The Strain‘s second season ended in a dark place, with the deaths of two of the show’s female characters and the kidnapping of Zack Goodweather (Max Charles) by his vampire mother Kelly (Natalie Brown).
The finale shocked fans of the series with the death of Nora (Mia Maestro), who chose to take her own life after being infected by Kelly. Book fans know that Nora was one of the lucky few who survived to the end of the series and while the series’ executive producer Carlton Cuse assures fans that “sadly and unfortunately Nora is dead,” both he and The Strain‘s co-creator Chuck Hogan insist that the decision to deviate from the books was not an easy one.
“It was something that came out of really thinking big about the story and what would really energize things going ahead,” said Hogan. I feel like the at the end of season 2 will push [Eph] even further in season 3.”
Cuse agreed,”It was a very hard decision because Mia Maestro is one of the most wonderful people you’ll ever meet and a very fine actress. She was a really great part of the show but I think on some level the audience needs to be told narratively that no one is safe…. We felt like it was an event that we felt we needed to…move Eph into the place that he needs to be for season 3. We felt like the impact would be shocking and…it was a big tragic turn in our story. The stakes have been raised. You see it on Lost, Game of Thrones and I think the reality of television storytelling is that you have to be willing to do some bold things in order to not have the audience feel like the narrative is predictable.”
Along with Nora’s death, the other WTF outcome of the climactic scene between she, Kelly and Zach was the frustrating choice that Zach made to leave (that’s right, just simply walk away) with his strigoi mother. As it turns out, the Master has something very specific in store for the angsty kid. “If you read the books his role is pretty interesting and significant and he has a fairly complicated relationship with the Master and what exactly is going on there is one of the big dramatic questions thats in the books and we’re doing our own version of that in the series. Obviously, Zack has kind of gone into a very dark place and that’s interesting in storytelling,” teased Cuse.
Another mysterious plot point that will be focused on when the show returns is digging deeper into the enigma that is Quinlan aka The Born. Hogan promises that “We’ll definitely be finding out some things about him for sure. He’s a really really fun character to write. We’ve had a lot of fun teasing out the mystery, but absolutely certain questions will be answered and he’ll be an integral part of the narrative moving ahead in season 3.”
As a whole, it sounds like viewers should be ready for the action to get kicked up a few notches in the next season. “In season 3 things might move a little more quickly, there might be more time jumps so you get a sense of things falling and really going into a serious collapse,” promises Hogan.
“In story terms we have the book, we have the Occido Lumen…so that opens up a lot of possibilities,” he also said. “At the same time, it’s going to attract a lot of unwanted attention from the other side too. We def won’t see our gang necessarily living and working out of the same place. I do think the feel of the show in season 3 isn’t going to be radically different, but we are going to be advancing the story faster and getting more of a world view to really speed up the storytelling even more.
The 10 episode third season of The Strain returns in 2017.
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Photo Credit: FX