Perry Mattfeld On In the Dark's Ineffability, Season Two's Darkness, and the REAL Love Story!

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If you haven't caught up with In the Dark, run to your nearest device and get to bingeing.

It's one of the most unusual series on The CW, and it's no wonder the underrated gem takes off and generates excitement and chatter when it hits Netflix.

After a gripping first season, In the Dark Season 2 took us on a hell of a ride going in some of the most unexpected directions and keeping us glued to our seats and the screen.

Beautiful Murphy - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 6

We were fortunate to catch up with the warm, personable, and truly delightful star of the series, Perry Mattfeld, to chat about the exciting sophomore season and what we can expect when the show returns.

Warning, there are MAJOR spoilers for the entire second season below. If you haven't completed the series, I highly recommend you go do that first, then double back for all the details.

TVF: Congratulations. You guys have a third season coming!

Yeah, T.G! It's a really hard time to be an actor right now.

I can only imagine with everything shutting down and all. How's that working for you guys?

We really lucked out. We wrapped I want to say the last week of January? Then I went straight from Toronto to Miami to go to the Super Bowl. And now that I think about it, there I was at the Super Bowl, surrounded by hundreds of thousands of people.

And no one had any idea. Little did I know, that was the last time I'd ever be ... you know? It's crazy; we got lucky. Then I came home, and I started a project, and then about four days later, that got shut down. Now here we are.

Showing Pretzel Love - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 2

Speaking of crazy, I'm dying to know what it was like for you reading the script for the second season? Because there was such a tonal shift. It feels much darker than it was the first season.

Yeah, I mean definitely. I feel like after season one, I think everyone -- the creative team, the cast, the producers --everyone was reassured maybe is the right word after the show did so well on Netflix the first season.

Because I've said it before, it's such a unique show. I didn't even know how to describe it. When people would ask, "what's this show you're working on about?"

I was like, "uh, it's this woman, um, blind, dog, guns." I didn't, you know, it's funny, but it's not, but it's not a murder mystery, but I had no idea.

Facing Dean - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 1

Right? [laughs]

And so after the show found its audience -- and it's this quirky, Indie type show on The CW, and so that's even unfamiliar because The CW doesn't have many shows like that.

So after it found an audience, that was confirmation that we had done something right -- that there is an audience for such a unique show and that people loved it. Going into season two, everyone had a lot of confidence. Like, "OK, we've got something, let's really go with it."

Yeah, I agree. It's a difficult show to [describe], it slips in and out of so many different genres that you can't define it, and I do think that's what makes it so great.

Yeah, we didn't know exactly what we were doing. This was a passion project for Mark Pedowitz, an experiment.

Then it was so good that The CW said, "Alright, go ahead. Make your show." That was just the biggest endorsement for everyone for season two -- to just go that much deeper.

Worn Out - Tall - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 3

This season, a lot of the relationships are tested. I always say that at the heart of the series, I think the real love story is the friendship between Murphy and Jess.

Wow, Jasmine! You are so spot on. No one ever gets that!

Ha! Sometimes, I gravitate more towards the non-romantic bonds. I love theirs, especially since there are few female friendships and dynamics that are really at the center of shows.

Can you talk a bit about their friendship and their journey this season? It got rough for you guys.

It's impressive that you picked up on that! I know Corinne -- she's our showrunner creator -- she's brilliant and so intentional with the relationship that she has created on the show.

But she also said she wanted Murphy to make decisions, especially in season one, because of nonromantic relationships. She wanted her to make decisions because of a woman not because of a guy.

A Drug Mission - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 8

You know, yes, there's an entire love story between two friends. In season two, Corrine completely ripped them apart and tore that bridge between them down to see how strong that friendship was.

I think there's like two or three episodes in season two when Murphy and Jess aren't speaking to each other. And one of my favorite scenes in season two is when Murphy comes back to the apartment, and Jess is packing up to leave.

Murphy is feeling bad, and she suggested that she didn't want Jess to leave, but if anyone needed to go, it should be her, and Jess agrees. It's kind of like, "I was kidding, but OK."


And then they don't speak. And Jess is fed up. Another one of my favorite scenes is when they're standing out in the rain, and Jess admits to enabling Murphy and putting them in this kind of loop of codependency.

Betrayals Run Deep - Tall - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 13

Yes. I love that scene!

And, excuse my language, it's such a f***d up relationship that they have, but it's some sort of love that keeps them together, that there's something wrong.

They're in a bad situation, and then without speaking for the next couple episodes, Jess still comes back to save Murphy because she'd never let anything happen to her.

You and Brooke were fantastic this season. I loved watching the turning point between you two.

You're right; it's a non-romantic relationship, but those can also be the relationships worth killing for. Literally!

Jess Saves Murphy  - In The Dark

Another interesting relationship was Murphy and Nia. She treated Murphy as a potential protege. What do you think Nia saw in Murphy that made her trust her so much, and how did Murphy feel about that?

I've even said it too, Dean and Murphy are similar. Nia and Murphy are similar. They are loyal to a fault.

Dean is so loyal to his daughter, that he will make the worst decisions. Murphy's so loyal to Tyson, and to Jess, and Max that she will hurt other people to protect the people that she loves.

I think Nia saw that fierceness and passion for protecting the people that she loves and that can be a good thing, and it can also be extremely dangerous. I do love that there's also a very intense kind of female par and back and forth between Nia and Murphy.

Nia is the first woman who intimidates Murphy. She's not intimidated easily, but I think Nia definitely scares her.

Nia's Pet Project  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 7

It's a strong series with central female characters. All of the women and the relationships, they're complex and flawed. But of course, there's the romance stuff too.

Oh, you gotta give the fans what they want! [laughs] You gotta give the fans what they want.

You guys, yeah, you definitely give the fans what they want. [laughs]

A Surprise Visit - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 2

Everyone, loves, loves, LOVES Max and Max and Murphy. And of course, that got complicated because you had a love triangle with Max and Josh, too. Amid all of the stuff Murphy had going on, she managed to fit that in too.

What is it about Max that Murphy just can't shake? It's like they're kind of addicted to each other.

I think Murphy is definitely an adrenaline junkie. We got a chance to showcase that during the first season in the first few episodes. It was revealed that she fulfills herself with any and every external stimulus, whether it's alcohol, or random hookups, or cigarettes -- anything to displace her from her reality.

And I think Max, in a way, is a part of that. They've never had a normal relationship.

Max Has it Bad - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 13

They never had a chance.

No, they've never had a cookie-cutter, normal relationship, and I don't think Murphy feels she deserves that. I don't think Murphy believes she can ever have that.

I think Josh was a glimmer of that, "oh, is this what it means to be with a nice guy?" Someone who's not involved with prison, who's not involved with drugs as well, but there is something about Max that is an additional part stimulus.

It's an additional part of that adrenaline rush. They have a very on and off toxic kind of relationship, but yet they care about each other so much. You hear about that all the time how people become addicted to relationships like that. And I think Josh is what she thinks she should want, but I'm not even sure if those feelings are genuine.

Platonic Friends - Tall - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 6

I was wondering about that too. Was she only taking advantage of his position? Did she really think they could have a relationship when she's hiding that part of herself?

Yep, and I think there's this really interesting kind of perspective. What do you become obsessed with? Is it your reality or the idea of what your reality could be?

I think even for Josh -- he genuinely started to care for Murphy, but is it just because he feels some comfort in knowing that she's like him? How real are these feelings? And then the season just ended, so we don't really know. [laughs]

It was so messed up what she did to him in the end, turning off the lights. 

It was so bad, but it was also so funny. I felt horrible for laughing at it.

Of course, then there was that dramatic breakup with Max, so we'll see.

Unsuspecting - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 5

Murphy's relationship with Dean was toxic. Did you know early on that it would be his final season? What were your thoughts on closing that chapter with Dean?

I did not know, and when I found out, I was devastated. Not only do I think Rich [Sommer] is so talented, but I also felt like he brought a lot of sophistication and clout to our show.

He has such a resume, and he's such a respected actor, so having him, in my opinion, added such a sense of legitimacy to the show, and we've just become so close. I adore him.

But Corrine, again, I trust every one of her decisions. She even said you can only have a villain live for so long. You can only have a villain get away with so much, and you can only have a villain isolate himself so much, and she was right.

People hated -- they despised him and all they wanted was for him to get what he deserved, but then when it happened it was still --

Dean Spies - Tall - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 5

Sad and tragic.

And that's exactly what you want. There's a sweet spot where you don't want to override that. It goes too long, and you're like, " Kill him already," but then you also don't want to be too soon.

She found that sweet spot. There was a glimmer at the end where you didn't want him to hurt himself, and Murphy did not want him to hurt himself.

Both Dean and Murphy, even when they were at odds with each other, they were prioritizing Chloe's protection. I thought that was interesting.

Chloe Lives It Up - Tall - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 6

Do you think we will see that relationship in season three, with Murphy and Chloe? I don't know what an opening for that looks like.

I don't either. I don't know.

I think as hard as Murphy is on the outside, the relationship with Chloe is a really important part of being able to showcase that soft side of Murphy and giving the audience a part of Murphy to root for and to love and care about.

I think there could be an opportunity to show how Chloe fully navigates on her own and what that's like for a blind person. We have multiple writers who are blind, and our writers' room is always coming up with creative ways to incorporate what life looks like living with blindness and how you might have to navigate without resources.

Talking to Chloe  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 8

Like we were saying that was a heck of a cliffhanger that you guys worked on, and I honest to goodness, I said it at the end of my review, I have no idea whatsoever where you guys will go in season three. I don't know what to expect!

The one good thing that has come out of quarantine is we have like seven scripts already for season three.

Really? Do you have any teasers or anything?

Uhh, I will give the people relief that Max is not gone. But anything can happen.

There's that scene in the end where they feel like they have the 40 grand from Josiah. They're all kind of thinking they'll just go back to work, and I remember Morgan, who plays Felix, I can't get through one scene without laughing he's so funny.

Kindred Spirits - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 9

I can believe that!

He is so funny in real life, so Morgan and Felix the character have completely blurred for me, so I have lost complete control of being able to talk. I can't even take him seriously because he's so funny. Anyway, he had improvised in that last scene.

Felix and Max didn't know each other, and now they just spent 48 hours together burying bodies. He says something like, "Yeah, I'll just get your number from Murphy." The most casual bit, and you realize that they had never really met before.

[Laughs] It was one of my favorite little moments too.

Protecting Pretzel - Tall - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 12

The first time they were interacting, and it's burying bodies. They're eternally bonded by illicit activities, and now they're friends!

There's this normalcy amid chaos, and we leave on that, and then we also had the same thing that happens in season one. We get some closure, and then it's not really the end.

In season two, we get some closure," Hey get your number from Murphy and we can grab a sandwich sometime," and they'll all go back to work and then --

Now, they're probably going to be on the run together or something.

Yeah, and it's not done.

Rummaging Through Belongings - Tall  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 2

It was a great season. It had a different tone from the first one. It was unpredictable and exciting.

Thank you. I do feel like every episode builds on itself. I think being able to watch the episodes on Netflix is extremely impactful because of the build-up, because of the suspense.

These episodes-- there isn't much time that passes between each episode. So when you're working with The CW, seven days for you and your life have passed, but within the In the Dark world, it's just 20 minutes later. It's hard to kind of, you know, you feel distant, and I'm so happy that people are watching on Netflix in a day.

You're living in it, and getting stuck in it, and just consumed by it.

Murphy Makes A Choice  - In The Dark Season 2 Episode 12

Right! It is a totally different vibe. And it works so well as a binge, so it doesn't surprise me that so many people wait until it hits Netflix. It does change the way you respond to the entire series. It's a different experience, but I do think it heightens it too.

I think so too.

Thank you for supporting the show, and finding it, and writing about it. And for taking the time to talk to me. I appreciate you and thank you.

I appreciate you guys. You've been doing an amazing job with this series, and I cannot wait to see what else you have for us. I think it's one of the most underrated gems out there, and I hope people continue to find it and support it and you all.

I hope so too! Thank you.


You can binge the entire series on Netflix, or you can watch In the Dark online here via TV Fanatic.

Also, check out full In the Dark reviews of the entire second season.

Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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