Watch out, Nicky Shen. Kung Fu’s baddest guardian is sticking around permanently next season.
Yvonne Chapman, who plays the villainous Zhilan, has been upgraded to a series regular for Season 2, our sister site Deadline reports.
Season 1 saw Zhilan murder Nicky’s mentor (and Zhilan’s big sister) Pei-Ling (Vanessa Kai), jumpstarting an emotional rivalry that culminated in an intense showdown between both women. Nicky defeated Zhilan after deciding to release Biange back to the earth rather than destroy it or wield the ancient Sword of Liang Daiyu, and her murderous archnemisis was last seen being carted away in handcuffs.
With a Biange blossom popping up in San Francisco — a sign that Biange energy is nearby — and corrupt investor Russell Tan hiding Nicky’s long-lost cousin as part of a master plan, it’s safe to say there’s even more trouble ahead for the Shens next season.
It’s unclear how Zhilan will play into that — she’s facing significant jailtime for murder — but Olivia Liang, who plays the titular heroine, has a few pitches.
“I think it would be so cool to see Nicky go up against this bad person, and the only person that can help is Zhilan,” Liang previously mused to TVLine. “We visit her in her jail cell, and she’s still as fabulous as ever, and she probably has some of the wards under her spell. I think that would be really fun.”
In addition to Chapman and Liang, Kung Fu also stars Eddie Liu as Nicky’s friend-turned-boyfriend Henry, Shannon Dang as Nicky’s computer whiz sister Althea Shen, Jon Prasida as Nicky’s pre-med brother Ryan Shen, Gavin Stenhouse as Nicky’s ex-boyfriend Evan, Tzi Ma as Nicky’s father Jin Shen and Kheng Hua Tan as Nicky’s mother Mei-Li Shen.