There’s no doubt that In the Dark Fanatics are still reeling from the shocking final moments of In the Dark Season 4 Episode 12 that left Max fallen and ended the primary love story.
And with that devastating series of events in the show’s penultimate episode, we can only brace ourselves for the myriad of emotions we’ll endure when watching In the Dark’s series finale tonight.
Ahead of the finale, TV Fanatic again caught up with the magnanimous, lovely star, Perry Mattfeld, to find out what’s in store for the final hour.
On behalf of the fandom. What the hell, Perry?!
Everyone’s losing their collective minds. So just to confirm, Max Parish, our favorite hobosexual, is really dead? You guys aren’t faking us out somehow, right?
Oh, he’s gone. Oh, I know. Everybody cried real tears, even when we were filming that. It was a very emotional goodbye.
I think what people are obviously reacting to so intensely is that they had finally seemed to let themselves be in love and let themselves just say, “Okay, I’m not going to fight anymore. I love you; let’s just be together.”
And then that got taken away, too. So I think that was probably the most shocking and devastating for everybody.
Yeah, it was sort of teased all season, and then Murphy and Max started making those plans. By then, because the rules of television often dictate it, it wasn’t that surprising per se, but it was still just such a devastating blow.
We went from Murphy set to walk down the wedding aisle to that gorgeous sequence of you, and you looked stunning, walking down the hospital aisle with the blood-stained gown. I had to look up the director because that entire sequence was just amazing.
I’m so glad you say that. I agree. It was definitely some of our most incredible cinematography as well in those last episodes there.
I was just totally caught up in that. What was it even like reading that script? Was it shocking when you read it?
Luckily, our showrunner kind of gave us a heads-up to try to ease the blow. But from reading it to rehearsing it to filming it, it still feels like it’s so intense.
And speaking of cinematography, too, it was cool to film those scenes where we’re kind of in Murphy’s perspective in that blurred world. I actually got to operate the camera for that. I got to embody what Murphy’s perspective would be from a film standpoint.
That was even representative of Murphy’s chaos and how she felt. Bringing the audience into that to feel claustrophobic in her world of panic and disorientation, I think, was a really unique and special way to end the show as well.
It was well done. It reminded me of when Murphy had that moment when she first realized Jess had left her, and it was like we were right there with her with this chaos around her.
Yes, yes. Yes.
Murphy and Max had a rough season of being apart. And then it was the cheating on Leslie and being together. They have not always been the most likable throughout all of that.
Can you talk a little bit about their journey this season?
I was just talking about how I feel like even letting Jess go and knowing, hard as that would be, letting her go was a huge part of Murphy’s growth over four seasons. As hard as that goodbye was, it was Murphy knowing that even as painful as it would be for her, it would make Jess happy.
I definitely feel like there is a lot of growth for Murphy.
Even in the one episode in the motel room between Murphy and Max, there’s a lot of growth in one episode. She starts off with her defensive, very closed-off self, and by the end of that episode, she is in a very vulnerable, soft, happy, happy tears moment with the love of her life.
So they have been through a lot, and I think by the finale, everyone feels like she deserves closure and wants her to get her revenge.
I would imagine. I was just going to ask; it seems like every time she gets close to some happiness, it always comes with a catch. She’s free, maybe of the drug business and illegal stuff, but it’s coming at the cost of the people she loves in her life.
I think it’s cost her everyone except Felix, who is still hanging in there. Can a happy ending ever truly be in the cards for Murphy, or will it always be a catch?
Isn’t that something that everyone can relate to, though? Feeling like they just don’t get a break, you know? That’s what’s so cool about the finale, too.
Will the two best friends ride off into the sunset, not knowing if it’s over? Do they end up married 50 years, and they get old? Who knows? Are they these best friends who decide to stick together because they’re the only ones left?
It’s interesting, after four seasons, even at the very end, she started smoking again. It’ll be interesting to wonder if that means she kind of after everything goes back to the very beginning. It feels like a full circle whirlwind of her life before Max, and now she’s right back.
We’re hoping that the revenge story is sweet and satisfying because, with Josh, the fandom wants blood.
Right? That’s what I mean. It’s like this epic, animalistic finale that I feel everyone wants at this point.
Yeah. Theo [Bhat] is so great. He’s great and too good because I can honestly say it may take a little bit before I can watch him in anything else.
[Laughs] I’ll just say he is the sweetest, most lovable guy. I’ve actually already been to London once to visit him, and I’m going again to see him and stay with his family. In real life, he is a teddy bear.
I’m like, rationally, I know that, and I can trust that, but it’s been rough.[Laughs]
He’ll have to dye his hair or something for the next job.
I understand you guys filmed two different endings. Does that mean you knew the cancelation was coming? And how did you feel about that?
We were prepped that it could go either way. I think the ending that we landed on satisfied either way. It gives the audience closure. I think everyone will feel closure for Murphy and empowered for her and that everything she goes through is justified.
However, it was always written where it could have led us right into another season. But I also don’t know that we could have topped it. I think it’s written brilliantly.
Will there be any Jess sightings? I know fandom definitely wants to know about that.
I know. You know, Jess was always a huge part of Murphy’s identity, and that was something I kept in mind playing Murphy as well through all of season four. But even when I was doing scene work, trying to always keep in mind, is she missing Jess right now, or what does Murphy think Jess is doing right now?
Does she wish she could talk to her? Did she trust anyone like she trusted Jess? Yeah, that would be cool to dream about — if there were another season, would Murphy try to find Jess and take her to coffee and start over?
If you could, of course, describe the series finale in three words, what would they be?
Oh. Animalistic. Vulnerable. And what would be the last word? I mean, it’s brutal, but I’m trying to think of another word. It’s Raw.
What impact has playing Murphy had on you?
I’m extremely grateful to Murphy, the character, for giving me a lot of confidence in my own life. She was written brilliantly as a flawed woman, yet she’s bold, confident, and strong. I feel like I’ve been lucky to learn from her and bring some of that to my own life and my own voice as Perry and as a young woman.
I definitely am really grateful to Murphy and most grateful to The CW for giving us four years of support because that is very rare and an anomaly. I’m grateful to have that four years on that playground where I felt supported and loved. That was a dream.
Thank you so much for speaking with me, Perry.
Thank you so much, and thank you for continuing to support our little show. I really appreciate it.
The In the Dark series finale airs tonight at 9/8c on The CW.
If you need to catch up ahead of time you can watch In the Dark online here via TV Fanatic. Don’t forget to check back in for our final review of the series.
You can also catch Perry Mattfeld in Who Invited Them on Shudder.
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.