At the end of “Hemlock Grove” Season 1, Roman Godfrey finally transformed into an upir. According to star Bill Skarsgard, fans can expect him to be a changed man when Season 1 begins.
“Roman, on his 18th birthday, he became the majority shareholder of his company, and also there’s part of him having these needs or hungers and how he’s dealing with that,” he tells Zap2it
during an interview conducted while he was filming episode 3. “It’s really fun to play. Everything that he’s kind of fighting against from Season 1 is what he’s realizing he really is now.”
A primary change for Roman will be the difference in his relationship between him and his mother Olivia (Famke Janssen). In the Season 1 finale, Roman drained her of her blood to complete his upir transformation, seemingly killing her. But Olivia is far from dead when Season 2 premieres.
While Zap2it was on the set of “Hemlock Grove” in October 2013, Skarsgard and Janssen were shooting a scene where Olivia was trying to give Roman advice about how to deal with his hunger. Though she is trying to take on a mentorship role, it’s very clear that the connection between the mother and son has changed.
“Roman really doesn’t want anything to do with his mother. That dynamic has changed completely,” Skarsgard says, noting that the shift goes both ways. “I think she feels betrayed and sad because she lost her son in a way [when he tried to kill her].”
At the same time, Olivia is the person with the most answers for Roman as he goes through his vampiric transformation. “She’s the only one who Roman knows her that has the same condition or whatever, so she has also answers about who he is — or what he is, rather — so there’s probably things to explore there throughout the season as well,” Skarsgard teases.
The upir mythology will come into the forefront in Season 2 in the same way the werewolf mythology was explored in Season 1, but expect it to be a slow burn. By episode 3, Skarsgard still didn’t know much about the creatures he was playing.
“I think the audience wants and needs to know more about what they are and how they work,” he says. “You will find out much more about the upir than Season 1.” Skarsgard also acknowledges that there’s a possibility of other upir being introduced later in the series.
“There’s a lot of things that have changed, not only in Roman but in the town as a whole as well,” Skarsgard says of the jump in Season 1 to Season 2.”It’s not healthy to fight who you are. You can’t fight who you are. You have to accept it, right? I don’t know where the writers will take it, but it’s one of those things where it’s impossible to deny what you are.”
“Hemlock Grove” Season 2 premieres in its entirety Friday, July 11 on Netflix.