Nancy Drew star Kennedy McMann unpacks that deadly season 1 finale cliffhanger
Warning: This article contains spoilers for the season 1 finale of Nancy Drew, "The Clue in the Captain's Painting."
Let it be known: Nancy Drew does not make empty threats.
The CW's mystery thriller has teased for a long time that Nancy (Kennedy McMann) refusing to pay the toll to the Aglaeca spirit would have deadly consequences. And while the Drew crew certainly thought Owen's (Miles Gaston Villanueva) death was the Aglaeca curse coming true, it turns out he was murdered by an ordinary human — Joshua Dodd (Kenneth Mitchell), to be exact.
The Aglaeca has not yet claimed its victims, and so by the end of the season 1 finale, "The Clue in the Captain's Painting," the Drew crew saw visions of their own impending deaths via portents, each horrific in their own way. Below, EW got McMann to unpack that deadly cliffhanger and how those portents will affect the characters in season 2.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: That finale ending is one crazy cliffhanger.
KENNEDY MCMANN: Oh yeah, quite literally! [Laughs] Well, I guess not a cliffhanger, but there was a cliff involved.
When you read that final scene where everyone in the Drew crew sees their own death portent, what was your reaction?
I was shocked by it… and very excited. I knew that things were ramping up with the Aglaeca portents. But it was so cool to see it, like this is the reality if you guys don't figure this out. I'm so glad that we showed them exactly what that was going to look like as a real catalyst to get them to spring into action and really do whatever it takes to fix it. Because this can be quite a deadly ending.
It is cool to see the show actually paying off the consequences that were threatened back when they didn’t pay the toll to the Aglaeca. You don’t see that often on TV, especially considering that every main character’s life is on the line.
Right, absolutely. We're in a unique position where, because there are ghosts in our world, killing off a major character is not off the table. You just never know, because it's such a big part of our show that I don't think viewers can get too comfortable.
What do those visions mean for the characters heading into season 2?
A lot of panic ensues, a lot of, "How do we fix this?" But also, for anybody that is anticipating their death under any circumstance, it really makes them realize what's important to them. How do you want to spend your final days? That's definitely a big part of it for the whole Drew crew. "Who do I tell?" and all that kind of stuff. You will see a lot of advancement in romantic relationships or broken relationships that that are put into perspective because knowing that you potentially might die and how do you want to leave the world and how do you want to leave things with people that will survive you, it's really quite beautiful. It really brings out the core of all the characters and who they really care about.
How is this going to affect Nancy specifically, especially since it’s coming so soon after she lost Owen?
It's just another gut-punch. She's really having to face the consequences of her actions. She's always coming from a place of pursuing justice, but maybe this time she went too far and is coming to terms with the fact that she never really thought that there was a too far. She's always willing to do whatever it took, to take any risk, but she's having to come to terms with the fact that it's affecting other people so significantly. She's willing to sacrifice anything in order to save the rest of them and redeem herself from bringing them into it in the first place.
What was it like filming Nancy’s portent scene?
It was so fun! I had never done harness work before, so that was fun. I got hooked up on the harness and I had a big rehearsal. It was really, really cool. And it was cool to give a tragic beauty to it in this being a sort of replication of Lucy's death.
Speaking of that, it's interesting that Nancy’s death portent is same way her biological mother died. Is that similarity going to come into play for her?
I definitely think it will. At that moment, going to the cliffs, she's just searching for answers. She's searching for some clarity, which Lucy was the one who would bring that to her for a really long time, she'd be the guiding light to her. She cultivated this relationship with a ghost throughout the season, and now that that story is resolved, she's a little bit lost. She's already feeling the loss of not really hearing anything from Lucy for a while, and then to have that be her particular death portent, that just hits extra-hard.
What are you most excited for people to see from season 2?
I'm excited to see it myself: how they defeat the Aglaeca curse. There's something about that particular mystery that has been set up since the very beginning of the season, in these little tiny seeds that have been planted with various characters that seem a little out of place, it's all going to come back into play. That'll be so satisfying for people that are fans of the show to put those pieces together from season 1 that they had no idea that they were involved in the storyline. That will be really cool.
Nancy Drew (2019 TV series)