Goodbye friend, indeed. The final season premiere of Mr. Robot wastes no time establishing the stakes of the year, by killing one of creator Sam Esmail's single most important characters: Angela Moss Portia Doubleday, childhood friend of Elliot Alderson Rami Malek.
A mainstay since the pilot, Angela's death launches the final season into action, serving as the very first scene of the premiere. It continues Angela's final appearance in season three, in which she sits in the idyllic front yard of a lavish manor alongside "Evil Corp" head honcho Phillip Price Michael Cristofer. Price takes a page from Darth Vader's playbook by announcing himself as Angela's biological father; the news lands poorly, as a distraught Angela is too busy reeling from her role in a series of terrorist bombings that killed thousands of people across the United States.
The premiere continues their short-lived family reunion, as Angela declares her intent to challenge the villainous Whiterose BD Wong and take over her life's work: an enigmatic machine lurking beneath the surface of Washington Township, New Jersey, potentially capable of building an ernate universe of sorts. It turns out, Price is wearing a wire; Whiterose has heard everything, and has had two Dark Army agents on standby throughout the entire conversation. Price begs Angela to back down from her defiant plans, in order to evade what's otherwise an inevitable and immediate death. Angela, who has firsthand knowledge of Whiterose's plans knowledge still withheld from the audience, of course, refuses his plea.
"You're panicking," she tells her increasingly fearful father, echoing words he once said to her long ago. "Remove all emotion from this, and you'll do just fine."
With that, Angela takes a deep breath, turns from her father, and accepts her fate. "You should probably leave," she tells Price. He complies, walks away, as the Dark Army assassins stroll right up to Angela and place a bullet in her head.
Creator Sam Esmail sat down with The Hollywood Reporter to discuss the shocking death of Angela Moss and much more from the final season premiere, in a special edition of the Series Regular podcast. Hear the full conversation in the player, and continue reading for more of Esmail's thoughts on the episode.
According to Esmail, Angela's death wasn't necessarily always in the cards; in fact, it was a plan that came to the surface once he and his writers examined where they left the character in season three.
"With character deaths, a couple are pre-planned, but for most of them, we find our way," he tells THR. "It's what happened with Joanna Stephanie Corneliussen in season three. We start pitching out the storyline, and then we figure out the organic end to the characters. Does it start to get ridiculous if these characters continue living on if the threats and stakes on them are so high? With Angela's character, any sort of capitulation felt like a betrayal to who she was and what she represented in the first three seasons. Unless we pulled punches, there was no way Whiterose was going to let her continue living and going out in the wild to figure out the machine, with what Whiterose had divulged to her. We felt that if we were being honest, it was the only end to her character."
"Before we even talked about this as the final season," Esmail continues, "we knew we had to continue that scene from the third season finale [in which Price reveals he's Angela's father]. It was after that where we took a step back and said, 'Wow.' We were all shocked. We love this character. Opening on that was so heartbreaking. We were also pissed off at ourselves. We kept asking: 'Is there a way we can save her?' And we couldn't."
Not that he and his team didn't try, of course.
"You do this thing in the writers' room where you box yourself into a corner and say, 'Ah, we'll get out of it next season,'" he says. "We came up with ridiculous ways to get out of the situation. We tried to jump through some hoops. She went to Kansas at one point and went into hiding in the witness protection program. But we felt we were avoiding the inevitable. It also made Angela into a runner. Going into hiding felt like a betrayal of who she was. She always stood for her principles, even when she was in these precarious positions. She always stood for what she believed in.That's ultimately what drove us to begin the season with that scene, and to continue on with it. We also thought with Price, there was no way that with his relationship to Whiterose and how he's under her thumb, that there was any way for him to protect Angela anymore. We also didn't like the idea of Angela needing Price to protect her. It was a confluence of things that made us have to be honest with our characters and honest with our storytelling."
Courtesy of USA Network
According to Esmail, the final two episodes of Mr. Robotwill play out very faithfully to his original vision of the story as a feature film. But it was Angela's death scene that formed the spine of season four as the final Robotride: "We knew this was the way to open [the season] ... and then the question becomes, what happens after? That's when we decided to do the time jump to Christmas, and that's when we thought about this as the final season. Elliot has gone through so much. He's lost so many people. He's lost his whole entire hacker group. But to lose Angela? To lose the closest person he's ever known? There's no turning back for him after that point. He was going to strike back, hard. That's what accelerates the standoff between Elliot and Whiterose that we've been waiting for. It has to start now."
Beyond how it impacts characters in the Mr. Robotuniverse, there's the matter of how Angela's death impacts viewers in the Mr. Robotaudience: namely, it creates a tense reason for fans to root for the otherwise nefarious Whiterose's Washington Township project — whatever it may be — if it means bringing beloved characters like Angela back from the dead.
"Anytime you can get the audience to actually root for the villain's goal is really fascinating," says Esmail. "It's one of the reasons why Se7enis one of my favorite films. By the end of the film, the villain is asking [the hero] to kill him, and if that happens, he wins. Now you're rooting for him and against him at the same time. I always find putting the audience in that position really interesting and really engaging. You tend to want to lean in more. You're so conflicted that it makes you engage on multiple levels. Not just an emotional level, but an intellectual level. When you have the audience there, then you can start to play with expectations from episode to episode. That wasn't the driving force of the decision. It always came down to her character. But when we saw the benefits of all of that ... also in terms of withholding the information, maintaining the suspense and keeping it a mystery? It made complete sense."
Following Angela's death, the premiere leaps forward into the future, roughly two months, landing right in the thick of the Christmas season. Esmail credits the great British television tradition of holiday specials for the festive spirit covering the final season of Robot. For his part, Elliot doesn't have much time for the merry-merry of it all; he's running against a clock of his own, as he's signed on to help Whiterose ferry her precious project out of America and into the Congo —but once the project ships, Elliot's protection wears off, and he and everyone he loves the few who remain alive will be in the crosshairs of the Dark Army. The result: Rami Malek and Christian Slater's two sides of Elliot working more fiercely together than ever before.
"I sound like a broken record when I say this, but I really mean it: this story has been about following Elliot's emotional journey," says Esmail. "The dynamic between Mr. Robot and Elliot — the dissociative identity disorder that he has — we never wanted it to play as a gimmick. It's crucial to who he is and what his emotional journey is. Elliot and Mr. Robot are not two different people. They are one and the same. There is a piece of Elliot in Mr. Robot, and vice versa. There has to be. They're two minds of the same person. When we talked about how he's arcing across these four seasons, we knew we would get Elliot to a place where you got to see a bit of Mr. Robot in him —and now you also get to see the bit of Elliot in Mr. Robot."
"I always said that the key word for season three was 'disintegration,'" he continues. "This season is about integration. It's the coming together of these two guys. At first, Elliot was in the dark. In the second season, Elliot and Robot went to battle with each other. The third season, they were bothin the dark. Here, they're finally coming together. With that coming together, we're seeing an overlap not only in who they are and their personalities, but how they feel about the world. We start to see that anger that caused the split, that caused the DID in the beginning, come through Elliot, and not just through Mr. Robot."
In that spirit, Elliot and Robot actually overlap by exchanging certain responsibilities; for example, Slater's Robot provides voiceover throughout the season four premiere, taking on the narrator role that Malek's Elliot typically occupies.
"If Elliot's so hyper-focused —and we wanted him to be, because of what happened to Angela, and now because all bets are off and there's a time limit on his own life — he was going to shut us out," says Esmail. "So, who brings us in? It's a great way to switch up the dynamic, and to reflect honestly what's going on in Elliot emotionally. Robot now becomes the softy in this scenario. He's now trying to include us."
Courtesy of USA Network
Speaking of inclusion, the final Robotpremiere draws some family friends into the mix in the form of cameos both subtle and overt: composer Mac Quayle plays a keytar at Grand Central as Elliot coaches Jake Busey's Freddy through the station; Shamelessveteran and Esmail's spouse Emmy Rossum appears briefly to sing some Christmas carols; and even Esmail himself shows up as a shadow agent, injecting Elliot with a lethal dose of heroin that seemingly — emphasis on seemingly—kills the computer hacking hero.
"I remember thinking, what a critical line: 'Goodbye, friend,'" Esmail says about his episode-closing cameo, in which he subverts the drama's iconic "hello, friend" tagline. "It felt weird to give it to somebody I was going to just cast for that one scene. I always try to find a way to slip my cameo in every season, so this just felt right. But I have to tell you, when we were shooting it? I started to get very worried. I had two words to say! One line! I think I did 30 takes. Rami was directing me. I was terrible. I'm not ashamed to admit it. I blinked a lot, which apparently is a big no no when it comes to acting. All of this, I learned from Rami. Rami Malek, by the way? Great filmmaker. Great director. He gave me great notes, and he held my hand through it."
As Mr. Robotbarrels forward into its twelve remaining hours, there may be someone holding Elliot's hand for the next little while: Phillip Price, Angela's biological father, who shows up at the end of the premiere to restore Elliot back to heh. Expect much more from this unlikely duo or is it trio, with Robot in the mix? as Esmail brings his thriller to a close.
"The episode opens with Price being forced to let his daughter get killed," he says. "Here we are at the end, and he's rescuing Elliot, his daughter's best friend. What I want to leave you with is this: 'Here we go. The troops are banding together.' I don't want to spoil too much, but hopefully you'll enjoy how they go after Whiterose."
Showrunner Angela Kang's pulse-pounding "Lines We Cross" offers some insight into Michonne's eventual departure from the world of the dead — and from a certain viewpoint, the outlook isn't good.
[This story contains spoilers for the season ten premiere of AMC's The Walking Dead, "Lines We Cross."]
Just as Andrew Lincoln's exit loomed large over the first few episodes of The Walking Dead season nine, so too does the specter of Danai Gurira's departure hang heavy over season ten.
As yet, there's no official word on how Gurira's sword-swinging Michonne will step away from active Walking Dead duty. Will she leave Alexandria on a quest to find Rick, or will she go down swinging like so many of the apocalypse's other casualties? Even without any concrete answers, showrunner Angela Kang's season ten premiere, "Lines We Cross," at least offers some set-up for Michonne's exit from the story — and from my vantage point, the forecast is not as sunny as Rick's airborne med-evac.
The premiere focuses on members of the Alexandria Safe-Zone engaging in military training at Oceanside, battling a particularly gnarly pack of walkers. Michonne is a force within the exercise, repeatedly shouting at her friends and neighbors to remember their training, and making sure to slice through her own share of rotting dead in the fight. She eventually joins Aaron Ross Marquand on a quick scouting trip, once it appears the Whisperers have returned. The two engage in a heated conversation — on a bridge of all places, not unlike the last known whereabouts of one Rick Grimes.
"Nice never got me anywhere, but smart did," Michonne snaps at Aaron, when he remarks about not wanting to play "nice" with the Whisperers. "They have a nuclear weapon, and we don't. It's not about being nice, or good, or anything —but keeping our people alive and not having them die over nothing."
Later, Michonne returns to Oceanside, and overhears a conversation between her children Judith Cailey Fleming and RJ Antony Azor. Judith regales her younger brother with the story of Rick's "death," also known as "the brave man." She explains: "People like the brave man are never really gone. They live inside our hearts and make us brave, too." It's not a good enough explanation for RJ, who wants to understand why "the brave man" died. Michonne tells him: "There are some people you love so much that you would do anything for them, just like I would do anything for you, and for Judith ... and your dad."
Processing Michonne's scenes through the prism of Danai Gurira's inevitable exit offers up a couple of reads of these scenes. One involves the reminders of Rick setting the stage for Michonne to some day learn the truth: he's alive, and she has to "do anything" in order to go out into the world and save him. Perhaps the premiere's fallen Russian satellite is somehow linked to the community where Rick will find himself in his next feature film appearance, wherever that may be — and maybe Michonne allowing Eugene Josh McDermitt five minutes to salvage satellite parts will end up leading her back to her husband, somehow.
That's the rosy outlook. And hey, let's root for it! But there's a grim outlook to consider as well: Michonne is not going to survive season ten, and the premiere has put the pieces in place for such an ending. Speaking about it further requires dipping into spoilers from Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard's Walking Dead comic books; proceed with caution.
Courtesy of AMC
First of all, let's start here: Michonne does not die in the comics. She's a key player in the series finale, helping an adult Carl Grimes out of a legal jam. Of course, Carl is very much dead in the TV version of events, one of the many instances of how death in the comics differs from death on the show, so Michonne's comic book survival does not mean anything for her live-action counterpart.
In the comics, Rick and Michonne are not an item. Instead, Rick eventually embarks on a relationship with Andrea, long since deceased in the television series. Andrea eventually dies during the Whisperer War, thanks to her role in fighting against the Whisperers' "nuclear weapon" of a walker herd. She succeeds in saving the rest of Alexandria, but not without incurring a fatal walker bite. Andrea dies in bed with Rick at her side, and eventually rises from the grave as a walker, forcing her husband to put her down.
Is it possible that Michonne is going to take on Andrea's fate from the comics? The pieces are in place: she mentions the Whisperers' "nuclear weapon" in the season premiere, while talking on a bridge that calls to mind Rick's final stand, mere moments before telling her children that she would do anything for them, and all after Judith talks about how "people like the brave man are never really gone." Sounds like a powerful way to map Andrea's comic book ending onto Michonne's television ending.
Incorporating some behind-the-scenes details about a different character entirely: Lauren Cohan is about to return to The Walking Dead as Maggie Greene. In season nine, it was established that Michonne and Maggie had some sort of falling out, before Maggie fled the Hilltop alongside Jayne Atkinson's Georgie. Is it possible Maggie's upcoming return has something to do with Michonne — attending her estranged friend's funeral, perhaps? Food for thought.
Turning to some comments from the folks in the know, here's what showrunner Angela Kang told The Hollywood Reporter about constructing Gurira's exit, during a recent appearance on the Series Regular podcast: "For people who are fans of Michonne, I really hope that [they feel we gave] her a worthy exit. That's certainly been heavy on my mind ever since I knew that this would be her last season. We kind of knew for a bit it was coming. For people who follow any of the entertainment news, they might know that she has had her own show as a writer/showrunner picked up, which is amazing. And she's an incredible writer. So I'm very excited for her to kind of open that chapter of her life in addition to all of her acting work. But we went at it with the same kind of seriousness that we treated Andy's exit last year. Her character has been so memorable. So I just hope we didn't screw it up. I never know until it's out there. But we know that we're just excited about the work that Danai did. I just think she's a powerhouse and a force of nature. The work she does on screen is beautiful, really moving and powerful throughout."
Speaking at PaleyFest during a panel moderated by yours truly, Gurira noted she's already finished her time on Walking Dead; there are still a few weeks remaining in production on season ten.
"It was a beautiful goodbye," she said. "We were able to deeply collaborate right through to the end. The last aspects of the story I got to tell with Angela and her team... I was really deeply satisfied with it. It allowed her to be herself to the end, but also go through a lot of things she had never been through. That's the really cool thing these guys do and will continue to do with all of these great characters: they get to be themselves, and they get to go through things where you're challenged every year and transformed every season."
For anyone wanting to get into the granular details of the word choices, perhaps Gurira's talk of Michonne's "transformation" is literal — that she ends up as a walker, not unlike Andrea in the comics. It's certainly a tragic thought to consider, given Rick's continued survival somewhere out in the Walking Dead universe — but it's also a beautiful story as told in the pages of Kirkman and Adlard's comic books, albeit centering on a different character. Given the current quality level of The Walking Dead and the players involved, there is little doubt that Gurira, Kang and their collaborators could render an equally moving story — one that leaves both the characters and viewers alike with the same message as Judith's story about her father: "People like the brave man are never really gone. They live inside our hearts and make us brave, too."
Warning: The Walking Dead spoilers will be found below.
A great deal has happened in The Walking Dead universe since the end of season nine of the series. The most significant thing, however, is that Robert Kirkman’s source material came to a surprising end back in July. That means that the parent series only has two to three more seasons of runway from the source material before it has to work exclusively from storylines original to the television series.
During the tenth season premiere, however, The Walking Dead skipped ahead a little and quietly paid homage to the end of Robert Kirkman’s series in a cute but otherwise innocuous scene in the premiere. During a training exercise at Oceanside, Michonne returns to find her daughter Judith telling her son RJ a story about Rick Grimes. “The brave man walked all by himself to the bridge,” Judith - sitting in a rocking chair - says to RJ, recounting the story of Rick Grimes’ exit from the series. “… so he blew up the bridge and all the walkers fell into the water. The end!”
It’s subtle, but it’s a clear nod to the final pages of The Walking Dead comic, which sees an older Carl Grimes the brother of Judith tell his own daughter, Andrea, a story about his father, Rick Grimes, and all the trials he endured. Carl, likewise, is sitting in a rocking chair while recounting the story of Rick Grimes to his daughter. It’s a a cute but meaningful homage to Kirkman and his comics, and since the television series obviously will not end the same way in part, because it could run for several more years, writer Angela Kang worked the nod into the tenth season premiere.
Meanwhile, the title credits also contain an homage to Rick Grimes now - a glimpse of the scene in which he exited the series.
Elsewhere, in a conversation between Aaron and Michonne, Kang may have also subtly hinted at a future storyline involving The Commonwealth, a successful civilization of about 50,000 people and likely one of the three civilizations represented by the CRM symbol that Alexandrians will likely encounter at the end of this season or early next season.
“Michonne, are we the good guys?” Aaron asks while the two are on horseback searching for signs of The Whisperers. “I think about it a lot. If we’re the villains of someone else’s story. A threat to their survival. So dangerous they threaten to wipe us out. Makes you wonder sometimes.”
“I don’t give a sh*t about The Whisperers or where they stand,” Michonne responds.
“I’m not just talking about The Whisperers,” Aaron says
In some ways, that is exactly what the Alexandrians become to the citizens of The Commonwealth in Kirkman’s comics - the villains. The Commonwealth lives in a society that has managed to survive peacefully for years in the zombie apocalypse, but everything goes to hell when - in the comics, anyway - Rick and Michonne show up. In many ways, they become the enemies, and to the leader of The Commonwealth and her son, Rick is such a “threat to their survival,” that they end up killing him in the penultimate issue of Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comics.
It’s likely the first of many nods toward The Commonwealth this season. Showrunner Angela Kang says that, while that storyline is further down the line, the series will begin to seed it in this year. It may also be where Maggie resides, and we should find out for sure in the 11th season, when Lauren Cohan returns to the show as a series regular.
From where we last left off in Star Wars Resistance, the Colossus is sailing into the cosmos. Kazuda Xiono Christopher Sean witnessed the Starkiller base’s annihilation of his homeworld, Hosnian Prime, and is unsure if his family survived the attack. Disgruntled by Kaz’s and Jared Yeager’s Scott Lawrence deceptions, Kaz’s fellow mechanic, Tam Ryvora Suzie McGrath has made the choice to jump aboard the First Order shuttle with the conniving Agent Tierny Sumalee Montano, the former naïve to the First Order atrocities. Oh, and pirates are hanging around the Colossus after striking an alliance with Captain Doza, but they’re not in the spotlight this episode.
In the season two premiere, “Into the Unknown,” the First Order is displeased with the Colossus’s escape into hyperspace. Captain Phasma Gwendoline Christie, reprising her live-action role orders Commander Pyre to not let the valuable refueling station fall into the Resistance hands. The Colossus makes it somewhere close to D’Qar, the Resistance base. Of course, the Colossus hasn’t sailed the cosmos for a while so breakdowns and gravity malfunctions inevitably occur. Kaz, Torra Doza Myrna Velasco, and Neeku have to fix the gravity generator.
Where is the Resistance?
Kaz and the Colossus attempted to contact the Resistance on D’Qar but the Colossus has stopped at an undetermined coordinate, near the Resistance base. But no answer. As the events of Resistance drift toward The Last Jedi timeline, fans know that the base may have been evacuated. Time will tell if the Colossus would run into any of the Resistance members or if the Resistance would even contact them.
That Durn First Order Droid is Still Around
Yup, that little First Order BB-series astromech droid that Kaz kicked down the elevator shaft? It survived and remains hidden in the Colossus. It tries to send data to the Empire. Luckily, Kaz and friends manages to stop the fellow and send it out the airlock.
Tam Bears the First Order Helmet
The newly inducted cadet Tam has become a number, DT533, for the First Order. Wracked by Kaz and Yeager’s keeping secret and her own confusion about the nobility of the First Order, Tam has hopped onto the First Order shuttle. She as no problem wearing the First Order helmet, believing herself to have achieved her dream of becoming a “real pilot.”
Kaz is coping with the loss of Tam, wracked with guilt. Despite Neeku warning about the risk of the message being intercepted, Kaz tries to contact Tam through their secure comlink. Considering how Yeager and Kaz’s spy secretiveness took a toll on Tam’s livelihood last season, Kaz isn’t wrong but he is playing a dangerous game reaching out to Tam in First Order territory.
In her new Cadet cabin, Tam is surprised to hear Kaz’s apology and pleas from her comlink. She flings the comlink away, too enraged to accept his apology. She drinks in a moment of hesitation before she planting on the First Order pilot helmet, becoming a faceless First Order drone.
Now that Star Wars Resistance has launched into an exciting new on-the-run narrative, “Into the Unknown” sets the stakes for the short and the long-term, while unraveling the psychological blowback of the Colossus’s launch and Tam’s deflection. There are sure to be large prices to pay, such as Tam adopting the First Order mantle and Kaz’s misguided choice to reach out to Tam, which could jeopardize the Colossus.
Other Tidbits Interestingly, Captain Kragan Gary Anthony Williams and his pirate gang are enjoying some drinks and gravity shenanigans at Aunt Z’s. The Colossus’s alliance with the pirates is going to be an interesting mix in the future. The Colossus citizens seem hunky-dory about being uprooted from Castilon. As long as they have Aunt Z’s alcohol to keep them occupied, they seem pretty complacent about their home and economy being flung into the stars—as of now. But what will happen once Aunt Z runs out of alcohol when the Colossus is cut away from trade and commerce.
Hours before the television premiere of Batwoman on The CW, a New York Comic Con Warner Bros. Television Panel crowd were wowed by a sneak peek of the episode. The spot introduced the new LGBTQ heroine Kate Kane Ruby Rose, a trained street fighter who dons a famed cowl in the absence of a particular Caped Crusader from Gotham City.
The crowd at the show's first-ever Comic Con panel gasped at a first-episode reveal that will propel all the action this season.
SPOILER ALERT — DO NOT READ PAST THIS LINE IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN TONIGHT'S EPISODE
The series involves Kate's return to the city when Sophie Moore Meagan Tandy—the high level security expert with the Crows protection agency that Kate has long been in love with—is kidnapped by Alice Rachel Skarsten, the frightening leader of Wonderland Gang that is wreaking havoc on Gotham.
Kate is also haunted by the disappearance of her beloved cousin, Bruce Wayne, and her memories of being the only survivor of a car accident that claimed her mother and sister—an accident where Batman failed to save the rest of the family. Clearly, Alice is obsessed with both Kate and Sophie, and seeks to upend the safety efforts of Kate's father, Jacob Kane Dougray Scott, who runs the Crows.
But it is when Kate begins to follow her own destiny and unravel the past that much more is revealed. SPOILERS AHEAD Kate's time in the bat cave reveals a number of clues to her own past—most notably beyond realizing that Bruce Wayne is, of course, Batman that Alice is actually her grown-up sister, Beth. That, and the knowledge that Sophie is now married to a man will create all kinds of issues for everybody involved from episode one.
The reveal brings Sophie and Kate closer together, though toward what end is anyone's guess. “You see Sophie trying to understand what's going on [with Kate] but it doesn't make sense,” says Tandy, who shared the panel with Skarsten. “Alice is trying to kill people and Sophie is trying to save people with the Crows. I feel that between Jacob and Kate, I'm in this family triangle.”
Alice will no doubt intrigue fans, and Skarsten teases that this season will reveal her backstory, including her formation of the Wonderland Gang that convened at a decrepit Gotham orphanage. “We've filmed several more episodes, and they do delve in,” Skarsten said. “It all gave me a great deal of compassion for Alice and why she is the way she is. This season you'll see her assembling her gang. Right now, it's just the minions of her gang—and their costumes are so creepy.”
As to Alice herself, playing the role has been a dynamic challenge for Skarsten, one-time costar of Imposters and Lost Girl. “I think when I first took on Alice, I thought a lot about what was unnerving. What's very unsettling with another human being is when a person is seemingly one thing, and then becomes another. I played around with that, and now I get to make a meal out of it, and sometimes I take it really far because Alice loves dramatics.”
Citing the once and perhaps future relationship between Kate and Sophie, Tandy said, “They split up abruptly, and there was no closure. Now that Kate is back, she'll be going through a roller coaster.
“The really cool thing is, we're gonna get all the answers about her,” Tandy continued. “There'll be more of a flashback from [Kate and Sophie first meeting in] military school. There were very real-life things driving [her decisions back then]. I don't want to reveal that, but you'll get that. It's really authentic, especially for black women.”
One thing fans in the audience were naturally concerned with was the inevitable crossover the series will have in the DCverse, due in December. “We're actually not allowed to say anything,” Skarsten began. “But we can say it will have major implications on Gotham City going forward, and there are so many amazing people being brought back. It'll be so much fun if you're a fan of any or all of it.”
Other things we know for sure: Fans will see some familiar villains; namely, Magpie and Hush. And the one guarantee for any good superhero series—as Tandy put it, “With Batwoman protecting the people of Gotham [alongside the Crows], there'll be some bumping of heads.”
One of the most acclaimed shows of the past decade gets a follow-up movie, a recent Emmy winner wraps up its season and a network-defining series begins its final season. That's all on tap, along with more than 15 other notable premieres and finales, for the week of Oct. 7.
Here is The Hollywood Reporter's rundown of some of the coming week's highlights. It would be next to impossible to watch everything, but let THR point the way to worthy options each week. All times are ET/PT unless noted.
The Big Show
Breaking Bad has a prequel series in Better Call Saul, but the series finale in 2013 seemed like a pretty definitive endpoint for the show. Or, perhaps not. Six years after it aired, the story picks back up again in El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie, premiering Friday on Netflix.
El Camino follows Aaron Paul's Jesse Pinkman after he flees the neo-Nazi compound where he was being held in the series' final episodes. Series creator Vince Gilligan, who wrote and directed the movie, has kept details close to the vest, but told THR that the image of Jesse escaping stuck with him: "To my mind, he went off to a happy ending. But as the years progressed, I thought, 'What did that ending — let's just call it an ending, neither happy, nor sad — what did it look like?'"
The movie will presumably answer that question; it also has a theatrical run in 68 cities and will air on AMC, the show's original home, at a future date to be determined.
Also on streaming ...
New: Hip-hop competition series Rhythm + Flow Wednesday, Netflix features judges Cardi B, Chance the Rapper and T.I. looking for the best aspiring rappers in the country; horror series The Birch premieres Friday on Facebook Watch.
Returning: Season two of Insatiable debuts Friday on Netflix.
On cable ...
Finales: Everyone's favorite hateable ultra-rich family bows out for the time being when Succession airs its second-season finale at 9 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13 on HBO. The finale of The Righteous Gemstones follows at 10:10 p.m., and the series finale for Ballers comes at 11.
New: Samurai Jack creator Genndy Tartakovsky brings Primal to Adult Swim at midnight Monday. The animated miniseries about a caveman at the dawn of evolution and a dinosaur on the brink of extinction will air for five consecutive nights.
Also new: Lifetime is the first to get a dramatized version of the college admissions scandal on the air with a movie titled, aptly enough, The College Admissions Scandal 8 p.m. Saturday. Nickelodeon debuts a new version of Are You Afraid of the Dark? at 7 p.m. Friday.
Returning: New seasons of Below Deck 9 p.m. Monday, Bravo, Temptation Island 10 p.m. Thursday, USA and Gold Rush 9 p.m. Friday, Discovery.
On broadcast ...
Final season: When Supernatural premiered in September 2005, The CW didn't exist yet the show debuted on forerunner The WB. The show kicks off its 15th and last season at 8 p.m. Thursday on The CW, countless demons and back-road miles from its pilot, when two brothers Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki set out to chase down an urban legend and find their missing dad.
New/returning: The bulk of The CW's lineup also debuts this week: All American and Black Lightning at 8 and 9 p.m. Monday, The Flash at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Riverdale and newcomer Nancy Drew at 8 and 9 p.m. Wednesday, Legacies following Supernatural at 9 Thursday, and Charmed and Dynasty at 8 and 9 p.m. Friday. PBS' Finding Your Roots also kicks off a new season at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
In case you missed it ...
It seems odd to think of a David E. Kelley show as being under the radar, but given the crush of premieres in recent weeks, Goliath might have gone unnoticed. The third season of the legal thriller starring Billy Bob Thornton — joined this time by Dennis Quaid, Amy Brenneman, Sherilyn Fenn and Griffin Dunne, among others — is streaming on Amazon.