Post Mortems

Outer Banks EPs: How That Gigantic Finale Twist Will 'Excavate' the Show's Mythology in a Potential Season 3


Warning: This post contains a major spoiler from Outer Banks‘ Season 2 finale. 

Just when it seemed like Outer Banks‘ third season was going to end on a visual of the Pogues living their best — if stranded — lives on a deserted Caribbean beach, the Netflix series’ action moved to Barbados to reveal something many fans had predicted since the show’s start: John B’s dad, Big John, is alive.

Executive producers Jonas Pate and Josh Pate tell TVLine that Big John’s resurrection wasn’t always a sure thing — even as recently as when they were plotting out the season.

“We knew we had that card. We didn’t know that we would play it for sure, but around the sixth or seventh episode, when we were writing this year, we started to realize maybe we could do that,” Jonas Pate says.

outer-banks-season-3-big-john-alive-netflixHe adds that the chaos of Episode 10 — in which John B, Sarah, Kiara, Pope, JJ and Cleo attempt to take over a cargo ship and barely escape with their lives — was the best kind of distraction, one that would leave audiences “really on the wrong foot.”

Josh Pate adds: “We started to get excited about what we could do in a potential Season 3 if he were back.”

Viewers learn about Big John’s existence when Carla Limbrey, the series’ new villain played by Lost alum Elizabeth Mitchell, arrives in Barbados with a letter bearing the Royal Merchant insignia. She goes to a home where a man informs her that “he” isn’t doing well. And when we find out who the “he” in question is, it’s John B’s presumed-dead father, played by Constantine‘s Charles Halford. (Read a full recap here.)

outer-banks-season-3-big-john-alive-netflixTheir conversation is about the shroud that she hoped to find in the Cross of Santo Domingo, the ancient cloth that allegedly has healing powers. (Maybe that’s how Big John survived his injuries from Ward’s attack?) “I can help you,” he tells her. “But you have to help my son.”

So is Limbrey and Routledge Sr.’s interaction leading to a potential enemy-of-my-gold-hungry-enemy-is-my-friend situation? The pair have worked together before, Jonas Pate points out. And they both clearly hate Ward Cameron. “It’s laid in there. There are a few mentions throughout the season about Limbrey. Like, Limbrey has been aligned with Big John in the past, so it’s definitely a likely way we will go,” he says, quickly adding that he and the other EPs don’t have a detailed “master plan” for Season 3 yet.

However, “The treasure-hunt aspect of the show is something that we see as important and integral to the show,” Josh Pate explains. And bringing him back, we realized maybe there was a way to [combine] these different treasures that they’re going after into a larger mythology.”

He adds: “We thought that Big John’s return would be a way we could excavate some of that.”

What did you think of Big John’s revival? And how do you think it will play out in a potential Season 3? Hit the comments and let us know!