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Miracle Workers: Dark Ages finds the funny in misery, adds array of guest stars
After the first season of TBS’s Miracle Workers ranked as the number-one new comedy, the series was picked up for a second season and moved forward as an anthology. Season 2 premieres on Jan. 28 with the adjusted title, Miracle Workers: Dark Ages.
At the Television Critic’s Association WarnerMedia presentation today, creator/executive producer Simon Rich brought out his returning cast: Geraldine Viswanathan, Karan Soni, Steve Buscemi, and (via satellite) Daniel Radcliffe to explain the new time period and the new season’s focus.
Since the series' concept is based on Rich’s own short stories, he said he dipped into medieval history to mine the period for its misery and widespread ignorance. “I thought maybe I’d use this time period as a metaphor for problems we face in contemporary society,” he explains.
“We were also inspired by comedies like Blackadder, which we have specific references for this season, and we’re huge Monty Python fans,” Rich continues. “But it’s less of a medieval satire, and more of a show about today with a slant.”
A huge theme of this season is struggling with expectations when it’s against your own internal compass. In particular, Geraldine now plays Alexandra, who is apprenticing to be a doctor when it’s the last thing she wants to do. And Radcliffe this time plays a “tyrannically stupid” prince who isn’t interested in continuing the path of violence and bloodlust established by his king father.
Playing that king is Peter Serafinowicz (The Tick), who will join other guest stars for the season including Greta Lee (Russian Doll), Jamie Demetriou (Fleabag), and Fred Armisen as an egomaniacal rock (or maybe lute?) star.
As for whether Rich already has an idea for Season 3, he teased that he does. “All of the seasons are based on my fiction, so I assume I will mine from that again. But I also consult with the cast early in the process and we work together to craft the characters. They come into the writer’s room. We picked the cast for a reason because they are versatile, fearless, and work well together. I solicit their feedback because I trust them, and they are as excited as we are.”