Mayans M.C. star Carla Baratta on Adelita passing the torch to Mini: 'She's ready'
Also, Melany Ochoa and Momo Rodriguez break down the events of episode 309, "The House of Death Floats By."
Warning: This article contains spoilers about Tuesday's episode of FX's Mayans M.C.
Cheering for FX's renewal of Mayans M.C. for a fourth season was fun for a little over 24 hours before the penultimate episode of season 3 aired on Tuesday night and completely changed the game. A lot of blood was shed, and tough decisions were made, including Adelita's (Carla Baratta) decision to promote her surrogate daughter and protégé Mini (Melany Ochoa) by gifting her the honor of killing Palomo (Mia Maestro).
"In this episode, we finally start to see Adelita's plan, and part of that plan is giving Mini the responsibility of being the new leader of Los Olvidados," Baratta tells EW. "This puts Adelita in a very vulnerable position, and we don't know what the last part of her plan is yet. I think it's really interesting to see her give so much power to this little girl that's almost her own child. Adelita thinks she's ready."
Adds Ochoa, "In season 1 and 2, Mini was more Adelita's sidekick, but throughout season 3, she's grown into her own. She was forced to grow up when her mom Adelita was [taken by Potter]. With no one to look up to, Mini started doing what the other kids were doing, and that was tough to cope with. She was lost."
Baratta feels killing a big fish like Palomo was the perfect rite of passage for Mini as she steps into the light in this world full of darkness.
"I thought it was a beautiful way to do it because these characters are surrounded by violence, and it's all they know," Baratta shares. "It was like I was giving Mini a prize by killing Palomo, earning her the top spot. Trust me, Adelita would've loved to have been the one to kill Palomo, but this is how it needed to happen."
Ochoa is one of the youngest members of the Mayans M.C. cast, and she giggles while sharing an anecdote about how her mom only allows her to watch her own scenes on TV. She also says she believes Mini "was nervous when it was time to kill Palomo" because she "wanted to make Adelita proud."
"I was really nervous on that day, but I got the gist of what was going to happen when I saw Carla kill Salvador [Chacon], who played Pablo," she says. "Before my scene, there was already blood all over the floor, and I was slipping and sliding on my knees! By the way, what I used wasn't even a real knife; it's a prop with a blade that just goes in and out."
And while Palomo's death will hardly matter in the big picture, the M.C. will be reeling from Steve's (Momo Rodriguez) heartbreaking suicide for some time. He had only minutes earlier been made a fully patched brother after killing on behalf of the M.C.
"Growing up, I saw men like the ones in the M.C., and if I hadn't listened to my parents, I'd have been Steve," Rodriguez says. "It's that search for something greater, wanting to be known in the neighborhood and respected. That's what Steve wants. Steve is in love with the way people look at EZ [JD Pardo], with how Hank [Frankie Loyal] is feared and respected. Steve has never had that; he's the punchline. But he soon realized that not everything that glitters is gold."
He adds, "EZ was Steve's guiding light, and that was a relationship EZ initiated because he had also been a prospect. As it turns out, though, EZ and Steve are two different people. Steve couldn't stop seeing the guy he killed [in his mind] and his kids and his family. He was really traumatized."
Rodriguez, who acts and is also a stand-up comic, embraced a sad event from earlier this year to bring real emotion into the character's struggle.
"My mother passed away in January, so it was really tough for me to be on set that day," Rodriguez shares. "The cast and crew, everybody was so beautiful to me during my loss, and they were there for me every second. I used Steve as a way of therapy. I wanted Steve to be amazing for my mom and for me because that day, I lost somebody else. I was about to lose Steve, the guy that was there for me when I needed him the most. It was a very emotional experience. My eyes that whole episode are glazed, and that was no makeup, that was all me."
He adds, "When my scene was over, I walked off, and everyone was clapping for me. I was so proud of our journey together and all we accomplished. I hope Steve will be remembered next season and that the show touches on the hurt left behind, especially with Hank. And I hope he will always be a remembrance of brotherhood."
Mayans M.C. airs Tuesday nights at 10 p.m. via FX.
- Watch Kelly Marie Tran nail her The Book of Mormon performance at MCC's Miscast
- Who Killed Sara? star Manolo Cardona teases killer's true identity and a 'reloaded' season 2
- Your first look at Anna Paquin, Martha Plimpton, and more in Flack season 2
- Michelle Rodriguez to star in Fast and Furious-inspired competition show for Discovery