[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for the Evil Season 2 premiere “N Is for Night Terrors.”]
Evil Season 2 has finally premiered (a year and a half after we last got a new episode), and confirmation that psychologist Kristen Bouchard (Katja Herbers) did murder the serial killer threatening her family wasn’t the only surprising moment of its return. The evil Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson) turned to the church with a request for an exorcism.
And so Kristen had to evaluate him, sitting across him in his office much like the Demon Therapist did in Season 1. Considering the darkness that may or may not be in her, it’s such a great moment, one that means much more to viewers than to her (at least yet).
There is that attraction between Kristen and David — sexual and intellectual — but there are so many complications between them already: her marriage, his ordination, that vision he had of her with the Demon Therapist, her committing murder. Are there any new complications this season?
Michelle King: [Laughs] I think you kind of nailed it. We didn’t want to fall into that television trap of spending every episode in the will-they-won’t-they world, because that’s not so terribly interesting, but we love these two characters. And as you point out, there is both a physical and intellectual spark between them.
Robert King: And I think one of the temptations for Kristen is the general idea of sex because her husband’s away and has been away for a while. And for her, her worry might be about ruining a friendship with David to have sex with them, but it isn’t stopping her from at least being tempted to have sex.
How much are we going to see that Demon Therapist and how much might he be involved in everything that’s going on this season?
Robert: We’re always worried about overusing creatures. I believe he’s in three episodes.
Michelle: And yes, there’s an arc to that character.
Robert: Joel Harlow, who builds our creatures, does such an amazing job sometimes you want to shove them in every episode. But I do think one of the things that keeps the scares happening is you don’t overuse and you’re not sure what is going to come out of the next scene, which character might return, or is it a new one.
When did you know that you wanted to parallel Kristen sitting in that chair in Leland’s office with the Demon Therapist?
Robert: We thought it was funny. And then to have [Leland] laugh, we thought it would be a funny callback for the audience. But Kristen doesn’t know what that is about. We were even going as far as one episode, she keeps picking hair off the seat because it’s goat hair, but we decided not to go that far.
[Kristen’s husband] Andy [Patrick Brammall] had asked for [their daughter] Laura [Dalya Knapp] to be healed in exchange for his life with that chant in Season 1. Will that come up this season?
Robert: Yes, but in a different guise.
Speaking of Andy, he’s away again. How are you finding the balance of having him being in and out of Kristen’s life?
Michelle: It’s not so much us having to find the balances as she has to find the balance because it is not easy to have four kids that you’re responsible for and make the bulk of the money. That’s a tension in her life and raises the question, how committed is she to this marriage?
Robert: And how committed is he? Because at a certain point, those people who crave these adventures outdoors are people who live almost a gypsy life of being away and coming back, being away. But at a certain point, is there a better job for him that is not so off and running and has an element of danger to it, which has gotta be another worry about him.
There’s also the fact that when he thought something was going on with Ben [Aasif Mandvi] last season, he was like, “it’s OK if she’s with you, just let me know.” There wasn’t the anger that you might’ve expected.
Robert: I think that’s right. I think everybody finds accommodations, especially if they’re away from each other. Bicoastal marriages, I think, are difficult.
Leland thought he’d hidden that copy of the sigil map he’d written on well, but they did find it. What are we going to see in terms of that map this season?
Robert: Quite a bit. This map seems to be part of the structure for this 60. We’ll find out more over the course of the season. Just so you know, all these questions have answers. We’re not just kind of making them up, “Oh, it’s a mystery penguin or something.” But you hate kind of throwing all the mysteries away right away. You kind of want each mystery hopefully to go to a little more of a mystery. But that map, I would think, is one of the major keys for us for the whole show.
Evil, Sundays, Paramount+