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INTERVIEW: Nora and Lilla Zuckerman Tease ‘Poker Face’ And What Will Bring Fans to Each Episode

Natasha Lyonne in Pokerface

Poker Face has become my latest obsession. The series, created by Rian Johnson and starring Natasha Lyonne, takes us into the world of Charlie Cale (Lyonne) as she explores all the “bullshit” around her. In a new take on the “how-catch-ems” with a Columbo vibe, the series is exactly the kind of mystery show we were missing. And it works because of Lyonne’s charm, Johnson’s ability to weave a mystery, and the writing power of Nora and Lilla Zuckerman.

The two, who serve as showrunners, clearly love the series and Charlie Cale. Getting to talk with them for the premiere of Poker Face was a delight! And I did have to admit my status as a Rian Johnson fangirl by displaying all my Knives Out merch that I accidentally wore. But the two talked about the nature of the show and their worries for what would bring the audience back each episode. But they knew that people would tune in for Lyonne as Charlie.

“I think that people are gonna tune in because they wanna hang out with Natasha,” Lilla Zuckerman said about the series. “They wanna hang out with Charlie Cale. She is so lovely, she’s so funny. She’s so laid back. And I think that that is what is gonna keep people coming back. We did face a little bit of resistance in terms of it just being standalone is not very serialized storytelling, and it doesn’t end with a cliffhanger every week. And so the question gets raised ‘well, why are people gonna tune in week after week?’ And I’m like, ‘because it’s really good and because you’re gonna wanna hang out with Charlie. And you’re gonna wanna see what happens next. And you want to go on this ride with her. You wanna see where she’s gonna park that Barracuda next and what kind of trouble she’s gonna get into.’ And that the audience is gonna find it very pleasurable to sit down and watch an episode that has beginning a middle and a really satisfying end.”

For Nora Zuckerman, she credits what will bring audiences back each episode to the feeling of nostalgia for the genre. “I feel like just because we don’t see this type of storytelling often doesn’t mean there’s not a love for it,” she said. “I think Rian is very good at finding those niches of like, ‘remember how excited we were about this, these types of movies and how come they don’t make ’em anymore? Oh, I’ll do it myself.’ You know? And I think that this show sort of does the same thing.”

You can see our full conversation here:

The first 4 episodes of Poker Face hit Peacock on January 26th and I can’t wait to talk to everyone about it. It really is that good.

(featured image: Peacock)

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Resident Spider-Man expert, official Leslie Knope, actually Yelena Belova. Wanda Maximoff has never done anything wrong in her life. New York writer with a passion for all things nerdy. Yes, she has a Pedro Pascal podcast.