PRODIGAL SON Post-Mortem: Keiko Agena Breaks Down Edrisa's Big Hour - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

PRODIGAL SON Post-Mortem: Keiko Agena Breaks Down Edrisa’s Big Hour

April 20, 2021 by  

Prodigal Son Killabustas spoilers

PRODIGAL SON: L-R: Keiko Agena, Aurora Perrineau, Frank Harts and Lou Diamond Phillips in the “Killabustas” episode of PRODIGAL SON airing Tuesday, April 20 (9:01-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2021 Fox Media LLC Cr: Phil Caruso/FOX

[Warning: This post contains spoilers for the Tuesday, April 20 episode of PRODIGAL SON.]

PRODIGAL SON’s Edrisa (Keiko Agena) found herself in a little over her head—at least at first—on the Tuesday, April 20 episode of the Fox drama.

At first, Edrisa was just horrified to realize she had help dub the killer the Vulture in her online vigilante group, the Killabustas. But then came the discovery that a member was killed.

The Malcolm (Tom Payne) and the team turned to other members of the group in the hopes they might be able to help find the killer…only for them to realize the killer had infiltrated the Killabustas.

“Aside from the things that I’ve got to film, dang, I really liked this episode” Agena gushes. “You’ve got four of these romantic couplings happening and just twisting and turning and progressing. I think it’s a powerhouse episode; I really like it.”

Here, she breaks down the big hour, as Edrisa saved the day…and maybe found a new kindred spirit?

Edrisa is no stranger to being out in the field, but this was a case she had deeply personal ties to. As a performer, what was your reaction to this script?
As a performer, it’s thrilling to get a script where we can peel back the layers of who this person is outside of a, perhaps, small sliver of her work life. Each thing I got to find out about her is such a joy.

Even before I saw the script, [co-creator] Sam [Sklaver] was telling me that we were going to meet up with this vigilante group online and that Edrisa is going to have a crush on and go on a date with one of them. I thought, “Yes, how lovely is that to play?”

And I think for Edrisa, it’s nice for her to have a group of people where she has a different personality. We only get to see her in a very specific light, because she’s so in love with Malcolm that she’s just a complete mess every time she’s around him—which is most of the time we see her. So, to see her in a different space, where she’s not just a mess all of the time, is kind of nice for her.

She and Blaze (Michael Luwoye) really hit it off. Will that continue beyond this episode?
I don’t know yet how that’s going to progress. I mean I would love for Michael to come back in season 3, because I think that Blaze is such a great character. And we mentioned him a little in this season, but we don’t see him again. But I hope that in season 3 we will.

Now that she is in a relationship with someone else, how is that changing her dynamic with Malcolm? Is she still enamored, or is she able to play it a bit cooler around him?
It’s a little mix of both. I think she is never not going to be a little bit in love with Malcolm Bright. I think she respects him so much and she loves what it is that he does. But I think that, for the better, her relationship with him is going to change over the course of time, which I think is good.

You’ve also really gotten to see Edrisa stand up for herself. Now this is the second time she has physically stood up for herself, which is a little bit unexpected, but lovely. In the last season, we saw her hit the killer with a medical tray. And in this episode, she stabbed someone. That has changed her, too: she has faced life-threatening situations, and has found a kind of strength in herself. And I think that has probably shifted how she sees herself a little bit.

Like you mentioned, we’ve seen her defend herself in the past, but stabbing someone feels like a different level of potential trauma. How much are we going to see her dealing with the fallout of her actions, even if she was in the right?
I think everything that happens to a character becomes part of their DNA and will always be there, under the surface, and how they see themselves. But whether it overtly gets mentioned next season or the seasons that that follow, it now becomes part of who she is. It’s something that she’s done, that she knows that she is now capable of.

Does she talk to anyone about it?
I think there’s a lot of repression going on in this group and the world. But certainly in this group, which is so fun. I think Sam and [co-creator] Chris [Fedak] really know how to write that. I mean they are creating such a pressure cooker within Malcolm that we know is going to explode. And I think that that’s true with a lot of the characters that they’re writing. And I think that Edrisa would be like that, as well. I think that if they ever did address it, they would let it build, so that it becomes something that has to be expressed.

To go back to Edrisa’s history, we learned a little bit about her past in this hour. What was the process of that reveal? Did you already know this, did you have input, etc?
What’s interesting is that we have actually had conversations [off-screen] about Edrisa’s parents. Those specifics haven’t necessarily been in this script that we’ve seen, but it’s certainly in my mind of how I approach what she’s talking about when she’s mentioning, you know, the voodoo doll and cadaver.

For Edrisa, she covers a lot, even in that scene. And so, I don’t know if we’ll ever talk about them again or see them, but what she’s gone through in her life influences how she reacts to Malcolm, what she thinks about Malcolm, what she thinks about her work. It’s all part of it.

The Killabustas felt like a safe space for Edrisa. Now that she knows they can be infiltrated—and her work can be used against her—how is she handling the loss of that sanctuary?
What I think is fun about Edrisa is that she’s never completely safe. She’s always riding this line…she wants so much to be, when she’s at major crimes, accepted and acknowledged and seen. And then she does sometimes, and then she kind of falls completely on her face.

What’s fun about a situation like the Killabustas is that same type of thing: of almost the lingering memory of some place that you felt so safe and so confident. And yet, there’s a darkness to it now. And that back and forth of wanting it to be that safe space, but knowing that it isn’t is a fun idea to play with. If we ever got to see that group again, what a wonderful thing to not be one or the other—to keep flipping back and forth.

Looking ahead, what excites you about what’s to come for Edrisa?
Like we were talking about, just right now in this conversation, she is changing. She’s not the same person she was in the pilot episode. Being around Malcolm is inspiring to her and it’s pushing her. She’s never met anybody like that before. And the fact that she is stepping outside of what she thought was her comfort zone, bashing people over the head, stabbing people, being more out there than she’s ever let herself be, is going to have an effect on her. I think that that would be great to continue to unfold and see how far can you go with that.

The showrunners teased the finale was a bit explosive. What can you tease about the hour?
It’s one of those things when you read that script, you go, “No. No, no. What?!” And then you go back a couple pages, and you go, “Wait, wait, wait, wait. No.” It’s that kind of feeling, it’s that kind of pit of your stomach, like, “What, wait a minute, what are we doing here?” That’s what it felt like to to read those pages.

PRODIGAL SON, Tuesdays, 9/8c, Fox


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