The Cast Reacts to 4 Major Moments From the Season 2 Finale
By Marissa Blanchard
The cast and showrunner Jenny Bicks share what went into creating a chaotic party scene with surprises for several characters.
Robert repays Frances in a big way.
Sarah Jessica Parker (Frances DuFresne): It’s very meaningful. It was always hard for Robert because there was so much anger and resentment between them — it’s very hard to see the good in another person whom you’ve had a legal battle with.
When Robert says to Frances at the end of Season 1 that he’s appreciative of everything she’s done, that’s the beginning of his ability to recognize what sustained them as a family, not just the things that have disappointed and hurt him about Frances . It’s also important for Robert’s character to feel like he’s on the road to feeling like a productive person again.
Thomas Haden Church (Robert DuFresne): Frances would’ve never expected it. The gallery is really starting to pick up speed — she doesn’t need that money. The way that Frances is developed throughout the show, she wouldn’t ask for it because she’s too dignified. It was such a genuine gesture, even though Frances is a bit reluctant to take it.
Another party at Nick and Diane’s ends in chaos.
Tracy Letts (Nick Clavowen): I had that secret in my back pocket from the beginning of the season. We’ve made this television show about people of a certain economic strata — Nick is very wealthy, but sometimes people don’t come about their wealth in a very ethical way. Nick is very fun to play — I get to throw all my ethics out the door.
Molly Shannon (Diane Clavowen): Tracy Letts did know what was going on and was like, “Do you want me to tell you?” And I was like, “No, I don’t want to know! Don’t tell me.” I didn’t know until I got the last script — I didn’t want to play the role knowing the reveal. I wanted to play the scenes not knowing, like my character; I truly never knew what was coming.
Talia Balsam (Dallas Holt): I like how the second season finale bookends with how the first season opens — a party and that’s a disaster. I thought it was a great way to end it; everything is a little up in the air. I love Frances’ line: “I told you not to have any more parties Diane.” It never ends well for Diane.
Frances tells off Skip and turns him down.
Sarah Jessica Parker: I really liked that — I fought for that. The original ending had Frances calling Skip and saying, “Hey, can we talk?” I thought it was unfortunate that she would retreat — it’s better that she takes a risk.
Frances is blindsided by Robert’s engagement.
Sarah Jessica Parker: It’s stunning to Frances because Robert had initially been so opposed to separation, but I think it was a great surprise for her story. I’ve learned that this is not unusual: men who have been in long marriages and get divorced tend to partner up quickly. I think there is a particular type of man that likes to be in a relationships. That’s the truth of a lot of people’s lives — they find partners very quickly and create stability that is necessary for them.
Jenny Bicks (Showrunner): It was a lot fun to develop that story because we knew that the hardest thing for Robert would be to tell Frances — there are a lot of feelings still. It doesn’t mean they’re going to get back together, but there are lingering feelings and he doesn’t want to hurt her. We all understood it would be hard for him to tell her.