Final season of How to Get Away With Murder is about 'acceptance' for Bonnie and Frank
Everyone on How to Get Away With Murder is messed up, but Frank (Charlie Weber) and Bonnie (Liza Weil) might be the most messed up of all.
As Weber notes, “Of all the murders and all the death, Frank and Bonnie are the only two characters who’ve committed premeditated murder.”
He has a point. Bonnie has a heap of trauma in her past, having been sexually abused by her father as a child and sold to others for similar abuses. Frank tried to kill his dad for the fun of it and ended up growing up in jail thanks to a 10-year sentence. Both of them found support and solace in Annalise (Viola Davis), and for a time, Sam (Tom Verica), but over the last five seasons their loyalties have led them to veer wildly between love and hate for the lady at the heart of it all.
So what lies ahead for the most maladjusted characters in the entire TGIT lineup? Well, Weil hopes it’s acceptance. “So many of these characters are carrying around all of their misdeeds and sins,” she tells EW, “and I think the arc for all of us will be to see if they can get to a place where they can learn how to carry that load and how that can feel okay to them in continuing their lives.”
That load is heavier for Bonnie than others, given that she suffocated her paramour, D.A. Ronald Miller (John Hensley), believing him responsible for the death of Nate’s father. Ron had been her first true chance at romantic happiness, perhaps ever, and he was on the verge of proposing when Bonnie and Nate (Billy Brown) murdered him.
“Bonnie’s going to have to come to terms with what she thinks she deserves,” Weil says. “A lot of what happened last season, some of that is informed by the past trauma in her life. A defining characteristic of Bonnie is feeling she doesn’t deserve happiness. It’s more comfortable for her to take up room caring for other people. Her receiving that kind of love last season was so new and uncomfortable, there may have been a little bit of self-sabotage in play.”
In an entirely different way, Frank, who has served alongside Bonnie as essentially one of Annalise’s henchmen, is also finding his way to acceptance. Last season, he resolved to be a “better Frank,” mostly for Laurel (Karla Souza), but by season’s end he’d thrown that out the window. “There’s been an acceptance of what he’s best at,” Weber says. “It was a brief experiment of trying be a better person, [and it was] ill-advised. A lot of his story has been him pretending to be normal, or what he sees as normal. It’s all been an act, from the three-piece suits to the coiffed hair. It was all a costume, and he’s finally to the point where he is just accepting what he is.”
Which, in essence, is a killer. Frank is a man of action, so the name of the game for him in the final season is that forward motion. “He’s just going to go forward with all the stuff he’s got to get done,” Weber hints.
There remains one big secret between Frank and Bonnie (and Annalise and Bonnie) — the fact that Ron Miller was an innocent man and even tried to save Nate’s father’s life. “It’s very likely she will discover the truth,” Weil admits. “The stakes for that secret are certainly going to be very, very high. Bonnie and Nate are extremely tied because of the events of last season, but she does keep coming back to her core people of Frank and Annalise. That secret coming out will be a huge test as to whether those bonds can endure that.”
There is much to uncover when it comes to the twisty world of How to Get Away With Murder, and it remains to be seen whether season 6’s revelations lead to happy endings. Weber sounds skeptical. “You can’t live your life like that and have a happy ending,” he says.
But Weil trusts that the strongest bonds will survive. “All of these characters are so badly yearning for connection, and there’s still so many secrets they’re keeping from each other,” she muses. “I’m hoping it’s all on the table and the bonds that are strong will endure and play out however they need to.”
How to Get Away With Murder returns Thursday, Sept. 26, at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.