Jean Smart as Deborah Vance and Hannah Einbinder as Ava Daniels in Hacks
(HBO)

New ‘Hacks’ Trailer Promises More Snappy Dialogue and Wit in Season 3

If funny zingers are your thing—and let’s face it, you’re reading this article, so they probably are—you’ll be happy to hear that the HBO comedy Hacks is coming back for a third season this spring. Fans of Jean Smart’s specific brand of crusty diva, rejoice!

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The first two seasons of Hacks focused on building the relationship between Smart’s aging comedian Deborah Vance and Ava (Hannah Einbinder), a 25-year-old struggling comedy writer. Season 1 premiered in May 2021 with ten episodes, and season 2 offered eight more episodes in May 2022. Just two weeks after the season 2 finale aired, Max announced they had renewed the show for a third season.

A critical darling and an instant fan favorite, the production was nominated for dozens of awards. Smart took home an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for two years in a row for the first two seasons. In 2022, Smart also won a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series, and the show won a Best Television Series Golden Globe. Will they snag some more trophies for season 3? We can’t wait to find out.

Cast and crew details

In addition to Smart and Einbinder, Carl Clemons-Hopkins stars as Marcus, Deborah’s friend and business manager. Paul W. Downs of Broad City shows his humor chops once more as Deborah’s agent, Jimmy LuSaque. Other recurring cast members include Kaitlin Olson, Christopher McDonald, Jane Adams, Poppy Liu, Laurie Metcalf, Martha Kelly, Ming-Na Wen and Susie Essman. Margaret Cho and Devon Sawa also guest starred during season 2.

Speaking of Broad City … there’s a reason Ava’s depiction of a world-weary millennial is so spot-on. Downs is one of the Hacks writers and showrunners, along with fellow Broad City alumni Lucia Aniello and Jen Statsky. These writers bring the snappy dialog to Hacks, giving us lines like, “I was just wondering why you were dressed as Rachel Maddow’s mechanic,” and a personal favorite:

“When I’m gone, didn’t you say you wanted to get your mustache waxed?”
“No …?”
“Oh. Guess I just thought it.”

What will happen in season 3?

At the end of the second season, Ava and Deborah seemingly parted ways as friends. Deborah even dropped her lawsuit against Ava, and the comedian’s career is on an upswing thanks to the success of her new comedy special on QVC. After publicly thanking Ava for her work on the special, Deborah fires her to force the younger woman to work on developing her own career.

Our best guess is that the story will focus on Deborah riding the high of her successful special, along with her constant scrabble to stay relevant. Ava will likely do more work in Los Angeles, perhaps adding some more clients (and fun guest stars) to her roster but almost certainly returning to help Deborah, since that’s where the magic of the show truly lies. We’ll also see more development of Marcus and Johnny; the latter will be starting his own agency with help from his uber-annoying but undeniably loyal assistant, Kaya (Megan Statler).

When and where can we watch?

On March 1, 2023 HBO announced that season 3 of Hacks will premiere on May 2! They also dropped an official trailer, and we love seeing Deborah and Ava back in action!

If the trailer is any indication, this season promises even more generational sparring than ever, and we are here for it! Time to brush up on our snarky comebacks ahead of season 3—streaming the first two seasons on Max seems like a good place to start.

(featured image: HBO)


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Beverly Jenkins
Beverly Jenkins (she/her) is a contributing writer for The Mary Sue. She writes about pop culture, entertainment, and web memes, and has published a book or a funny day-to-day desk calendar about web humor every year for a decade. When not writing, she's listening to audiobooks or watching streaming movies under a pile of her very loved (spoiled) pets.