If you’re hoping we haven’t seen the last of Letty (Michelle Dockery) and Javier (Juan Diego Botto), especially after that final moment of Good Behavior‘s Season 2 finale, you’re not alone. Creator Chad Hodge is still waiting to hear if TNT will order a third season of the drama, but he made sure fans knew exactly where the story would head next — to L.A.
After finally succeeding in burning the bodies of the two men Letty had murdered, the duo decided it’d be best if they disappeared for a bit. That will be expensive. Luckily, they have the late Teo’s cocaine to sell. “Given everything that’s happened to them, or that they’ve created in this whirlwind tornado, they have to be somewhere else. I was thinking, where do you go to sell cocaine, and where would Letty kind of want to go? L.A.,” Hodge tells us. “There’s lots of pop-culture references that she’s always dropping and Javier is never understanding them, and I thought it would be fun to put them in L.A. I’ve also talked a lot about how we call the tone of our show ‘poetic noir,’ and Los Angeles is where noir was born. It’s not that it’s them on Rodeo Drive; it’s them on the outskirts of L.A. — the Valley, downtown, East L.A. — getting into trouble, and there’s a big overarching story.”
And because we know you’re wondering: yes, he’d definitely find a way to work Estelle, Rob, Jacob, Christian, and Lashever into the story.
Though he wasn’t going to force it, Hodge had the image of Season 2’s last scene being Letty and Javier in a pool floating on inflatable swans since he began work on it. Why were they dressed up in that final shot? Because it looks hella cool? “No, that’s the secondary reason,” Hodge says with a laugh. “The scene you see [before that is] them driving away from the storage facility in Georgia with the cocaine. Now they’re in Arizona or wherever they are on the way to L.A., and it’s daytime and they’re in definitely nighttime evening wear. What did they just come from? In my head, they had just come back from a night of doing something that didn’t really work out.”
Though they seem content in that moment, Letty’s murder of the innocent security guy (guest star Brian Baumgartner) continues to weigh her. “I think it would always weigh on her, for sure. In fact, there was a thing that we shot where when they’re in the pool on the swans, she actually has a vision of him on the bottom of the pool, but it felt like that was going to say, ‘Oh, all of Season 3 this guy is going to follow her around,’ which isn’t the idea,” Hodge says. “But she’s not going to forget that this is something that she did, and you know, she says it to Javier when they’re watching the van burn with the bodies. She’s like, ‘I’ve done this now, and maybe I wasn’t so bad before. I mean, so I stole some shoes and drank too much. Now I’ve killed two people.’ That’ll never go away.”
Asked about the scene that opened the finale, in which Letty begged Javier to let her kill herself, to let her be good at something, Hodge admits it was difficult to watch Dockery film it. “She’s always so 150 million percent in, and she just went for it as she always does in such a real way, which is the reason the show works. And it was heartbreaking to watch, because obviously I’ve been with Letty as long as Michelle has. We’ve been through it together, and seeing her from the pilot to now, this character take this journey, and then it’s just like, ‘I just give up,'” he says. “She talked about trying to kill herself in the very first episode [of the series] when Javier finds her in the motel room. She says, ‘Just shoot me, just do it. Just kill me. Just get it over with.’ In some way it would be just easier for her to be dead. And in this moment [in the Season 2 finale], she just wants to be good at something. There’s a line that we cut from it, because it was a little too funny in the moment. But she said, ‘Let me be good at one thing. I have very good aim, obviously.’ She’s just like, ‘Let me do this and be good at this,’ and it’s sad.”
Another of the finale’s most memorable moments: when Letty’s lighter won’t work as they’re about to burn the bodies. “We arrive at things sometimes in a very surprisingly linear way,” Hodge says, “because we were talking about, ‘Oh, she should be smoking a lot and Javier’s really annoyed that she’s smoking a lot, but of course she’s smoking a lot because she’s nervous and she’s freaking out and she’s stressed, and he’s just going to let her smoke because at least it will keep her calm.’ Then we were like, ‘Oh my God! When they go to burn the bodies, he doesn’t have a lighter. He needs her lighter and her lighter is out of fluid!’ We came to that naturally, and that’s always fun when that happens. The same thing happened with the cactus, where in episode eight, Javier’s brother brings a little small houseplant cactus as a housewarming gift, and then I was like, ‘Oh, she can use that cactus to hit Teo, and then get the gun’ [in episode nine].”
It’s those kind of payoffs that we’ll miss if the show isn’t renewed. Perhaps second only to the lighter: the moment in Season 2’s penultimate episode when Letty told Teo, who had control of her phone, to text Javier that he should bring her back a mixed greens salad from the diner where Teo failed to meet him. Like Javier, the audience knows Letty is more of a burger girl, so we understood she was trying to tip him off that Teo was with her — which is why it was so satisfying when Javier immediately bolted the diner.
“A lot of the fans noticed that, which was fun,” Hodge says. “I was actually talking to Lenore [Zion], who wrote episode eight and co-wrote episode nine, and she goes, ‘You know, all those little details that you make us put in there are the things that the fans really pick up on and it’s fun when they do.’ I was like, ‘Really? Okay. I don’t know what they’re going to pick up on from this episode .’ Lenore goes, ‘I think it’s going to be the mixed greens salad thing. They’re going to love that.’ I was like, ‘Oh, maybe. We’ll see if they notice.’ Thank you for noticing.”
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