Warning: Spoilers from the Scream Queens season 1 finale lie ahead!
Scream Queens wrapped its freshman season on Tuesday with a two-hour season finale addressing a number of burning questions, one of the biggest being: Who is the remaining Red Devil?
The answer: Hester Ulrich (Lea Michele), twin sister to the previously revealed Red Devil, Boone (Nick Jonas). What’s more, it was revealed that while Pete (Diego Boneta), who referred to himself as a “murderer” in last week’s episode, was not the remaining Red Devil, he had in fact donned the costume and killed a number of victims.
Below, Michele opens up about her villainous turn, that brutal (so, so brutal) shoe scene, sophomore season potential, and more. Read on, if you dare:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: When did you find out that Hester is the remaining Red Devil?
LEA MICHELE: I found out in New York. [Keke, Emma, and I] were at EW Fest. They had gotten the script. I hadn’t gotten it yet because I was traveling to New York. I was like “Oh, did you get the final script? … Who’s the killer?” And they were like, “It’s you.” I was like, “Are you serious?” And they were like, “Yeah, you get away with it.” I marched right over to [series co-creator] Ryan [Murphy], and I was like, “Okay, but am I going to live? Is everything fine?” He’s like, “Yeah, you get away with it.” I got to go home a few days later to New Orleans and read the script and got the whole breakdown.
How did you react to the news?
I was really shocked. I was so grateful that Ryan brought this incredible opportunity to me. I never thought that he had thought out that I was the killer. I thought he was like “Oh, I’m doing this new show, and [will] write a really cool, new role for Lea Michele,” but the fact that he went into it thinking that I was the killer is so awesome [and] cool.
It was so fun to watch you realize your villainy.
It was really fun to play. I got to do so many different things with Hester. I got to be funny, weird, a little sexual, vulnerable — like in that Chad Radwell (Glen Powell) episode with the family — calculated, villainous, and then, at the end, happy and relieved. I really just got to do so much with this character.
In the Chad Radwell episode with the family, “Thanksgiving,” there are moments where Hester seems sympathetic to Chanel (Emma Roberts), like when Chanel defends Hester and herself to the Radwell family.
And she’s sympathetic to me.
But by the end of the season, Hester’s hate just seems so pure. Do you think there were moments throughout the season where Hester might have reconsidered her plan, or was she always committed to it?
I think she was always committed to her plan. Even in that moment, Hester had a very intense love-hate relationship with Chanel. She was obsessed with her, and there was an intensity to her relationship with her. At the end of the day, it was so nice that Chanel did that for her in the moment, but it’s not so much Chanel, it’s what Chanel represents. The sorority has been this way for forever, and it just so happens that Chanel was the one to take the blame. Maybe [Hester] had moments of liking [Chanel] throughout the season, but no matter what, she had to move forward with her plan.
In the episode, Hester stabs herself in the eye with a high heel to keep suspicions off of her. How did you handle that brutal scene?
It was a very intense process. We had the shoe, the prosthetics, and rigs. The shoe was glued to my face. It took a lot of doing it over and over again, and special effects had to be there. I have never been a part of something that took that much work. The shoe goes from episode 11 into episode 12, so there were so many times where I was like, “Are we done with the shoe yet?” Actually, there were more scenes with the shoe that they cut, and I was so happy. It took a lot of hard work and our special effects team is just so incredible. So is our makeup team, Melissa Buell, who did my incredible eye prosthetic. I just can’t wait to see it.
After the shoe incident, Hester accuses Chanel, Chanel #3 (Billie Lourd), and Chanel #5 (Abigail Breslin) of being behind the Red Devil killings in a very lengthy and calculated speech. What was your experience like filming that scene?
I’ve had some intense dialogue thrown at me on Glee, some really big, long Rachel Berry speeches and stuff like that. Rachel talked super fast and very determined, but that [scene] was definitely one of the hardest things I’ve ever done because it was all factual, and it had to be done so precisely. There wasn’t any room for ad-libbing. That was hard, [and] I was so sick. I had a fever of like 102. It was late at night, [and] it took us two days to film, so when that was done, even though it wasn’t the actual wrap of the show, it felt like the wrap to me.
The episode ends with a shocker, with someone in the Red Devil costume standing over Chanel, who had been sent to an asylum along with Chanel #3 and Chanel #5 following the trio’s arrest and trial, with a knife. Do you think that was Hester?
I think it could have been, but it also could have been a dream.
That’s interesting. My first thought was that Hester found her peace and got her revenge…
So I wondered if maybe someone else was continuing on as the Red Devil.
I know that next year Ryan wants to have a completely different killer, so I think that might have been a dream. Maybe it’s Hester letting them out of the institution? Who knows? I don’t know, but I wouldn’t put anything past Ryan Murphy.
RELATED VIDEO: Ryan Murphy teases Scream Queens finale
If the show returns for season 2, would you come back?
Absolutely. Ryan is not getting rid of me. We can do many more seasons of Scream Queens, then we can reboot Glee. We’re just going to keep going. He’s such a great friend. He’s such a genius. I’m so happy. I feel like there were so many people along the way in the process of Glee who wanted to go out and spread their wings, wanted to go out and do other things, and I love Ryan and think he’s where it’s at. I never really felt as an actor that I wanted or needed to be anywhere else. Look at these two different, incredible characters that he’s written for me. I think whatever he has in mind for season 2 [would] be incredible.