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By Rosy Cordero
March 01, 2021 at 08:07 PM EST
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And just like that, Peacock's Punky Brewster revival wraps its first season leaving lots of juicy tidbits to discuss.

The elephant in the room, a.k.a. Punky's (Soleil Moon Frye) birth mother, was brought up early in the season and it wasn't for naught. Susan B. (Sharon Lawrence) materialized at last, 20 years after she abandoned her young daughter at a supermarket. It was emotional and brief, but it leaves the door open for much more, or nothing at all, in the future.

Punky Brewster
Credit: Peacock

"I think it was a question we all had for so many years, I know I did," Frye tells EW exclusively of opening that Pandora's box on Monday. "Why did she abandon Punky? What was going on in her life? This is something we really wanted to explore. It was such an incredible experience to go through that arc. Punky felt like she needed to feel ready to go through this and to take her in. While we were shooting it, it was like you lose yourself so much in the people that it didn't feel like a scene. It felt like this real connection between people that love each other who also have been through so much pain. I remember after we shot that moment, I saw crewmembers in tears. That was so inspiring to me."

After so many years, where does that leave Punky as she looks ahead forever changed?

"Punky is really coming of age again like Soleil is," she says emotionally. "We're both coming of age again in a sense and rediscovering our Punky and Soleil power. Also, as two survivors that look at the culmination of our life experiences — the love, the joy, the pain, and realize that these are all experiences that happen for us and not to us. I love when she shares the letter with her mom that talks about so much of the pain she went through. And yet, if everything hadn't happened as it did, she'd have never met Henry, or Cherie, or held her baby girl. She had to go through the pain of abandonment. I think that's so much a testament to Punky and speaks to my own human experiences of going through joy and pain in life that I view it the same way. Which is, I wouldn't change a single thing about the experience. I feel very aligned with Punky's story, we are both survivors. I lean into her a lot for inspiration."

Punky Brewster
Credit: Eddy Chen/Peacock

When viewers first see Punky again after so many years of being apart, she's a divorced mom of three whose ex Travis Luna (Freddie Prinze Jr.) is a very involved co-parent. As Izzy (Quinn Copeland) joins the fold, she develops a relationship with Travis, and he surprises the family by not going on tour with his band in the finale so he can be there for her when Punky goes to her court hearing.

Could this bring the former couple to reconcile?

"That's the big question! I love how he showed up for them at the courthouse, [Punky and Travis] have so much love for each other," she explains. "I think it will be interesting to explore whether or not he keeps showing up in the way that she needs. Does he struggle with it? Trust me, even I want to know! I hope everyone watches the show so we can do more and find out the answers to these questions. I've spoken to the showrunners and I've shared my ideas with them. I feel like we have enough stories for at least eight seasons so far."

One of Frye's big ideas is tied to the news that Cherie (Cherie Johnson) is engaged to her fabulous girlfriend Lauren (Jasika Nicole).

"I love it," she says excitedly of Cherie and Lindsey's engagement. "Don't they have such a great dynamic? I would love to see the wedding happen. I would love to see also some of our cast from the original come to the celebration. I have this dream of seeing T.K. Carter there and Casey Ellison who played Allen. I want to bring everybody back and see them all be a part of the new show. It's really so much fun to dream about the future of Punky."

Watch all 10-episodes of the Punky Brewster revival via Peacock, available in its entirety now.

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Punky Brewster

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  • TV Show
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  • NBC

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