It’s always an uphill battle for Murphy, that’s for sure. ‘In The Dark’s Perry Mattfeld spoke with HL about Max’s return, which relationship gets tested, and why Dean is such an ‘awesome villain’ for the show.
Murphy thought she had caught Dean for Tyson’s murder and he would serve time for what he did, but it didn’t quite work out that way. Because she had taped Dean’s confession without his consent, the tape was inadmissible. In the midst of this, Murphy finds herself wrapped up in a dangerous situation with Jess and Felix regarding Nia. In the April 23 episode of In The Dark, Max’s returns but don’t expect a happy ending for Murphy and Max just yet.
HollywoodLife talked EXCLUSIVELY with Perry Mattfeld about what’s Max’s return means for Murphy. She revealed the second episode of season 2 is “heartbreaking” and Murphy has to make some tough decisions. Max and Murphy’s relationship isn’t the only one being tested this season. Perry teased that Murphy and Jess’ relationship will be torn apart to “see how strong it is.” Plus, Perry weighed in about that flash-forward and admitted that the journey to get there is “shocking.”
Just when Murphy thought she’d won and caught Dean, there was yet another setback. She knows he’s guilty and he knows that she knows. Where does this leave Murphy in trying to get justice for Tyson?
Perry Mattfeld: We explained in season 1, and I think there’s a joke about it even in the first episode. Murphy was never going to be a detective. She can barely remember to plug in her phone, so it’s not like she had the knowledge of how to maneuver the cops and the Chicago PD and anything like that. I think it’s all pretty scary for her. The idea that she did think she had done the right thing and then realizes that she can’t even trust the system. Anything she did didn’t bring Tyson back. I think the one thing that did give her some closure was just knowing that she had done right by him and his family. So the fact that that went under not only did not bring him back but now look at the mess she’s not only in but she put her friends in.
One of the best scenes in the premiere was definitely the scene between Murphy and Chloe. At first, Murphy was going to tell Chloe that her dad’s a murderer, but she decided not to do that. How is Murphy going to navigate her relationship from here? Does knowing what Dean has done taint that relationship?
Perry Mattfeld: Well, it’s hard because when you’re keeping something from someone it’s hard to be around them at all. You’re constantly scared of: what if they bring it up? What if they ask? Something that I love about Dean and what I think makes him like such an awesome villain is that he doesn’t think he did anything wrong. But he genuinely and unconditionally loves his daughter so much. That is real. Everything he does is for her. I think Murphy throughout season 2, it’s a really interesting dynamic between her and Dean. As angry as she is at him, I know that she knows how much he loves his daughter. We kind of continue with this theme of good people doing bad things, and people making bad decisions. That’s part of what makes him such an awesome, complex villain, but Chloe is a heavy hitter this season. I’m so proud of her. I’m so glad that she’s here and part of the show. That relationship between Chloe and Murphy is something that will always be protected because of how important it is in terms of seeing the good and Murphy as well.
On top of this, Murphy has this new, dangerous journey that she’s in the middle of with Nia. What can you say about where this journey is going to take Murphy, Jess, and Felix?
Perry Mattfeld: We kind of closed that murder mystery in season 1. We got closure with that. In season 2, there’s still the murder mystery kind of element that launches us into more of that crime-thriller like Breaking Bad. I feel like season 1 was kind of our prologue because it just taught the audience who these people are and explained why Murphy’s the way she is and why she so extreme. We saw her at rock bottom, we understand who she is, and we meet all these people. In season 2, now we have a lot more room for them. This is where the ensemble takes off and we’re now all fighting the same battle. Again, it’s these good people in this situation as a unit fighting against the same force.
Jess has always been a rock from Murphy even though Murphy views herself as a lone wolf. Will their friendship be tested this season?
Perry Mattfeld: Something that I’m so proud of, and I admire our creator so much for this because she has really put not only a strong woman at the forefront but these strong female relationships at the forefront of our show as well. As much as in season 1 where there’s this love story between Murphy and Max, there’s always this constant love story between Murphy and Jess and their friendship. I feel like in season 1 we saw a lot of Jess coddling Murphy. It’s kind of that angel and devil thing. In season 2, the writers just tore that relationship apart to see how strong it is. Those lines get blurred of who is the perfect angel and who’s from the dark side. There’s a line that Murphy says at one point, “Welcome to the dark side.” That’s kind of the beginning of this really interesting interaction. I don’t think I’m allowed to say who Jess turns to when she needs to talk to someone, but it’s a very eye-opening conversation that Jess has about how she’s not much different than Murphy. The reason you guys so close is because you’re the same. I’m really proud of that female love story that’s just between two friends.
Max will be back in episode 2. What can you sort of say about that return?
Perry Mattfeld: Episode 2 is so heartbreaking. I feel like in episode 1 we now know this is the beginning of Murphy, Jess, and Felix are stuck in something really bad and they’ve gotten themselves into this really bad situation. Episode 2 is when I feel like Murphy especially starts to realize how that’s going to affect her. It’s really heartbreaking. I can’t say what happens between Murphy and Max yet, but I will say that all of her decisions from that moment on are for Max.
At the beginning of the episode and at the end of the episode, there was this shocking flash-forward. Will we get more footage of this flash-forward as the season goes on?
Perry Mattfeld: Yes. It was so fun to read though because we get the scripts as we’re filming, so we don’t know what’s going to happen next. At the beginning and end of the episode were these little flash words, so we never knew what was going on. Why is this person dead on the floor? Why is their blood all over Murphy’s face? Who is she talking to? Who’s there with her? What is she talking about? Every episode we’ll see a little bit more of that scene. As the season ends, our time will match up.
Ben was introduced at the end of the first episode, and he’s also the one dead in the flash-forward. What can you tease about Ben and how this season leads up to his death?
Perry Mattfeld: He’s one of my absolute favorite new characters this season. We have such strong, new actors that joined us this season. He brings a lot of comedy. He ends up in this very manipulative triangle between Felix and Chelsea knowing that Felix has a huge crush on his older sister. Why he ends up where he ends up in that flash-forward was shocking to me. It’s going to blow people away. It’s probably my favorite storyline of the season.