Up next in our Midnight, Texas Set Visit Diaries is Arielle Kebbel. She talks about Olivia and Lem’s married life, her character’s reaction to the new people in town, and how Olivia’s past continues to impact her life.
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Olivia and Lem have tied the knot. Is Olivia enjoying married life?
It’s a pain in the ass for Olivia, but shouldn’t it be? We start the season with them as a newly married couple. There are some renovations to Olivia’s place to make it Olivia and Lem’s, which is pretty exciting. Then we go straight into our psychic connection which is very exciting for Olivia for about two seconds, and then takes a quick turn. Marriage is a big enough deal for her, and then you’ve got someone who can feel her every move. It’s a real struggle between them in finding your independence in this new relationship when you have a psychic connection.
There’s also many other struggles happening in Midnight at the same time, and we have to learn to juggle a lot of balls up in the air at once. I guess that’s married life too. You don’t just have your relationship to work through. You have real life, too.
How does Olivia feel about the new people in town?
Olivia obviously doesn’t like them, but she doesn’t like anyone at first. [Patience and Kai] come to town, and everybody’s shocked by their arrival because they’re building this hotel next to Home Cooking. It’s especially shocking to [Olivia] because half of the Midnighters are trying to embrace them, half aren’t really sure, and [Olivia] is sitting there going, “This guy’s a scam. What is he doing here? What do they want from us? What’s he doing with her? I’m going to get to the bottom of this.”
It’s a really fun journey through the season because we’re potentially met with the season’s enemy in Episode 1. How do you deal with this face-to-face rivalry and gather research, but also listen to other people? [Kai] may or may not be saving people’s lives along the way. It makes for a really fun jumpstart to Season 2. Then you’ve got all the sub stories. Nestor [Carbonell] and Jaime Ray [Newman] are two incredibly talented actors. All of our guest stars [this season] are incredible.
How much of Olivia’s past is going to come into play in Season 2?
The important thing to remember about Olivia is whether you’re seeing it or not — or whether she’s talking about it or not — it’s always coming into play because it’s what shaped the woman she is today. Some of her experiences may have happened as a child, but she’s never let go of them. She’s never forgotten them. She’s learned to deal with them and be a survivor, but the survival skills are poured on top of these initial wounds. For me, it’s always important to remember the wounds and then start adding all the ingredients on top to cover the wounds. When she’s funny, when she angry, when she’s kicking ass, when she’s protecting someone — where is that coming from? It’s really rooted in this deep place of pain, for someone to be so strong but actually so broken. I really wanted to bring that into the scenes. This season, I’m really excited for people to actually learn even more of her backstory and really see her allow herself to face that pain for the first time if not ever in a very, very long time.
Lem has a lot to do with that. She’s building a partnership, so now she suddenly feels a little more safe to explore the pain of the past. It’s a really brave thing to dig up all those old feelings and let them out. And I think [viewers] are going to see a whole different side of Olivia, so get ready. Get your tissues out!
In the books, Olivia’s dad comes into play at one point. Is that a possibility this season?
There’s lots of Olivia’s dad talk. Get ready!
Have you read the Midnight, Texas books?
Yes, it was really important to me. Some people choose not to, and I understand that. To me, it was important because Olivia has so much going on. We don’t get that much one-on-one time with Charlaine [Harris], so I felt like I needed to pull as much information as possible to make Olivia. Once I made her, I felt comfortable to go and play. In Season 2, it’s much more emotional, and we’re not totally sticking to the books so there’s a lot more creative freedom.
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