Fox’s Tuesday nights are all about comedy, with Lethal Weapon, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and The Mick as the starring shows. At TCA they took part in a joint panel to discuss their upcoming new seasons and the secrets of their success.
For Lethal Weapon–the reboot of the original 1987 Mel Gibson and Danny Glover buddy cop movie, the new season will make the most of Riggs (Clayne Crawford)’s origin story in flashbacks. The grief-stricken cop will also once again enjoy the help of therapist Maureen Cahill, played by Jordana Brewster. There will also be the new addition of Michele Hurd as Gina Santos, the new Chief of Police. Damon Wayans, who plays Murtaugh, said, “It’s wonderful. Michele is awesome, and the character is someone from my past. I think I had something going on with her, but it’s really in my mind and she’s here to bust my balls, it’s fun.” Hilarie Burton will also return as Karen Palmer in Season 2.
The action in the new season begins in Mexico and the loose ends of last season are to be tied up very early on, EP Matt Miller said. “At the end of season one, Riggs drives off to Mexico and we begin Season 2 a couple of weeks later. Murtaugh has spent a couple of weeks looking for Riggs in Mexico and racked up a credit card bill his wife is not too happy about.”
Wayans added that Murtaugh is being criticized by his wife in other ways too, particularly in reference to his motorcycle. “Murtaugh has the bike, he doesn’t use the bike because his wife won’t let him,” he said wryly.
One of the central reasons for the show’s success is the chemistry between Crawford and Wayans, who said they bonded over a basketball game and chat about their families. But they felt that viewers did not expect them to be successful Crawford said. “I think the audience set the bar really low and everyone expected us to get cancelled after a couple of episodes,” he said. “We got lucky we genuinely don’t hate each other – that along with the great material, we’re just kind of lucky.”
When it comes to the bonding of co-stars on that other comedy cop show, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, EP Dan Goor joked to the show’s leads, Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher: “You guys sauna a lot together right?” Samberg also claimed his beard was the result of his character Jake’s jail term handed out last season. Goor explained the decision to send Jake to jail, saying, “When we came up with the end-of-season arc for Season 4, we were excited by the idea of doing a courtroom case, and we felt like we had three options for a cliffhanger. One was obviously where the verdict was not guilty — guilty just seemed like the most exciting ending. It just gives us stories going forward and this time it will hopefully impact the characters in a meaningful way going forward.”
One thing the show has come up against is the fact they cannot show nudity. “Frequently we can’t show things for sure,” Goor said. “I don’t think Fox has any pixelations.”
The lack of nudity and pixelation was something of a shock to Samberg, he said. “When I came from SNL to do this I was like, “What? That’s everything I’ve done.”
As for guest stars, Samberg said, “We have Tim Meadows joining us [as Jake’s cellmate] and Lou Diamond Phillips.”
“Some of our old favorites will be back as well,” added Goor.
For The Mick, continuing to explore issues of diversity will be the order of the day for its second season, having featured a gender identity storyline in Season 1. “I think we try to do it without taking too strong a stance on anything,” co-creator John Chernin said. “With the gender identity issue, it’s easy for us to just lean into, ‘be yourself and be what you want to be like.’”
The show centers around the feckless Mickey (Kaitlin Olsen), and what happens when she ‘inherits’ her spoiled rich-kid niece and nephews. Going forward viewers will see the family coping with the loss of their house. “I think they were left only one option after their house burned down, and that was to check into a five-star hotel, so that’s where we’ll pick up Season 2,” Chernin said.
The show also explores the contrasting levels of privilege experienced by Mickey and the kids. “There are a lot of ups and downs this season,” co-creator Dave Chernin said. “The show works so well when we juxtapose those two cultures.”