Tricia Helfer on Mom in LUCIFER S2: “There’s more to her agenda”
At the end of LUCIFER’s Season 2 premiere, after Luci spent the episode looking for dear old escaped-from-Hell Mummy, assuming she was sending him message after message about the havoc she intends to rain down on him, a battered Tricia Helfer crawled into his loft and collapsed in his arms.
When the show returns in two weeks (no new ‘sode against the Pres. debate), we’ll learn more about where she’s been, what she’s thinking, and what comes next. To get a bit of a jump on those questions, I spent some time with Tricia, talking about joining the show, working with this cast, and where Mom’s head might be.
One of the questions that I had. Were you a fan of the show? Did you know the guys involved? What was it about Lucifer that kind of got you involved coming into Season 2?
I was intrigued by the pilot script. I’d actually read it. I wanted to try and get in on it because I thought it was a really interesting, fun script but I wasn’t available. I was under hold with ASCENSION still. I wasn’t even available to try. From that, I hadn’t watched the series right away, but then I caught up with it on “binging,” as they say. I thought it was just a really fun, well done show. It’s a show that has a specific tone and I remembered that from reading the pilot. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. With LUCIFER, I think they just really found the right tone. I was surprised at how funny it was. That’s been a real pleasure for me, is getting to do a show that … There’s a lot of humor in it. There’s a lot of I’m reading the script and I’m laughing out loud.
Yet, you’re also dealing with … Especially with the introduction of my character, especially for me and my boys (laughs), dealing with dysfunctional family drama, and mother issues, and father issues, and brotherly issues, and … It’s been a lot of fun getting to play a very well-rounded, layered character, which I think is going to surprise the fans. She’s certainly been set up as this evil character coming in.
The boys have had to obviously deal with dysfunction on their own together, dealing with dad, and dealing together. How does Mom impact their relationship?
With the arrival of Mom, definitely impacts Amenadiel and Lucifer and their relationship together because, at first, they think they have to band together against her. We see that, not only at the end of Season 1, the very end, but also the opener. We pick up with that and their concern about mom coming in. From there, their recollection is they know that mom has a strong dislike for humanity, so they’re concerned not only about … She’s also been held in. She was banished down to Hell and held there for a very long time by Lucifer, who never once came to speak to her. There are, of course, concerns from their own side, but they’re also concerned what she might do to humans down in Los Angeles.
When you meet her, you quickly realize there’s a lot more to her agenda. She certainly does have an agenda, but she’s also, at the end of the day, a loving mother who wants to be with her sons, and wants to clear the air, and wants to … There’s been a lot of miscommunication between them. There’s been a lot of things that the boys think happened that actually happened differently. Sometimes parents maybe shield the truth from kids. There has definitely been some miscommunication, so Mom is wanting to set things right, but she also has her own agenda. That will be revealed as the episodes go along.
It’s so interesting to me that this is not necessarily a show rooted in realism with Lucifer and Amenadiel,
But you can relate to these characters on such a basic level that everybody has that mother issue or brother issue. It’s so relatable. That’s one of the things that stands out for me about the show.
Absolutely. That’s what I talked with Tom (Ellis) and D.B. (Woodside) about as well. They’ve been happy with the introduction of the mom character because it’s given them, also, an opportunity to show different sides, and for Lucifer to show a vulnerability that he doesn’t get to have around most other characters, because he’s dealing with his mother and with issues. We almost see Lucifer as a lost little boy at some times in the second season. It’s been … We’ve got to laugh that we’re talking about celestial beings here and I’m God’s ex-wife. I’m like the supreme goddess, but yet I’m getting hurt because my sons snubbed me or whatever it is. It is fun to have that kind of dichotomy.
Do you spend the majority of your time with Tom and D.B. or do you get to branch out, interact with Trixie and Chloe? Do you get to interact with everybody?
I will get to interact with everybody, but without giving too much away, predominately in the beginning, the first 2 episodes, the first part of the season, I am dealing with more my sons. There’s definitely a lot of history there to deal with, and also the fact that Mom is in a human form for the first time, and Mom has a strong dislike for humanity. The fact that she’s stuck in an “earthly skin sack,” as she calls it, certainly leads to some comedy. She’s dealing with … Her main focus is obviously her sons, and then also having to deal with the immediacy of this situation of her being in a human form.
As the season goes on, yes, she will end up having dealings with the other characters in the show as well. Maze and mom also have … They have a very strong history and a dislike for one another. She interacts with Maze in the first part of the season as well.
Are you people asking you why is this a show I should be watching? What is it about Lucifer that you think will draw me in? Is there something you’re saying or an answer you have for people about why this is a show for everybody?
I find it a very well-rounded show. There’s not a lot on TV like it right now, where you got the comedy, you’ve got the light-hearted fun, the entertainment. You’ve also got this dysfunctional family drama. Shows like this, there’s a specific … Every show has a specific tone. There’s certainly shows that have more of a specific tone than just your regular cop procedural or something like that, right? Or your regular sitcom or something. Sometimes they get it right, and sometimes they don’t. It’s that unknown quantity that you’re always aiming for, and striving for, and think you’re getting it, but then sometimes it just doesn’t work out.
I think with Lucifer, it’s one of those times that it just worked out. The tone just works. We take, as Tom has said in some of the stuff we’ve done together in terms of interviews and stuff, I think he said it well with we take the job seriously and we take the work seriously, but we don’t take ourselves too seriously. So we have fun while we’re shooting. It’s a really good group of people that gets along really well and is like a family. We take the job seriously, but at the same time we enjoy it. Maybe some of that is what’s showing through and showed through in the first season of … They’re really enjoying themselves and having fun doing it, and I think that translates. If you’re looking for just a really fun show that also hits them in the heart every once in a while, then they should check it out.
I’ve gotten the chance, you say, from the top down, like talking to Joe and Ildy and the writers, they love the material. They love what they’re writing. You guys love what you’re getting. You can sense that, even in just the few ways you interact, that everybody loves what they’re working on.
Yeah. It really has been … Coming into the show at the end of second season, like myself and Aimee Garcia, it’s not always the seamless transition where you integrate new characters. We both came in and felt extremely welcomed and like immediately part of the group. They kind of welcomed us with open arms, or wings I guess, so that’s nice for the 2 newbies coming in as well. But definitely everybody has fun and every time a writer … Every episode when the writer’s up on set … The writers room is really a great group of people as well. It helps when you enjoy what you’re working on.
LUCIFER airs Mondays at 9/8c on FOX