Bellevue: Jane Maggs and Adrienne Mitchell Talk “How Do I Remember”

CBC
CBC

*** Warning: This article contains major spoilers for the Bellevue episode “How Do I Remember” ***

Throughout the past four episodes, Bellevue has seen Annie (Anna Paquin) maintain whatever is left of her sanity, but in this week’s episode, “How Do I Remember” we learned that she is actually talking to someone on the other end of the camera and not crazy. A drug investigation also made its way into Bellevue and Eddie (Allen Leech) became the prime suspect. Jesse’s emotional funeral service was held and Daisy (Madison Ferguson) began to deal with everything going on around her. The series not only maintained its high energy but picked up rapid speed as the season continues towards the season finish. Only three more episodes remain and are sure to be full of surprsies!

The TV Junkies caught up with creators Jane Maggs and Adrienne Mitchel, the brilliant minds behind the gripping emotional thriller and talked Annie’s relationship with the man behind the camera, Daisy’s future on the series, and Eddie and Annie’s relationship. “How Do I Remember” was written by Jane Maggs and Thomas Pound and directed by Kim Nguyen.

 

The TV Junkies: Annie keeps talking to this camera that she installed. Is she actually going crazy or is there really someone speaking to her on the other side? 

Jane Maggs: I think what we’re playing with is, yes, there definitely is a voice there and it’s a balance between her sort of having a plan. She understands that in order to further this relationship, this person needs to feel like they have a relationship and that she trusts him. So, part of it is playing that side of things and part of it is the moments that I think she does kind of get lost in the relationship and in the nostalgia of this person from her childhood being back. So it’s both her being in control and sometimes her slipping into the nostalgia of it.

CBC
CBC

TTVJ: Her trusting him, that was one thing I really jumped on board with. We don’t even know him, we just know this voice and oddly enough I trust him. I feel like he’s telling the truth. How did you convey that through the writing? Did you have discussions about this in the writers’ room on how he’d sound or how he would interact with Annie?

Adrienne Mitchell: It’s so interesting because initially we didn’t know if we were going to be showing him or not. Episode 5 is the first time that we see that there is someone on the other end of that phone and that that someone exists. He’s hooded and we see pieces of his eyes and nose. In casting this particular actor, I think that a lot of that sense of trust in the writing and also in the choice of actor who was just our vision for this. It was very difficult to cast because we didn’t want to cast somebody who was overly menacing in sort of a two-dimensional way. We wanted somebody who felt pained, vulnerable, and formidable, so there was still an edginess and not knowing what to expect factor. This actor was able to convey that and convey Jane’s beautiful writing that way and sell it. That’s why we can tap into trusting him.

JM: He really humanizes it in a way that is really challenging for that role. I think a lot of it is his performance because I think the writing of it is challenging because we didn’t want it to be like a Hannibal Lecter sort of scenario. We wanted it to be human but still create that sense of unease. But also that vulnerable and trusting thing that you picked up on, which is great that you did because I would say that that’s to our actor’s credit.

TTVJ: During their conversation he admits that the murders are connected, but were committed by different people. Will that affect how Annie approaches the case?

JM: I think it does in that she starts to think more circular and not linear. I don’t think she ever really thought that it was the same killer, but she just thought that there was some sort of connection.

AM: I think that’s what it is. In this episode, we’re sort of going through this journey of her trying to understand who this person is, what is his connection to the two cases, and what happens is there is a moment where she feels that he is absolutely bullshitting her. That he’s just wanting to be close to her given their past and given that he did reach out to her when she was very young — and then at the end realizes that he does have some information. I think he doesn’t read in a straightforward manner. From her perspective it’s like he really doesn’t feel like it had anything to do with Jesse’s death, but at the same time, he knows a connection between Jesse and Sandy’s death. So what does he know? Does he know something about the killers? What does he know? It’s not straight forward and there’s something that she can’t get a handle on. What also is happening is that she’s got this emotional connection with him and instinctively and intuitively she feels she can’t quite see this person in a two-dimensional way where he’s someone who is a straightforward killer or murderer.

CBC
CBC

TTVJ: One of the things I love about this show is that it’s not just about the murder. It also focuses on Annie and her relationship with Eddie and with Daisy. In this episode, we see Eddie involved in some of these shady things and that kind of changes Annie’s perspective of him. How will we see them moving forward from this?

JM: I think their relationship has quite a few more twists and turns before we get to the end. I think that’s just the nature of their complicated relationship up against the incredibly stressful situation they are both in. We’ll see more of them pulled together and pushed apart and it all sort of intertwines with the real drama of the series. I’m as invested in them as I am in the murder, personally.

AM: The interesting thing about our show is that we really do try to play those character dynamics in a fulsome way, and they are huge part of the vibrations of the series. It is not remotely a straightforward investigational piece. We love how deliciously dizzying that can be and how messy that can be, and how the messiness of the relationship affects the case and the case affects the messiness of the relationship, and how all of those things are beautifully coinciding and clashing with each other. It’s our kind of Bellevue-esque authenticity that we so try to do. Jane’s voice as a writer is very much that.

TTVJ: One of the things that I have really loved this season, but specifically in this episode, is Victoria Sanchez’s portrayal of Maggie. What was it like casting her? Did you know right off the bat she was your Maggie?

AM: She just blew us out of the water! There was nobody that even came close to her! Her performance was as if she was channeling this character. There wasn’t one false note and that doesn’t happen a lot. She was just sort of destined to play this role.

JM: I think so for sure. Also, it’s a hard role because not only is it emotional, but you can really overplay that role — that down on your luck role. She’s beautifully vulnerable, but she’s got a real tough side and there was something about Victoria that just naturally came by that. She just blew everyone away.

AM: There was just this kind of realism in her, she was living this and there was not a false note in her performance at all. She is just an amazing actress.

CBC
CBC

TTVJ: One scene I thought that really stood out was after Jesse’s funeral when Daisy and Jesse’s friends run around in the woods shouting. What made you want to write that into the episode and add in a scene like that after such a dark and morbid service?

JM: I think it’s the emotion that personally I love, which is that it comes out of a really messed up scenario, but it’s like kids being so honest and hopeful in a way that only kids can be and so there is something really beautiful and small town-ish about it. It felt right in that moment, it felt like we needed to feel some hope, and that there were people who have been changed and affected by the funeral and by this kid who was killed. It just felt right.

AM: This is something that Jane and team really loved so much. I just totally agree with what Jane just said. It’s this beautiful thing that we were working with where these kids were involved in trying to change Jesse, and then through this experience and through the truth coming out something is changing in them. They are actually coming together in a way here to challenge what their indoctrination is in that small town, to sort of fear difference and that is one of the reasons we all wanted to have this in the series. To see that there is hope, and there is a sense that this town could evolve from the place of intolerance that it was in.

JM: There is also something about the town that starts off in a closed off, buttoned up kind of way and this felt like life bursting out in a way that we hadn’t seen. It felt like the kids almost didn’t have a choice, it was just coming out.

TTVJ: Daisy has really been through a lot lately, with her mother and father and with Jesse’s murder. How will this all affect her going forward? Will this change how she interacts with people?

AM: What’s going to happen is you’re going to see her continuing to process this. Originally in Episode 1 she was doing this project on Sandy, so all of this and the connection to Jesse is all still alive in her and she’s still trying to figure this out. But when we really start to see how she’s going to act out as a result of this experience is guess what in Season 2! Which we really would love to have! She’s going to be a little bit older and we’re really going play out all of this.

JM: I think there is an element of reality that’s setting into her life because of this. She starts to see the world in a real way and her mom’s relationship with Eddie in a new way and we will see that play out for sure.

 

What did you think of “How Do I Remeber?” Do you think Annie is making strides in the case? Let us know in the comments below!

Bellevue airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on CBC.

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