Revolution's Elizabeth Mitchell

Revolution's Rachel tells us why 'nobody's safe' in tonight's premiere

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Sep 25, 2013, 4:01 PM EDT

When it comes to NBC's Revolution, what happened last season is a world apart from where tonight's premiere will take us in season two. After trying to turn the power back on in the season one cliffhanger, we'll discover what happened and then the story will pick up three months later where things have not gone well for Charlie, Rachel and the gang, said actress Elizabeth Mitchell, who plays Rachel Matheson on the J.J. Abrams/Erc Kripke show.

“Nobody's safe. Nothing's safe. The whole thing is always on edge, very much like the world itself. It's always a surprise. I never know where it's going. I don't get a script and go, 'Oh, I expected that to happen.' I'm always like, 'What?!'” said Mitchell in an exclusive interview with Blastr.

“I think they did a really brave thing, which is they're making exactly the show that they want to make,” she said. “It's still an adventure. There's some really dark stuff and some really sexy stuff and some really light stuff. I just admire [creator] Eric [Kripke] for doing exactly what he wants to do. So I'm excited about it. I like bravery on television. I think that's how it should be. There's nothing cookie-cutter about this show or this season.”

Last season we learned Rachel was one of the scientists behind why the power went off 15 years earlier. She lived in captivity for years with Monroe trying to find out her secrets, she killed a colleague, she was reunited with daughter Charlie and her son died. Then she helped to turn the power back on only to have “patriot” Randall fire missiles at Atlanta and Philadelphia in a plot to reunite the country.

Tonight we'll find out what happened with those missiles, and we'll discover that the events have taken their toll on Rachel.

“Someone said 'Rachel's my favorite character,' and I'm like, 'Oh, so you like 'em crazy, do ya?' She definitely is unhinged. And I think for good reason. To me that speaks well of her after everything that she's been through because if she were completely sane after killing millions and millions and millions of people, I would worry. I think it's about right,” said Mitchell.

“You're talking about someone who [was] trying to develop clean energy. You're talking about someone who is an immense pacifist and has a great morality. All of those things, she's based her life around that, and look what she does,” she said.

What happens to Rachel is “what you would expect to happen to a good person who has done so much evil,” she said. “What I would expect to happen, that goes that way, and then it all just everything goes to heck – I have a 7-year-old, so I can't swear,” laughed Mitchell. “So everything goes to heck and then it all resolves a little bit and then the next huge problem comes up. But we do get to see a little bit more of her and Miles and a little bit more about her history and a little bit more about who she is and how she came into being. I like that. I always find figuring out a character's backstory is such a lovely treat, you know?”

Still, don't expect to discover all of Rachel's secrets anytime soon. “I feel like she's someone who, no, you never will ever quite get the whole story from her. And I like that. I like the fact that she plays her cards so close. It makes her interesting, because you don't know what she's going to do next,” she said.

NBC's Revolution
Revolution, Elizabeth Mitchell

Mitchell – who's had an acting career filled with rich characters, including Juliet, one of the Others on Lost, and Detective Erica Evans, who fought aliens on V – is thrilled with Rachel's development as a character.

“I like how smart she is. I think it's really fun for me to play someone who is, in fact, a genius, because I just find the way that that mind works so unbelievably fascinating. There's so much there. There's so many layers. I like that a lot. In some ways, it's almost childlike. So that's fun for me.”

She also likes that the writers “haven't tried to make her in any way likable. That they haven't tried to make her a cookie-cutter hero. I love that they have continued to make her immensely complex and I would like to continue that. I think that's where we come up with more interesting characters and I love that. Characters on their struggle towards humanity and their struggle towards achieving their goals and trying to be who they are. Those are my wishes, that they keep her as complex in every possible way as they have, just because it's interesting to play and because I want to see how it turns out,” said Mitchell.

After dealing with the loss and the events of season one, the rebels will find themselves pushed back together this season as they take on the new big bad, the President of the United States and his patriots.

“The whole thing was very surprising and different. The whole of the story. Somehow, I think that's what you have to do in the show to keep the adventure. And there's really no stopping it, because as long as you have these characters continuing to battle, continuing to try to survive, I think you can keep going on any number of paths. I found that really surprising. It doesn't feel like there's an endgame, but it feels like there are some crescendos,” said Mitchell.

When it comes to Rachel and the other characters, they're “still family, in a really, really awkward and kind of wonderfully horrible way. And I think oddly there's a little bit of home in there. There's a little bit of defending and coming together for sure. But obviously there's still a tremendous battle going on, and survival. The survival part is really where the fun is, I think. But the defending of the home is ... I don't know. Maybe it's just me and my love of the history and discovery and sci-fi films, but I always find those little tiny moments when you get to see people living their lives, and that's what they're fighting for, that's what I always live for in a show. I like those little moments of normalcy when we see why we're creating this big fuss,” she said.

While this season promises to be filled with shocking events, death and a big bad President, one thing's for certain. Miles is going to kiss somebody.

“I know. It's totally a Captain Kirk kind of thing,” said Mitchell. “Every time they go a little further with the Rachel/Miles romance, I'm like, 'He can't kiss everybody! Don't take that away.' I like that. I think that's kind of great. It's fun when our heroes get to kiss everyone. I think that we should ask for the same for Rachel. Maybe that's going to be her thing. She and Miles will just ride off into the sunset and kiss everybody.”

Here's a look at Revolution's season two, which premieres on NBC at 8 p.m. ET.

What do you think about the new direction for the series?