. All right, so there’s two groups for actresses? In a way, I’m fine with being in the category I’m in because what it means to me is that I have made an effort in my career to do things that I feel like I haven’t seen before. So, in some ways, I like it. In other ways, I’m like, “Ugh.” It’s a little dismissive. A little cute and dismissive.

LEWIS We come from the ’90s where, when I had blond hair, I was the pretty airhead, and then I dyed my hair dark, and I was the wisecracking, sarcastic girl. But yeah, I think it’s really neat that we’ve all carved this path of range and specificity.

Isn’t another term for that “character actor”?

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RICCI But “character actress” used to be something they used to describe an ugly woman.

TAWNY CYPRESS Or Abe Vigoda.

RICCI Back in the late ’90s, my agents were always like, “We have to be so careful you don’t become a character actress. If we’re not careful, you’re going to end up just like Jennifer Jason Leigh.” I was like, “I like her.” They were so afraid of me not being a leading lady, of me not being sexually attractive to people. It was really the last thing I ever wanted, was for anyone to be attracted to me.

LEWIS My dad was a character actor. So to me, it was something that was super noble. It was a world of adventure and not limiting. I rebelled against the system, the PR system of being in some bizarre idea of beauty. I really revolted against that, for better or for worse. Crying in a bathroom at a photo shoot, like, “I won’t come out.” They want these doe-eyed looks. That’s for sure what I didn’t do in pictures, so I always looked slightly insane, which I prefer over, like, “Do you want to fuck me?”

Tawny, what was your sense of what the expectations were for you when you were starting out?

CYPRESS I’ve had a different row to hoe. I’ve spent my whole career doing shitty roles of the sassy one on the side. Honestly, growing up as an actor, I wanted to be an ingenue.

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LEWIS Isn’t that funny? And I wanted to be sassy and opinionated.

CYPRESS I couldn’t be an ingenue. I just couldn’t. It’s just not in me, you know? I was never presented with those roles, ever, and I was like, “Oh, OK. That’s not who I am.” I sort of, growing older, have embraced my Jersey side, and I am who I am, and this is what you get.

LYNSKEY I started calling myself a character actor in interviews when I was really young because I think it was reclaiming the term or something. I think I just was like, “That’s what I am.” My agents had all that kind of intensity around it, too. I remember when I did Coyote Ugly

RICCI Oh my God, you got a piece in that? I went up for that, and I didn’t get it.

CYPRESS I did too.

LYNSKEY I played the best friend from Jersey. But the scrutiny that was on Piper [Perabo], who’s one of the coolest, smartest women, just the way people were talking about her body, talking about her appearance, focusing on what she was eating. All the girls had this regimen they had to go on. It was ridiculous. I was already starving myself and as thin as I could possibly be for this body, and I was still a [size] four. That was already people putting a lot of Spanx on me in wardrobe fittings and being very disappointed when they saw me, the costume designer being like, “Nobody told me there would be girls like you.” Really intense feedback about my physicality, my body, people doing my makeup and being like, “I’m just going to help you out by giving you a bit more of a jawline and stuff.” Just the feedback was constantly like, “You’re not beautiful. You’re not beautiful.” In your early 20s, so much of it is about beauty, and how people respond to you, and do people want to fuck you? Do people think you’re their best friend? Even the best friend thing, I started to be like, “I don’t want to do that too many times.”

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Did you have to unlearn anything that people tried to teach you when you were starting out?

LEWIS I had developed such a survival mechanism to protect my autonomy, sort of, “You don’t own me. You don’t tell me my value. Only I do.” I was extremely self-critical — it still happens — of my work. It’s almost like a defense mechanism that no one could talk shit about me more than I can. There’s all these things that are wrapped up in how to survive a system. That’s what I’m unlearning today — to be softer. This is a really remarkable industry to be a part of. I feel honored to be a part of it and what it gave me, but I do still hold on to what it took from me in my youth.

Given what you all experienced coming into the industry, do you feel at all protective of the younger actresses who play the younger versions of your characters?

LYNSKEY (Begins to cry.) So much. I feel very protective. At the beginning of production, I sent them all an email, and I just was like, “Whatever you need, if you need a voice, if you need someone to go to the producers for you, whatever you need,” and they were kind of like, “Cool. Thanks.” They’re fine.

CYPRESS Totally fine. Jas [Jasmin Savoy Brown] was a boss on set. She’s like, “This is how we’re doing my hair. This is what we’re doing.”

RICCI They’re very much of a different generation.

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CYPRESS I am protective of Jas in the fact that she is so sexually positive, which I love. She has taught me so much, just knowing her as a person. But I’m like a mama bear to her, or a big sister. I’m like, “What are you putting online right now?” She’s like, “Whatever. Whatever. This is life, man. I love myself.” I’m protective, but I’m also in awe of her, you know?

LEWIS But there is a thing I always want to say to young people: Cultivate other interests deeply so that you’re not getting all your life’s blood from this industry, or your self-worth.

Is there anything you miss about the ’90s?

LYNSKEY I have a lot of love letters from the ’90s.

RICCI Someone used to fax me love letters when he was on tour. I did not save them. I throw everything out. I had a specific thing when I was a child, that we would be punished by the things that we loved being destroyed. My husband, who is a much healthier individual, has gone back and found all my old magazine covers on Etsy because he thinks it’s horrible that I never saved them. As a child, I learned that this is going to be taken from me, so why save it anyway?

LYNSKEY That’s heartbreaking. Well, I saved everything because I’m basically an emotional hoarder. I have this literal suitcase, an old-fashioned suitcase.

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RICCI This is very dark, but I would just like to go back to that age and do it over again and not make so many fucking mistakes. Honestly, I regret so much.

CYPRESS Me too. One thousand percent.

LEWIS Me too.

RICCI I’d like to go back to 1996 and be like, “All right … we had a practice run. It went OK, but it wasn’t really as great as we wanted it to be. We’re going to do this again.” People who are like, “I have no regrets.” What fucking magic life did you live?

LEWIS Where they go, “I don’t regret anything because that led up to this moment.” Really? The thing that could’ve put my dad in an early grave, I fucking regret it. Yes. I was very scary as a young teenage person.

CYPRESS Yeah. I hurt a lot of people growing up, and I wish that I didn’t. I was going through my memory box. It was my great-great-grandmother’s she brought over from Hungary. It’s huge, and it’s filled to the brim with everything from my life. I came across a note from high school. It was my first gay friend, and it broke my heart because he was like, “I want to thank you for not talking to me anymore and just cutting me off the way that you did. It made it hurt less.” I literally was crying, and I had to call him and be like, “I just came across this note, and I’m so sorry that I was that person to you.” When I think back, I think how wonderful our relationship was, but I was a shit, you know? I would definitely do so many things differently.

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LEWIS I’ve had those moments where I turned into … Because I’ve been bullied, but when I was 11 and got in a fight with a girl, I was mean [the same way] how a girl was mean to me. I was really vicious.

LYNSKEY I think people without regrets are narcissists. I think they’re lying to themselves.

RICCI Denial is the only way to get up that river.

What did you all feel when you learned that Roe v. Wade was overturned?

RICCI It’s really horrible to be told so plainly what your value is.

LEWIS I wish the two factions can talk, like, “Hey, what do you do with a bad situation, poverty and drug addiction, and rape?” You have to have an option that is salvageable or is sustainable for the survival of a person, a woman who’s living.

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CYPRESS I don’t really give a shit what your reason to have an abortion is. It’s your fucking body. I don’t really fucking care. You don’t want to be a mom, right? That’s your fucking decision. Look, we can put morals on it and say, “Well, only when you’re raped, or only if it’s …” It’s like no, dude. It’s either in or out. We’re either telling women what to do with their bodies or we let them have their own choice. I am of the mind, choice. I’m not going to judge you for making that decision.

LYNSKEY And there seems to be this general lack of compassion and empathy that’s just growing and growing. There’s so much hatred, and people are unable to look at another person’s life and go, “Oh, you know, that’s an untenable situation,” or even, “That’s a difficult situation.” There’s no grace given to anybody else. There’s no empathy. You don’t get to make decisions for somebody else. You don’t know what’s right for them.

Is there a place for TV and film in that conversation?

CYPRESS I mean, that’s what TV and film do. That’s what art is. On Yellowjackets, let’s talk about Shauna’s baby in the woods, you know? Yeah. I think we have a lot of room to speak on this subject, and I hope we do.

Did anybody have their kids on set for season one?

LYNSKEY (Points to Ricci.) We did.

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RICCI And I was pregnant. I didn’t tell anyone but these ladies that I was pregnant for six months. When we started, I was six weeks pregnant. It was difficult. There were so many times where I was like, “Ooh, when they find out I’m pregnant, and they made me sit in this smoky room all day. When they realize that they made me stand for eight hours, and I’m pregnant, and I have this horrible sciatica, and it’s 100 degrees, oh, they’re going to feel so bad.” They didn’t feel bad at all. But anyway, it was fine. In fact, it would’ve been helpful if I was playing a more emotional character because I can give a real good performance when I’m pregnant, real emo.

How would you finish the sentence, “Yellowjackets is really about …”?

CYPRESS Women. PTSD.

LYNSKEY Trauma.

CYPRESS Friendship.

RICCI Haunting, the way trauma haunts you. The way you can never escape. The way it twists people in different ways.

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LEWIS Aberrant survival tactics.

We know that these characters have done a bunch of aberrant things, as you say, including cannibalism. But do you have in your mind an idea that, “OK, she may have eaten another human being, but she would never do this“?

RICCI I know when they confront me because I’m like, “OK, she wouldn’t do that.” Misty wouldn’t drink that drink. Originally, in the script, she was drinking a Brandy Alexander, and I said, “No, Misty would drink a chocolate martini.” I have rules and stuff for her in my head, and they do conflict with the writers sometimes. I don’t think she actually is interested in men, at all. I think she does it because she’s bored, or because she thinks that’s what she’s supposed to do. Then, she’s also realized that she can have a lot of fun trying to trick them into having sex with her when they don’t want to. It’s like men will kind of know that you don’t want to have sex with them, but if they can get you to have sex with them, they won.

LEWIS It’s a power thing.

RICCI Misty’s way of doing it is through this really horrible manipulation, making him feel guilty and having sex with her while feeling guilty, which would be a terrible experience.

When you have a different perspective on your character than the writers, what do you do?

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RICCI That’s part of the thing with TV that I’ve learned now, being involved in a production but not being one of the EPs, so you aren’t a part of creating what people do. “OK, they wrote this scene. I have to play this scene. If she was in this situation, how the fuck would she be in this situation, and why would she be?” Then, you don’t have to tell other people what you come up with. They can find out about it later when you do press.

Does anybody else have a line in their mind that their character wouldn’t cross?

LYNSKEY I had one. There was something written into a script where I was going on a date with my lover, and they had me going into my daughter’s bedroom and taking her underwear, which was just not practical because I wouldn’t fit it. She’s little. But also, ew. I think there was something, apparently, somewhere, people liked the thing in the pilot where I’m masturbating in my daughter’s bedroom. I was like, “Can that just be an isolated incident? I don’t want it to be a theme.” So I just was like, “I don’t want to do that.” They were great about it.

LEWIS It comes, I think, with experience and respect, that they appreciate if you have a point of view. I have an “anything goes” stamp on me, which they all know. But I have strong ideas, especially about my trajectory in midlife. I’ve looked at Natural Born Killers recently, and I’m like, “Jesus.” Thank goodness I had a partner like Woody Harrelson, but it is so sexual. No one forced me into that. I was a young nihilist who didn’t give a fuck, and I felt comfortable with Woody, and I liked the material. But nowadays, I’m very particular. So, they had written a sex scene, and I was like, “I don’t know. I don’t know that she even gets off. I don’t know that she even can have orgasms.” That’s how deep I went. So it was more like, is she doing something to get something? At the end of the day, I just didn’t even think she fucks, sorry to be so graphic, at this juncture that you saw in season one. I think she might’ve had relationships with all of them in the wilderness. I don’t know if they’re going to write it, but that’s what I’d like to think of Natalie.

LYNSKEY That’s what I think too.

RICCI What? I never thought of that. Who would they be making out with? I guess each other.

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The finale hints that there may be additional Yellowjackets who survived into adulthood. Have actors been cast for those roles?

LEWIS Wait, Melanie, didn’t you say that on our chain, that someone we like is cast to be … (At this point there is meaningful eye contact among the four women.)

RICCI We don’t know for sure. That’s what we’ve heard was close to happening.

LYNSKEY We don’t know anything.

On season one, you were making this show under the radar. Now there’s so much fan speculation. Does that change the way you approach the work?

RICCI There’s more pressure going into season two.

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CYPRESS Have you guys also had that feeling of like, “Can I do this? Is it going to be good, the second season? Am I going to fuck this character up?”

LYNSKEY I have those fears.

RICCI Me too, but because TV is so fast, and you have so little time with the information, the process of talking about the show afterward helps you to evolve your take on your character. To understand things that were intended with the character that maybe weren’t clear originally because you get to hear the EPs talk about it. I’m going to make changes in the next season based on what I have come to realize through all this talking.

Like what?

RICCI Well, that’s a secret.

How much do you want to know about the path that your character is on?

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CYPRESS Fuck, I want to know everything. I sit there, and when I think about the show, I think, “What the fuck are they going to do with this character?” There’s so many different parts to her right now. The dog thing. She’s now a senator. There may be an old love coming back, you know? I’m like, “How are they going to do this?” I just want to know.

LYNSKEY Now you’re a full-time dog killer.

RICCI I didn’t even know that you were supposed to be the one that killed the dog.

CYPRESS What?

RICCI I thought, “Oh, well maybe somebody broke in.”

LYNSKEY That could still be, right?

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CYPRESS Wait, give me more to think about.

So you don’t go to the writers and say, “To be clear, did I kill the dog?”

CYPRESS Oh, we do. They just say, “Mmm.”

RICCI “We don’t know.”

CYPRESS But they do know.

RICCI I don’t think they’re trying to control us with no information or anything. Sometimes, they don’t want to commit to something that hasn’t been necessarily set in stone. I do find it frustrating to not know, and we’re never able to know fully. I have decided to learn how to function with knowing nothing.

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Interview edited for length and clarity.

This story first appeared in the Aug. 3 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.

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James Gunn Addresses Peacemaker Future Amid Batgirl Cancelation

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James Gunn Addresses Peacemaker Future Amid Batgirl Cancelation

Shockwaves from Warner Bros.’s cancelation of Batgirl have had many fans questioning the possibility of other DC-connected projects following suit. Amid outcries from fans of Batgirl, Michael Keaton, Brendan Fraser, and even Snyderverse fans who are always eager to picket Warner Bros., Peacemaker fans started asking James Gunn whether there was any possibility that his DC work was going to suffer amid the company’s cost-cutting exercise. Ironically, considering the history that led James Gunn to work with DCEU characters, it seems that the director and his shows are the only ones who are “safe.”

What seems like a lifetime ago, James Gunn was all set to start work on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 for Disney and Marvel Studios when some old Twitter posts led to him being unceremoniously sacked. By the time Disney backtracked on their firing, Gunn was already committed to directing The Suicide Squad for Warner Bros., which is why Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has taken so long to arrive. Now, during all the chaos at Warner Bros., it appears that Gunn is not worried at all about the second season of Peacemaker getting the ax. When asked if the show was safe, Gunn simply replied:

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“Yes, guys, calm down.”

That is a relief for fans of the small sub-universe Gunn is building inside the DCEU, which along with The Suicide Squad and Peacemaker, is set to include at least another unannounced project and be linked to the Amanda Waller series that is in development. At least that side of the franchise doesn’t appear to be going anywhere.


Related: Peacemaker: Will More Suicide Squad Members Appear in Season 2?

Is Warner Bros. Still Planning on Rebooting The DCEU?

There have been rumors of a “soft-reboot” coming to the DCEU for a long time, and while it seems at times like Warner Bros. is heading in that direction, they have constantly denied any such intention. During San Diego Comic-Con, the entire focus of the Warner Bros. live-action DC panel was on Black Adam and Shazam! Fury of the Gods. Both of these movies have their small links to the wider DCEU, and once again, Warner Bros. seemed to be causing confusion by including a Justice League montage within the Shazam sequel while at the same time professing that they are not revisiting that particular DCEU set up in any way.

One thing clear from Dwayne Johnson’s appearance at SDCC is that he believes that Black Adam is setting the tone for a new DCEU, and based on everything else that is happening, he could be right. While there is no way of telling exactly where the franchise will be heading beyond The Flash in 2023, with new additional entries like Wonder Woman 3 constantly being stuck in limbo, it has been made clear that some big changes are being made in regards to the DCEU and fans will be hoping that those changes bring some kind of consistency to the franchise before it ends up crashing down around itself.

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