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'Evil' creators on the 'escape hatch' of the Season 3 finale reveal, and what's to come in Season 4
Evil's third season ended with yet another wild reveal.
Evil is one of the most beloved genre shows airing right now for a number of reasons, not least of which is its ability to keep viewers on their toes. Season 3 was no different in that regard, and the season finale, which dropped Sunday on Paramount+, retained the now-traditional Evil element of a last-minute twist that sets the stage for even more weirdness in the upcoming Season 4.
**Spoilers for Season 3 of Evil below.**
While Season 2 ended with Kristen (Katja Herbers) and David (Mike Colter) finally resolving some of that longstanding sexual tension with a kiss, Season 3's conclusion took things in a very different direction. After dealing with the wildest baby shower in history, Kristen finally learned what happened to her lost egg, which went missing from RSM Fertility and left her grasping for some solution to the mystery. Sadly for Kristen, it turned out the answer was in the worst possible place: Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson), the show's longest-running and perhaps most insidious antagonist. And Leland didn't just take the egg. He also already put it inside a surrogate, and now he's even got Kristen's own mother (Christine Lahti) on his side.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly about the reveal, Evil creator Robert and Michelle King explained that they'd had the idea to get Kristen's egg into Leland's hands for a while. It was just a matter of when they wanted to deploy, and Robert King noted that they'd decided "about mid-season" to deploy the reveal as this season's big twist.
"Yeah, I think you always leave yourself the escape hatch," Robert King said. "Because we had so many reveals that we wanted to pursue over the first two seasons, I think we were holding this in our back pocket. The pattern had been set in the first season that you end with… not just a cliff hanger, which is reductive, but a chapter changer. Something that changes everything."
Michelle King added, "Yeah, I was going to say a 'universe changer' for the characters."
The Leland reveal definitely raises the stakes of the character's longstanding rivalry with Kristen, and will of course likely have a major impact on how David sees not just Leland, but the nature of evil in the world in general. The problem now is figuring out exactly how to progress that story, while still keeping Evil's episodic fun and other long-running story concerns intact. That, the Kings noted, is the biggest challenge of their particular writing style.
"We like very much the idea of writing ourselves into a corner," Michelle King said. "We like less the idea of having to figure it out afterwards. [Laughs]"
Robert King added, "Yeah, the end of the second season was a good one because it ended with them kissing, clearly moving to f---ing. So when we went to the writers' room, it was like, 'Okay, congratulations! Last year, that was a good end. Now what do we do?' You're always trying to find some escape clause. That's the good thing about having seven other writers who can put their minds together."
Now, it's on to Season 4. The show has already been renewed for another year, and Michelle King noted that the writers' room is a few weeks out from convening to begin work on the next round of episodes. As for what might happen in those episodes, the Kings made it clear that they don't spend much time planning ahead. There's no grand master plan for what the next several years of Evil might look like. There's only whatever might be next.
"One of the dangers of a long-running show is pre-plotting too much," Robert King said. "If I know what I'm going to do in the seventh season, there's not enough organic energy of how you get from A to B. There's not enough surprise. If there's something political or something in the news, we can say, why don't we do something that plays on this? So we're leaving ourselves a little blank slate at this point."
All three seasons of Evil are now streaming on Paramount+.
Looking for something horrific to watch? Peacock has lots of horror movies to keep you suitably scared including The Amityville Haunting, The Changeling, Firestarter, and several Saw movies.