Wynonna Earp: Alexandra Zarowny explains the show’s latest big twist

Talk about a Rev-elatory episode of Wynonna Earp. Not only did “Forever Mine Nevermind” prove to WayHaught fans that Waverly is still smarting because Nicole was holding onto the DNA results, but we learned a lot about Rosita.

After a hot tub smooch with Waves over champagne, the drug maker appeared to fall victim to a severely frostbitten Tucker Gardner. And then, there she was, cracking a bottle over the creepster’s head and unveiling herself as a Revenant. You know, the folks Wynonna is blasting back to hell one by one? The fact Waverly promised Rosita she’d keep that a secret from her big sister shows just how out of sorts Waverly is. Add to that a major doll-influenced argument between Doc and Wynonna and, well, we had to get episode writer Alexandra Zarowny on the phone to discuss it all.

Officially, congratulations on the Season 3 pickup. What does that mean for you? Are you back writing yet?
Alexandra Zarowny: We didn’t know we were going to get a Season 3 pickup, so we were waiting a little bit. Emily [Andras] is still finishing Season 2, so we did a teeny, teeny bit of development where we sat around and talked about what Season 3 might look like if we did get it. I think what we’re planning to do is reconnect in September.

When you’re kicking around Season 3 stories, how much, if anything, is made up of stories you couldn’t use in Season 2 or even the first season? Does that happen?
Maybe. There are definitely some bigger picture ideas that we had early on. It’s not that we couldn’t use them, it’s just that we knew that it didn’t fit into the mythology and wouldn’t fit until further down the line. When we’re initially starting and throwing everything out onto the table, there are some things that are really juicy and if you do it all at once it’s going to be a messy hodgepodge of story. That’s where you have to stretch them out along the timeline of the show as you go from season to season and decide where they’ll best work for the characters. And, in the evolution of the characters, particularly in the case of one character in Season 2, some things don’t work anymore.

I think you’re going to have to hand in your WayHaught Whisperer membership because you kept the couple apart, big-time.
No matter what kind of relationship two characters are in, in a romantic relationship you have to play to the authenticity of what it’s like for two people to be in a relationship. There are going to be bumps and scrapes along the way. If we didn’t put Nicole and Waverly through the wringer every once in awhile we would be playing a completely false partnership and relationship and we wouldn’t be paying service to our fans, and I think that’s very unfair.

I don’t want to watch a romantic comedy where the couple meet and go out on a first date and it goes so well they go out on a second date, and then it goes so amazingly that, six months later they’re engaged. It’s so beautiful, and then they get married. And then the credits roll and you’re like, ‘I’m sorry, what was that?’ That’s not a story. It’s not interesting. What makes it interesting to watch these characters is that they are beginning to open up to one another a little bit more and, as you do in any relationship, you have moments where you show a little bit of your darker side, the raw parts of your personality. And we’re doing that with all of the other characters on the show. And to not do that with Nicole and Waverly would be really odd and I hope the fans out there recognize what we’re doing as something that may have happened to them in their pasts.

I thought you did a very good job handling the Rosita revelation that she was a Revenant. You set it up with Rosita and Waverly sharing that kiss and possibly upsetting WayHaught fans. Then you temper the anger by revealing what Rosita really is. Well done.
That was such a juicy thing to come up with. Doc goes to her and writes on her hand, ‘I can give you protection.’ What that means, of course, is that he can protect her from Wynonna. That’s what he’s promising her in order to get her to cook for Dolls. And I think, initially, we unveiled Rosita’s Revenant-ness much earlier on in the season, like Episode 2. It just didn’t feel right, so we kept pushing it and pushing it. And when we got to this moment we thought, ‘We can’t just have her play the girl that Waverly—in a champagne-hot-tub-drunken-moment—kisses. There has to be something more to her and more to this story. And then, of course, it weaved into the Tucker storyline really well. I think we found the perfect place to reveal that. I’m glad that you liked it and thought it worked.

We had to be careful about how we killed her, that when she came back she didn’t have blood all over her. It had to be something that she would come back from fairly quickly.

Doc offered safety to Rosita from Wynonna. Waverly promised Rosita she would keep her secret from Wynonna. Will the secret come out?
I can’t tell you that!

It adds another layer. How do you work with Rosita—someone that you now care about—when she is perceived as the enemy?
Right. That’s such a delicious complication. One of the things that we really want to do—and what we wanted to do in particular this year because the Revenants haven’t been on-screen as much—is to remind people that they’re not the typical demon that just rises out of a pool of hellfire to engage you with all the pain and suffering in the world. These were people and are still people now. What we want to do, and will do over the next couple of episodes, is remind people that it’s not such an easy decision for Waverly to hold that secret. If Wynonna does find out, maybe it’s not such an easy thing to say, ‘You’re a Revenant … kill you.’

There was also a great little Easter egg in the episode: Wynonna Earp comic creator Beau Smith in the store and trading a look with Doc as they went by each other in the doorway.
Those two in real life … you might as well ship them. They are sooo in love. Calm down you two, you’re both married. [Laughs.]

Let’s discuss Doc giving Wynonna his ring, the last seal. He got down on one knee, which was very suggestive of a proposal.
We wanted to at least try having him do that. Tim and Mel are very honest with us as actors and we knew that if it didn’t feel right, they would give us a shot where he’s not on bended knee. We wanted to try it and see if it would work and I think it really did. That was one of the hardest scripts that I’ve had to write because it was just a two-hander conversation all episode between them. Thank god for Mel and Tim because I think they could read the phone book. I was joking with someone about that the other day that I’m going to pitch it for Season 3. They could literally read the phone book to each other because it would be delicious and entertaining and have all the feels in the world.

What can you say about Episode 10?
Oh my god! Don’t miss it! [Laughs.] If we all remember correctly, Mr. John Callaghan wrote Episode 5, which was a doozy. The end of every scene was like a frickin’ revelation. Let’s just say that he’s done it again.

Wynonna Earp airs Fridays at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on Space.

Images courtesy of Bell Media.

 

Greg David
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Greg David

Prior to becoming a television critic and owner of TV, Eh?, Greg David was a critic for TV Guide Canada, the country's most trusted source for TV news. He has interviewed television actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes folks from hundreds of television series from Canada, the U.S. and internationally. He is a podcaster, public speaker, weekly radio guest and educator, and past member of the Television Critics Association.
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3 thoughts on “Wynonna Earp: Alexandra Zarowny explains the show’s latest big twist”

  1. To me the reveal of Rosita as a Revenant was the high point of the night. I would think it actually would be somewhat comforting for Waverly. Just because she’s a Revenant doesn’t mean that Rosita is evil. She’s one e good guys, who comes out of the closet (so to speak) to save Waverly, someone she cares for, in spite of the possible consequences. An amazing twist and I love her urging Waverly to make up with Nicole.

  2. I loved the Rosita’s reveal and I hope for more scenes with her and Waverly and I agree, Mel and Tim can read the phonebook to each other and make it work.

  3. Maybe Waverly wont feel like being a revanant means she is evil now. If she even is a revanant. Her reveal was too flat for me to believe that she truely is half revenant.

    Its interesting how we can tell how an episode will be now based off who wrote it. Excited/nervous for 210, 205 was alot of story development.

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