Servant creator talks season 1 finale revelation, teases season 2
Warning: This article contains spoilers about the season 1 finale of Servant.
Are we all on the same page now? At the end of the Servant season 1 finale, released Friday on Apple TV+, Dorothy Turner (Lauren Ambrose) finally came face-to-face with the doll version of her late son, Jericho. At the very same time that her husband, Sean (Toby Kebbell), finally accepted the possibility that their son had miraculously been returned to them, the infant was snatched away again, leaving the doll in his place. EW caught up with writer and creator Tony Basgallop to talk over the season 1 finale and what it means going into season 2.
“She’s seeing the doll as a doll for the first time,” Basgallop says of Dorothy. “She’s no longer picking up this doll and being deluded into thinking it’s a baby. However, she still does believe that her baby is out here.”
And, in fact, baby Jericho very much is out there! The last we see of him, he’s being taken outside by his nanny, Leanne (Nell Tiger-Free), who meets up with the other members of her religious community before suddenly vanishing.
“All along, we’ve wondered if there is something about her that is different,” Basgallop says. “Does she have the ability to produce a baby out of thin air? Was it stolen from the street or was it brought miraculously? That moment where she steps out with the baby, having convinced herself that Dorothy and her family are not deserving of this miracle she delivered to them, and there are all these people waiting for her, there’s a very supernatural air to it. Their sudden disappearance, told from the eyes of a passing police car, are all ways for me to say, ‘Look, Sean was right. Sean’s holding his hand over a flame and not feeling anything. There are all these things that cannot be justified.’ So in a way, it’s an uplifting ending for me: Miracles do exist, and there’s a chance to have your baby back. But on the downside, me being who I am and the show being what it is, we take it away at that moment. So now if they want it back, they’ll have to fight harder. Nothing is gonna come easy for this family anymore.”
When first teasing Servant at New York Comic Con this year, producer M. Night Shyamalan declared that he could see the show lasting for as many as six seasons. The future is uncertain, but Servant has been renewed for second season, at least. Season 1 was remarkable for how much of it was set within the Turners’ Philadelphia home, and Basgallop says that probably won’t change in season 2 — there will just be more to explore.
“I don’t want to break what’s working. We’ve always been open to if we need to or want to expand beyond this household, we can. It comes down to story, and at the moment I feel there’s still a lot of story to tell,” Basgallop says. “I know it’s a horribly overused cliche, but the house is a character in itself. Everybody says that in a show, but I think we have a bit more claim to it after spending 10 episodes there without leaving. There are rooms in this house we haven’t opened yet. We haven’t explored every corner of this house, there’s a little more to show. As the show grows and develops, we have the freedom to open the world up, and when it feels right, we will. What I always want to avoid is establishing locations that are just to pass information. If we open another door, it’s an important door to go through. There’s a reason we’re showing you more of the world. We have to earn it. The house is so critical to everything we’ve seen, it would be jarring to just suddenly go somewhere else.”
Earlier this week, a lawsuit was filed against Apple, Basgallop, and Shyamalan accusing them of copyright infringement by Francesca Gregorini, director of the 2013 film The Truth About Emanuel. Apple declined to comment.
All 10 episodes of Servant season 1 are streaming on Apple TV+ now.