HBO’s drama series The Leftovers just wrapped its third and final season, and when asked about a potential revival, co-creator and executive producer Tom Perrotta quelled any hope with a definitive “No.” Even in the hypothetical sense, the creatives further cemented their desire to end the series how it was. “If [HBO] had said ‘we want two more seasons I would have battled very aggressively to change their mind about that,” said co-creator and ep Damon Lindelof. “It was so clear to us that we were closer to the end but if they said it was two seasons or nothing, we probably would have done two more… that’s the good news about HBO, they don’t roll that way.”

HBO

Lindelof and Perrotta were alongside EP and show director Mimi Leder on day one of the annual ATX Television Festival in Austin, TX.

When asked about the kind of reaction they’ve received since the finale aired, Lindelof, who also created the ABC series Lost, joked, “I’m just really relieved that no one asked me if they were dead the whole time… I just don’t know what to do. It’s easier to take in confusion, criticism and hatred than it is to take in love.”

When asked about the final scene of the series, which ends with Carrie Coon’s character Nora saying, “I’m here” Lindelof said the thought was “how do we diffuse the male antihero trope and how do we make Kevin (Justin Theroux) not that?”

“The answer became, what if this show is just as much about Nora if not more about Nora than it is about Kevin, and that he’s in service of her story,” he continued. “You give the last line to the lead… In many ways, the journey of the show, the most profound loss felt, the person who was struggling most with a variety of coping mechanisms, who was the least likely to adopt a system of belief.. that’s Nora Durst.”

Adding more on the show’s ending, Leder, who directed the finale, said her “mantra during the entire shoot was keep it simple,” while Perrotta added “we stayed true to the core about the show which really is a question about people and relationships. In this world that’s marked by loss…can we just leave them in a moment of restoration and constellation” and “a successful journey to reconnect…It felt right to end on the most basic form of connection.”