'We have tried really hard to end stories in surprising and interesting places,' Tanen says of the finale

By C. Molly Smith
August 08, 2016 at 12:00 PM EDT
Bob Mahoney/Lifetime
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  • TV Show

The season 4 finale of Devious Maids lands on Monday, and there’s still a ton of drama to get through with the central four women — Rosie (Dania Ramirez), Zoila (Judy Reyes), Carmen (Roselyn Sanchez), and Marisol (Ana Ortiz) — and otherwise.

Showrunner Brian Tanen is hopeful that it will shock and awe. “We have tried really hard to end stories in surprising and interesting places, so there are a number of really fun and unexpected cliffhangers and we really hope that the audience loves them and is intrigued and wants a season 5,” he tells EW.

Here, Tanen and executive producer Sabrina Wind reflect on season 4 and expand on what’s ahead for the juicy finale.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Rosie has spent most of the season trying to uncover who murdered Peri (Mariana Klaveno) to prove that Spence (Grant Show) is innocent. How did you want this driving mystery to unfold, and what can you tease about a reveal of the killer?

BRIAN TANEN: The mystery has always been an important component of the show, so when we set about figuring out the season, we knew that Peri’s murder was going to carry us through. We had a pretty detailed roadmap of who we thought the killer was right from the start and how we were going to get there, so hopefully when the killer is revealed in the finale everyone will be both surprised, excited, and amused.

SABRINA WIND: A good mystery points the finger at a lot of people and yet it’s still super surprising when you find out who it is, and we hope to have accomplished that.

Zoila’s been very helpful to Rosie by using her relationship with her neighbor and love interest, Kyle (Ryan McPartlin), and his mother, Frances (Stephanie Faracy), to get to the bottom of The Circle and its ties to Peri’s murder. How would you describe her arc thus far?

TANEN: Zoila’s arc this season largely had to do with where we left her in the finale of last season. She was broken and needed a fresh start after the loss of her baby, so she did something that Zoila in her normal doings would never have done, which is pretend to be a homeowner in a house she was working in. She enjoyed a fresh start, then got in really over her head.

The romance with Kyle was a fantasy life for her, and over the course of the year it seemed like she realized that the fantasy was not everything she had hoped for, that a fantasy life may not be as good as what’s real. A clarifying moment was that little sex fantasy she had about Adrian (Tom Irwin), who she is friends with, but doesn’t really think of in that way. She was feeling more for Adrian in that moment than she was for Kyle, so that fantasy burst over the course of the season.

In the most recent episode, Genevieve (Susan Lucci) reveals that Hugh Metzger (Sam McMurray), the director of Marisol’s movie, raped her. How did you come to that narrative decision, and what did you want to convey through it?

TANEN: Genevieve has a line in the scene in which she says, “Nobody called it that back then,” expressing changing attitudes about rape. I think it’s important that people are understanding rape and rape culture in a much more modern way, and it was important to represent that on TV, so I was really proud of that scene. I thought Susan Lucci knocked it out of the park in her representation of a woman coming to terms with what had happened to her.

WIND: I found it super fascinating when the writers were going down this road because we have shown Genevieve as a very sexual creature and someone who has not always been faithful, and therefore she probably was put in a certain category in the past that wouldn’t have allowed her to have understood or for society to have accepted that something happened to her, but now we are more appropriate about the way that we deal with women and the things that can happen to them. It’s wonderful to show the change in society that way.

What does this terrible news mean for Daniela (Sol Rodriguez), and where will she find herself in the finale? The last we saw, she went in for a callback for Marisol’s movie, and met with Hugh alone.

TANEN: We pick up with Daniela working with a man we know to be dangerous, but as the women piece together Hugh’s propensity for violence, Carmen will quickly come to Daniela’s aid.

Speaking of Carmen and Daniela, they’ve been at odds since Daniela found out that Carmen is her mother. What steps do they need to take to repair their relationship, and will we see them move forward in the finale?

TANEN: We definitely take a step in that direction. Daniela being in danger really helps Carmen and her take a step toward reconciliation.

And speaking of reconciliation, things aren’t looking so great for Marisol and Peter (James Denton) following her hookups with Jesse (Nathan Owens), but is there a chance of them getting back together, or even talking again?

TANEN: There’s always hope on this show when it comes to relationship twists. I don’t want to give too much away, but I don’t think hope is dead. I’ll say we’ve not seen the last interaction between Peter and Marisol.

Would you say there’s hope for Evelyn (Rebecca Wisocky) and Adrian then, especially since we saw that hint of jealousy in Evelyn when she caught Adrian in a compromising situation with Gail (Julie Claire)?

TANEN: Evelyn and Adrian are inextricably linked and whether or not they are married, they are always together in some form. They’re meant for each other, I think.

WIND: We have tremendous fun with these characters and who they are and how they affect each other.

The season 4 finale of Devious Maids airs Monday at 9 p.m. ET on Lifetime.

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