Will Trent EPs on [Spoiler]’s Death, That Shocking Arrest and Will’s Whereabouts Heading Into Season 3

There’s no turning back now. ABC‘s Will Trent took a grenade to Will and Angie’s relationship in Tuesday’s Season 2 finale, with Will placing Angie under arrest for tampering with evidence, and making false statements in violation of oath of office in the case surrounding the death of Lenny Broussard.

The game-changing hour revealed that Crystal was the serial killer targeting sex offenders across Georgia. Once Angie connected the dots and confronted Crystal, the troubled teen made a run for it, tripped, fell head first into a rock and died. Afterward, Angie filled Will and Faith in on her connection to Crystal, but stopped short of revealing that it was Crystal who killed Lenny. Will figured it out on his own, then received confirmation from Crystal’s mom.

Before he placed Angie under arrest, Will imagined an alternate timeline where he and Angie get married and start their life together. What followed was a montage of all of life’s big milestones that Will would be giving up once he arrested the love of his life. Heartbroken, Will returned home, packed a bag and left town with Betty. When Amanda arrived at his house, he was already gone, having left Nico enough money to cover utilities in his absence.

Below, co-showrunners Liz Heldens and Daniel Thomsen break down the Season 2 finale and offer early intel on Will Trent Season 3, which will consist of 18 episodes — its longest season yet! — and enjoy an uninterrupted run once it returns to ABC in early 2025.

TVLINE | Did you always intend for the Lenny Broussard cover-up to blow up in Angie’s face?
HELDENS | Kath Lingenfelter, who co-wrote this episode with me, had the idea at the very end of last season. She said it, and it was one of those things where the room went silent. But the more we thought about it, it just seemed so great because you really understand where everyone is coming from. You understand that Angie really thought that she was making the best of a horrible situation when she took the blame for Crystal killing Lenny, and trying to prevent that girl’s life from being ruined. This season, she developed a nice relationship with Crystal, and to understand that she is the architect of, whether or not she meant [for this to happen], this girl is turning into a monster, just seemed like really great drama that puts Angie and Will on opposite sides.

TVLINE | Does Will’s decision to place Angie under arrest pretty much seal their fate as a couple? Is this relationship done for good?
HELDENS | I mean, I’ve never arrested a romantic partner before, but it does seem pretty hard to come back from. [Laughs]

TVLINE | Before Angie puts the pieces together and realizes that Crystal is the killer, she speaks to Franklin about how her relationship with Will has finally given her a reason to stay sober. Should we be worried about Angie maintaining her sobriety now that she’s lost Will?
THOMSEN | You should definitely worry. Since the pilot, when we flirted with the idea that Angie had to put a fentanyl patch on as part of the case, and whether that was going to knock her off the wagon, we’ve spent a lot of time [in the writers’ room] debating when and if she should fall off. What we’ve decided is that we don’t want to just use it as a cheap plot twist. We don’t want to do the expected thing. We’re always challenging ourselves to figure out a bigger and better and more horrific reason for her to fall off, and I would say that this finale presents a pretty big one.

TVLINE | What about Angie’s future as a cop? Assuming she doesn’t wind up behind bars, is accepting Amanda’s offer to come work at the GBI a possibility anymore? Can she even rejoin the APD? Or will she have to find other work, perhaps as a P.I.?
HELDENS | We’ve talked about that, and we’ve talked about a path back. Everything is on the table now. We have to look at the ecosystem of the show. But we are big, big, big Erika Christensen fans over here. I love watching her, and personally I would follow [Angie] wherever she went.

TVLINE | Let’s talk about the flash-forward, which I guess is less of a flash-forward and more of a “What could have been….” What was the thinking behind showing Will and Angie’s future together, only to rip it away?
THOMSEN | It’s the most dramatic way to show the audience what Will was giving up. Throughout the series, we’ve really put an emphasis on Will’s ethical guidelines — they’re like his North Star — and this is the most gut-wrenching situation he could find himself in.
HELDENS | The other thing about Will is that he’s not a character that expresses a lot of desires. He doesn’t ask for things, in general. He’s an inward character. We find ways, as much as we possibly can, to get out his desires — he talks to his mother, who’s not really there; he talks to Betty; he uses the tape recorder — but he has never been a character who has dared to hope for this wonderful, beautiful, magical, normal life. This season, with the way Uncle Antonio helped him forgive himself [in Episode 8], I think he’s starting to shift, to be in a position to want things, and to want a future, and to want some scope in his life. He’s just not a character who is going to look at another character and say, “I really want to have a family with you someday.” You have to look at his face and project what he might want. This is a glimpse into what his dreams are, and I thought it would be a powerful way to show his inner wishes.

TVLINE | Will packs a bag and leaves town. What are the chances he left for Puerto Rico, to visit Antonio?
THOMSEN | I mean, it’s definitely on our board for options. No decisions have been made yet, but if you’re ranking places that Will would want to go, that’s definitely up there.

TVLINE | I assume we’ll learn where Will has gone fairly early into the Season 3 premiere. But what about Angie? Can we expect to see her in prison for awhile? Potentially a long, drawn out trial?
THOMSEN | One of the things that I’m very interested in examining is that, in real life, the way that cops go through the judicial system is different from normal people, especially when there’s righteous behavior involved. I think we want to spend some time and try and figure out what this would look like for somebody [like Angie] who was in this kind of situation [involving Lenny]. I mean, Liz, you can tell me if I’m wrong, but I don’t know that it would be like a long court trial. That’s probably not the area that we want to mine. But I think that this is going to mark a very significant departure in Angie’s life.
HELDENS | Yeah, I agree with that… I think that might be a different show [if we put her on trial], but we’re going to see what the consequences are for her.

TVLINE | With Will and Angie on a break, perhaps even a permanent one, that leaves an opening in Will’s love life. What are the chances that opening is filled by Sara Linton at some point in Season 3?
HELDENS | I think that the door is open for someone new to come into his life. We have to talk about it, and we have to talk about it with ABC — like, there’s a logistical question here: Do we want to bring in the endgame now? Or is it interesting to find somebody [else for now]? We have to be careful about that. We have to be careful about what that does to the ecosystem of the show. We need to be thoughtful about that.
THOMSEN | There are two things to consider, one is that Sara Linton is a great character for television, right? So to just have her come into our show in a moment where Will needs a romantic interest, I feel like both [Liz and I] spend time chewing on this idea that maybe there is a bigger role for Sara. But also, we both kind of know that she’s the endgame for Will in the books. At this point in Will’s life, I don’t know if he’s ready for that, and there are so many opportunities for exploration in other directions.

TVLINE | Have there been discussions about a Sara Linton spinoff?
HELDENS | Certainly, the Grant County books are great IP. I think everybody knows that. So we’re just thinking about the best, right thing to do. I don’t want to keep saying that everything is on the table — obviously, not everything is on the table — but we just don’t know yet. We have to be really thoughtful about that.

TVLINE | Ormewood and soon-to-be ex-wife Gina are heading into a potentially vicious custody battle. Do you intend to have that play out on screen, or might that be something that’s resolved by the time we pick up in Season 3?
HELDENS | We have to see how that feels. This season was about Michael really stepping up as a father, becoming close to his kids, and trying to manage his demons, and that relationship with his children was hard won. He worked worked really hard to figure out how to manage the household by himself. His kids matter very much to him, and so they matter to us and we’re interested in that story, so we’ll have to see. But both the actors that play his children are great, and it brings out a really, really nice side of him.

TVLINE | The only character who ends this season on a positive note is Faith, who fully commits to boyfriend Luke. Tell me a bit about what you like about those two together and what it brings out in Faith.
THOMSEN | One of the things that I like the most about the Faith/Luke relationship is that we wanted it to show Faith coming to understand that she’s a catch. Luke is a guy who is making overtures, and he’s being romantic, and I think that she’s kind of taken by surprise in the beginning. It makes her blossom a little bit. What’s really interesting is seeing her then start to examine, “OK if I want this guy to be my partner, what else goes into being in a relationship?” Because she’s been a parent from such a young age, she hasn’t really had that true romantic partnership. I think this season was about laying a foundation that feels romantic and chemical and fun for her — something that opens up a side of life that has been neglected for her.

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