After a dazzling ending of season two, the creators of Blissful are back with the season premiere and answers to all of the fans’ burning questions. When we left Jackson and Dani’s wedding from hell. Yet at the end of the season we flash-forwarded five months into the future and Dimitri Kavanugh was found dead and a funeral was happening. Now fans know Tony Delacroix committed suicide and that was the funeral Devin hinted at. We are sitting down with showrunners Kelly Zollo and Chris Coleman for all the tea in season three.
We have to start with the obvious? Why in the hell did you guys choose to kill off Tony? With the manner of how you chose to do it suicide? What is going on?
Chris: I think this is Kelly’s true season to shine. I feel like season one was a hybrid season where we both worked together. Season two was my solo season and I feel like I set up what’s all to come. However Kelly and my interpretation of what can happen and how it goes down are completely different. Kelly came to me with Tony’s suicide kicking off her season 3 and the mystery of what’s sort of going down. I lived for the mystery of it all. Tony’s suicide gave me a chance to flex in the opener so to speak. I had Selina trying to be strong, Ophelia hiding a dark past, Jeremiah arriving and a whole lot of other elements in play but Kelly will tell you why she chose to open with this mystery.
Kelly: I had plans from the beginning to off Tony for a variety of reasons one was that no one lives forever and we have always stated that we will not be afraid to have characters exit in one way or another. I chose suicide very specifically due to a lot of things like COVID and mental health but also due to the rest of the season and the Delacroix family in particular. We already had Dimitri’s body be found and I always felt that another funeral would be a good way to kick off season three. We have something big planned for that entire family for this season and this season alone and I really wanted the meat of the story to be about their legacy. Tony had made amends with all his children, he was in a good place with his daughter and had reunited with Ophelia so it made sense for his exit to be now to kick start the rest of their stories going forward Jeremiah plays a huge part of that as the season unravels.
With the arrival of Jeremiah Beecher can you both tell me what this means for the long term. We have Forbes Montgomery, Pierre LeClerq, and now it seems Jeremiah Beecher can you tell me what this means for the canvas.
Chris: I think we all know the show revolves around the Devonshire’s but this is the man with Gloria who set the history of this series into motion. Jeremiah arrival is a dangerous arrival I will say he has some major threat going forward. But the OG threats like Forbes and Pierre will not be backing down. Pierre is very connected to Dru while Forbes is in the background causing all sorts of hell but you missed one of the biggest inclusions. Charles Hessington is a vicious new threat on canvas so Devonshire’s, Delacroix’s, Fraiser’s, and every other clan will have their hands full.
Kelly: The thing about co-authoring a series is you have to be in communication with each other. We always anticipated that Jeremiah would come back to canvas due to how everything went down with DGI as readers found out in season 2. It was Gloria and Jeremiah scheming to take over the company and whispering in Lowell’s ear that led to his schism with Walter to begin with. We had it in our minds various ways that he would or wouldn’t return but decided that season 3 was the optimal time for that to happen. Forbes, Pierre and now Charles are always going to be our big bads on the series given their various connections but Jeremiah plays a vital role there now too.
Natasha’s lover has been revealed as Anderson Kincaid! When will we find out who pushed her down the stairs? Was this always planned and where does this leave Natasha and Chauncey in the future? Considering both Chauncey and Natasha have cheated or currently are cheating. What are we heading for?
Chris: We’ve known from get go that Anderson and Natasha were truly lovers and in love. We wanted to introduce Anderson last season and with his arrival the political scope of Blissful expands. He wants to be governor but that’s a Hessington legacy! So I can say Anderson arc going forward with Natasha and his ambitions wrap up together. As for all those questions all I can says is keep reading on what’s going to happen! The person who pushed Natasha that’s revealed a in the next few episodes. You are going to see who and why they did it. Chauncey is still very infatuated with Greer and I would say he never stopped caring for her. While we see the passion with Natasha and Anderson. I can say we will have some fun stories coming up for Chauncey/Natasha/Anderson/Cara/Brock/Greer. They are all sort of linked in an emotional game of hearts and who ends up on top is anyone’s guess.
Kelly: What I liked about this reveal is that Natasha has had a few lovers over the years and while she was blackmailed into giving up SandStar the real downfall so to speak is not getting to Anderson as her big catch. We’ve known for a while that it would be revealed that it was Anderson who was the father of her baby that she lost and that they would be having an affair, it’s not like her and Chauncey have ever been set up as a destined couple they’re simply marrying as part of a business arrangement on both their ends. They’re both still grieving the loss of her baby in different ways and the lives they have created in their minds to push down their true desires. Readers know after the opening that Chauncey is not done with Greer and Natasha is not done with Anderson, so how that goes forward is really interesting. With players like Brock and Cara in the wings or in between those couples it will be fun to see where it all lands.
Also Greer is confirmed pregnant by Chauncey! Correct?
Kelly: The baby is certainly not Brock’s, it really is Chauncey’s but the mystery is what Greer chooses to do with that information going forward.
Dimitri’s murder investigation is underway. We the fans know exactly who killed Dimitri however Jon seems like a dog with a bone for this case. With new officer Rebecca Nolan and the team of cops on Blissful what’s next?
Chris: The first question is vital I feel to the overall first half of season 3 if Kelly you don’t mind me saying. Dimitri Kavanaugh was a demented dark story but his reign of terror isn’t over. He’s haunting the women who he tormented because they sort of have one of the best cops on their asses. The secret is threatening to be uncovered and I love that Jon has been transformed. He’s no longer a friend to anyone and is a renegade. I also think the police are in danger because the mob is heavy this season. The story and danger around canvas all together another level of drama. I assure fans will love what’s coming up please remember Kelly’s history with mobular dramas. We will have some epic and amazing moments coming up.
Kelly: I wanted season 3 to pick up right with those women and the choice they made that night which included how they are coping and of course Jon is on the case with newcomer Rebecca. I think people have to remember that Jon was burned by a lot of people last season people he thought he trusted like Skye, Miranda, Cassie and Dani they didn’t tell him about Miles. He’s angry at those people at the time he lost with his son so it’s safe to say his emotions right now are driving things for him story wise. Regardless as there is no right or wrong when talking about how Miles was adopted Jon is hurt and is allowed to be human for a bit. Compared to his cool and calm nature we have seen. Of course the mystery of Dimitri really drives at least until the midway point of the season with both the women and police officers involved.
Chris: It’s something I am enjoying with Jon’s transformation. I enjoy playing him more dark and edgy imo than what fans are used to seeing with Jon. What makes this all the more interesting is the added threat of Ronan. The mob was dealt a dangerous blow at the end of season two but I assure you Ronan will come out swinging. His back has been pushed against the wall and to me this is when he’s the most dangerous.
We didn’t see some of our favorite couples, one in particular Jackson and Dani have always been the fans heart and joy. However we know a storm is coming with Dru being their nanny. What can you say about this couple and story coming up.
Chris: Kelly did one of the best stories for Jackson and Dani I’ve seen so far. She challenged them in every way imaginable while not ruining what makes Jani special. This isn’t going to be easy for the readers to read but I think this story will make them so much stronger. As for the story Dru is Dani’s half-sister and she’s based on the long lost vengeful siblings on soaps. So if she doesn’t do some unforgivable things then I think we failed as writers of this character if she doesn’t go harder and darker it’s not Blissful. With Dru already sending the Kincaid family reeling with the reveal of Steven. I can say Dru will do some unthinkable things throughout the season. I didn’t plan it, I will write it though. I’m assuming by the end of season 3 Dru might be one of the most loved to hated characters in websoaps. She is despicable and has some very gripping moments. Just buckle in Jani fans because a storm is coming.
Kelly: Erg um, buckle in would be a good statement there in all seriousness. I did sideline them in the opening mainly for the story to flow the rest of season. One of the things I really wanted to explore with them was that first year of marriage and being first time parents is not a walk in the park it’s just amplified up a bit. Dru was hired as their nanny last season, she’s already proven that she has what it takes to take out the Kincaid family, she felt rejected by Walter at the end of season 2 when she visited her grandmother, she’s bedded Ronan so of course her other brother and sister are not exempt from her and Pierre plotting their revenge. If Dru just came to town and announced who she was it would be a pretty lackluster story, but if she comes to town hellbent on revenge willing to do some shady stuff to achieve that, it makes that reveal so much more significant when the truth comes out.
Fans also got a glimmer of what’s going on with Jackie/Lowell/Tess triangle. We are shocked that Lowell married Tess instead of fixing his relationship with Jackie. What is this all about?
Chris: What I love about this story is we have an impossible situation. Someone knows they are dying and could you imagine what you would try to fix. Lowell said he’s going to fix what he did with his children and wife. That is his intention. The woman he considers his wife is Jackie and Tess is his last hurrah so to speak. Lowell got off on being powerful and making others feel weak. If he can hurt the woman who truly betrayed him the worst well that’s an added perk. You see Lowell hates Tess and she doesn’t know. Tess however is playing a long game and we are going to see how far she will stoop to win. This is a major part of season 3 and onward. The future of DGI and the legacy of Lowell Devonshire will be up for grab. It’s just who will win and who will end up on top.
Kelly: Lowell was really stuck in between a rock and a hard place where everything with Zerick was concerned but he was concerned about the past colliding with the present and in some weird way protecting his father’s legacy. He is not a fool and in season 2 he stated he is divorcing Jackie to spare her pain, which is honorable. His marriage to Tess while shocking is really his last stand in a way to hurt someone back that truly hurt him the most he is not a dumb man. Tess knows she is on borrowed time when it comes to her entire marriage and life with Lowell, she has Forbes and Pierre breathing down her neck over it as well. I can’t reveal too much more but Tess has always vowed to do whatever it takes to secure DGI for herself as the true Mrs. Devonshire.
Brenda and David’s interaction was amazing because we are once again facing that another legacy character might be dying? Why is Brenda sick?
Chris: Well Brenda literally said she isn’t dying and I believe her! I can’t say what’s next for Brenda because it would be a revealing story but Brenda isn’t planning on going anywhere and will do anything to make sure of that. She’s selfish and strong because she isn’t like Tony or Lowell where she doesn’t have a chance. Or doesn’t feel like living any longer this time she sees a way out of death’s door. I can say Brenda illness will tie directly into the freight train that is Dru Price aka her unknown daughter with Walter. Brenda and Dru relationship is going to get deliciously wicked coming up. While Brenda has all but blamed Lowell, is it more to Dru/Kendall adoption? We will answer all those questions and more.
Kelly: I kinda loved the shock of this scene both when I was planning and writing it we’ve hinted for a few seasons now that Brenda is a alcoholic period and has never sought help for it. I wanted this reality situation for her that her drinking has led to her being in liver failure and her abrasiveness with David telling him what she would or wouldn’t do was a classic Brenda move. David has been pretty distracted with Belle and getting a bit too cushy at St. Christophers and Brenda let it be known he either gets her a liver transplant or that could be in jeopardy and Jayden would take over his position Brenda is wanting to live to see out her days with her children and her grandchildren in Wyatt, Poppy and new grandson in Fox as well so I don’t expect her to go down without a true fight.
What makes you the most proud about season three versus the other two seasons of the series?
Chris: I think this season above all others has finally set up all the power players so it’s all about the story. The set up is done. It’s over, it’s all about the story. I love how Kelly took all the groundwork we put into season 2 and really took off running. I think this season is hearty and has so many dark undertones. It has the signature Blissful flavor but with all Kelly’s cerebral tones and the way she approaches things have such powerful gravitas to it. It feels almost cinematic even when you are reading. I love the plans and how it all plays out. We really took some of the most beloved soap opera tropes and to me turned it into high drama.
Kelly: I think for me anyway I’m really proud that we planned and resolved a murder mystery without dragging things out I know looking back one of the things we wanted to improve on was that. You can still have a murder mystery, a who did it without it lasting for over 20 episodes with both Steven and Dante, and not have it drag a season along, I do think we learned from that this time. Yes there is a mystery to unravel for the police but it flows naturally and really sets off the next arcs for all those characters. I also feel for me I am a more build and build to a big explosion so to speak I’ve always planned like that so for me it was super fun to take Blissful in that direction this season with so many different characters and stories.
Anything else you want to discuss?
Chris: This by far is the season we’ve been waiting for. Fans will get one of the most electric seasons. It is an understatement everything will change going forward. This season will have drama, romance, pain, and loss. I want fans to be ready because characters won’t make, and relationships won’t survive. That’s all I’m saying. There’s a lot of story in season 3 and I think fans will be so in love with this season and what we’ve cooked up. I can say continue to watch the young adults in season 3. It’s really fun what Aspen/Rory/Khalil/Yasmine/Jayden et all are all up to. I think Kelly really put her foot into this element. I also will say the flashbacks are prevalent throughout the season. Each one enhances the story for readers.
Kelly: Pay attention to the flashbacks there are Easter eggs galore in there and really fill in the blanks to add to the current stories that are happening in the present with the characters. Everything happens on Blissful for a reason, every scene really counts to the next step and I will say that something fans will be wondering for a while will finally be answered in the final scenes of the season. I can’t say to much more per say but every single main family on canvas is affected in some way by the last few episodes whether it be the Devonshire’s or the Fraiser’s, to the Delacroix’s and the Harrison’s things are not the same and I can already say 4 is off to be a bang start too.