[Editor’s Note: The below article contains spoilers for the Season 2 finale of “UnREAL.” Read on at your own risk.]
“UnREAL” Season 2 came to an end with a crash — literally. Jeremy (Josh Kelly) attempted to prove his devotion to Rachel by orchestrating a lethal-looking car accident for her would-be accusers (Coleman and Yael). And though the TV report revealing as much said there were “no reports on the conditions of the occupants,” Constance Zimmer is “pretty sure” they’re dead.
The Emmy-nominated star — up for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series this year — spoke with IndieWire about the Season 2 finale, sharing her perspective on the season and what she expects is coming in Season 3. Zimmer noted how she was “really upset” over Quinn and Rachel’s ongoing rivalry in Season 2, citing how the show is better when its women are together.
But there’s still an important lesson for viewers to learn from their infighting, just as Zimmer puts a huge importance on Quinn’s struggles in the final two episodes — specifically, her break-up with John Booth (Ioan Gruffodd) and her inability to have a child. “The pressure that women are under to conceive in general, I don’t think that’s talked about enough,” Zimmer said.
Below, Zimmer digs into the wild second season, the new “fucked up family” formed for Season 3 and the importance of choice — for women and men.
First things first — can you tell us if Coleman and Yael are officially dead? Did they die in that car wreck?
I’m pretty sure they did.
I thought so, but the news report left it open.
I think it’s probably meant to be unclear. But as far as the longevity of “Everlasting,” it’s the only ending it can be.
It’s interesting because we definitely shot a bunch of endings — various endings.
Were the other endings minor alterations or did they significantly change what happened at the end of the episode?
I think it was different endings in terms of specificity. I think the choice to leave it a little bit open to interpretation is better, so nobody — the audience and us — knows how much it affects these characters going into next season.
In Season 1, there was the catastrophic death of the contestant, and now Season 2 ends with two potential deaths in this car wreck. What was going through Quinn’s head when they’re all sitting in those lawn chairs, quietly trying to process their guilt and association to what’s happened because of “Everlasting”?
What I liked about it — and also thought was a little jarring — is how it does mirror the ending of the first season: them being left with the weight of the world and wondering, “Well, now what do we do?” They kind of become this really fucked up family, and that dynamic is what’s interesting to me for next season. Now it’s not just Quinn and Rachel. Now they’ve created more evildoers. [laughs] These people are willing to do anything for this show and each other. It’s a true “oh shit” moment.
I do think Rachel and Quinn will go into the next season bonded more than ever. I’m excited about that because I was really upset this season by how much Rachel and Quinn were at odds. I like them so much more when they are bonded – when they cannot leave each other’s side — and it kind of feels like that’s what’s going to happen. Rachel is going to be in another position where as much as she might want to leave, she can’t. For Quinn, it’s like, “Oh, now I have her once again — at least for another season.”
That kind of bond was teased at the beginning of Season 2, but they they were still at odds most of the year. What were you hoping the audience would get out of seeing that kind of conflict between two women?
I think the most obvious thing it showed is that when women are not supportive of each other, it’s incredibly toxic. You aren’t your best because you’re spending so much of your energy trying to outdo the other woman. If we all just worked together more often and supported each other more often, we’d have a much greater reward and a much greater ending. With Quinn and Rachel together, you don’t want to mess with those two.
To me, this season was just showing that women are really mean and can be super evil to each other. Here you have two women who are, just by themselves, pretty evil, but when they’re together, their evilness is weirdly heartwarming.
Jeremy’s reemergence in the group was a bit of a shock. It seems like neither of these women would allow him anywhere near them, Given how protective Quinn is of Rachel, how will Jeremy be accepted into this “family”? Is it just that they may not have any other choice?
That, I think, is the only way he could’ve come back into their circle — not even their good graces. As we all know, what he did was unspeakable, and they shouldn’t let him back in. But that’s why I think this is such an interesting plot twist. As an audience member, you’re going to be thinking, “Holy shit. These people are so entangled in each other that they will seriously do anything for each other.” For Quinn and Rachel, that’s an endearing, fucked up thing — sorry to keep cursing.
[laughs] No, that’s OK.
It’s clearly going to affect them next season, and it’s clearly going to be a big part of what ends up happening with all of them. On top of that, they still need to do their jobs, be professional and carry on with their careers.
Quinn’s reaction to the “Everlasting” finale was pretty fascinating, in that she saw first-hand that true love can win out — literally against all odds. What was going through her head?
They spent so much of their time and their lives dedicated to creating moments that seem like they’re real, where people seem like they’re falling in love or or it seems like something is truly happening in front of their eyes. They all know they’re manipulating it, creating it and editing around it. But that moment was happening on live television. They can’t manipulate it. They haven’t even touched it. It definitely was a moment of realization — like a smack in the face, is the way I saw it. Quinn is hiding so much, and [she saw] that true love can happen.
But I think, again, she’s going to go to herself and say, “But not for me. Who does that happen for? Because I have yet to experience that.” Who does it happen to? The people that are open to it, and I just think Quinn isn’t open to it. I think she was with Booth. I think she thought that was it; that it was everything she deserved and everything she put on the show: the handsome prince who has all the money and sweeps you off your feet. So, once again, it smacks her in the face, and she’s like, “See? It’s not real. None of it’s real. Of course that wasn’t going to happen.”
Well, in that scene, what was so important was how she reacted to the news that she wasn’t able to have a baby. It wasn’t that she wanted kids, it’s that she wanted the choice. Big picture, what did that scene mean to you and to Quinn?
Those words — “I wanted a choice” — were, for me, the most important. There were a bunch of things for me [that were significant]: First of all, the pressure that women are under to conceive in general. I don’t think that’s talked about enough. I thought it was very important for Quinn to be the voice of, “Listen: Not every woman has to have kids!”
There’s a lot of women that probably shouldn’t or just don’t want to, and there’s so much pressure on women to get married, to have kids and all this stuff. I think all of us in life, no matter what it is — your career, your relationships, to have kids or not have kids — all we ever want in life is to be able to choose. So when your choice is taken away from you, that’s the worst thing that anybody can ever do to you, as a male or a female.
That was a hard scene for me. I’ve had friends who’ve been in that position: They never wanted kids, but then they decided to just see if they could [have kids]. Then they’re told they can’t, and they’re like, “Wait a minute. I didn’t say I didn’t want them. I just said I was unsure.” You know? So I’m really happy that moment is resonating with people — male and female — because I do think it goes beyond just having kids or not having kids.