With the season two premiere of Netflix’s Emmy-winning series Hemlock Grove less than two weeks away, Nerdist spoke with star Landon Liboiron on location in Toronto about the changes to the series, what his character Peter is up to, and what fans can expect from a new and improved Hemlock Grove.
For those who watched the traumatic events of season one unfold, what would bring Liboiron’s Peter Rumancek back to Hemlock Grove in the first place? The actor explained, “The main thing that brought him back was a situation with his Mom [Lili Taylor]. He basically had no choice. It was kind of a life and death decision to come back. There’s also a force unbeknownst to him that keeps pulling him back.” He continued, “The thing with Peter in season two is that it’s a cluster of one thing after another that he’s trying to deal with. He hardly sleeps. He’s just dealing with one thing after another. It’s kind of a juggling ball act of responsibilities and challenges.”
From everything we heard on the set and since the visit, season two of Hemlock is upping the ante when it comes to action, gore, and guts. Liboiron put it like this, “If they used a slingshot last year they’re using a catapult this year. They really amped up the fun stuff,” adding later, “[Season two is] definitely more action packed…One thing after another. It’s less about dialogue and more about the event. S**t hits the fan. Definitely.”
Another difference between season one and two was the luxury of having Brian McGreevy’s novel to work from, which Liboiron took advantage of. “It was a gift to have the book last year. To know the trajectory and overall plot. Whereas this year, I have no idea at all. It changes. Sometimes you can make a choice and the next episode contradicts that choice. It’s a different way of filming, but it’s very exciting because you don’t know what’s coming. You don’t know who’s going to die, you don’t know who’s going to live, you don’t know who’s going to be introduced and what these new characters are doing because you don’t know their story. It is exciting as well. ”
Season one concluded with Roman (played by Bill Skarsgård) discovering his otherworldly gift while Peter has always known about his own. What impact does Liboiron see this having on their friendship? “[T]hat’s the difference between Roman and Peter in the first season. Peter is very at peace with who he is. The werewolf aspect of Peter’s character, he grew up with that just as much as he did being a gypsy. And with Nikolai teaching him how to hunt, it’s very much a spiritual thing. When he met Roman, Roman didn’t know he was a upier, but Peter sensed that about him so Peter had one up on him. Now that Roman knows he’s a upier the contrast is that, I guess, you can say Peter is struggling with his werewolf-ness in season two more than in season one. He’s a little more of a sore tooth.”
Liboiron continued, “I describe season one as a cocktail party for the uninvited. When you throw all of these misfits together it’s really enlightening for them. It’s really nice. ‘Oh, you’re a freak too!’ is that kind of unexplainable build, it’s love. It’s a form of love and understanding a wavelength no one else is a part of. That’s kind of what they had in season one. And the interesting thing about season two is that they’re both struggling with their inner demons. The wavelength starts wobbling a little bit.”
Season two of Hemlock Grove starring Famke Janssen, Bill Skarsgård, Landon Liboiron, Dougray Scott, Joel de la Fuente, Tiio Horn, Madeline Brewer and Madeleine Martin as Shelley, premieres with ten episodes only on Netflix Friday, July 11th at 12:01 AM PT.