If you love yourself some Animal Kingdom, you’ve likely known for a while that Emily Deschanel is going to be a big part of season 4. If you loved her on Bones, you’re probably even more excited! This is one of her first major television roles since the end of the Fox series and it’s on a show that is far and away different. With Bones, you knew that the crew at the Jeffersonian were good people. They made mistakes, but their hearts were the size of that institution and they would do everything that they could to get justice. They were determined and steely-eyed. (If you’re wondering, we did use “steely-eyed” because of how it sounds like Seeley Booth.)
On Animal Kingdom, you’re going to be hard-pressed to find any angels. In this kingdom, you’re surrounded by predators. Smurf is a lioness, J is a viper, and there are various other carnivorous creatures roaming the wild. Could Emily be a shark, a grizzly bear, or any other dangerous threat within this ecosystem? We almost how that she is.
What we know about Deschanel’s character right now is this: She is Angela, the former best friend of Pope’s deceased twin sister Julia. She’s a recovering junkie who is doing her best to infiltrate the Cody family’s metaphorical compound. She wants in with their good graces, and she’s scrappy and willing to manipulate and fight her way to getting what she wants. You could certainly call her a snake, with the way in which she’s going to try to charm Pope and work to get people on her side before inevitably trying to stab them in the back.
Is this the sort of character who has Big Bad upside? It’s hard for a someone who slithers to be queen of the jungle, but also far from impossible. For a character like Angela, what we’d watch out for moving into season 4 is her capacity to turn family members on each other. She doesn’t strike us as the sort of stable person who is going to be able to go into that house and throw a Molotov cocktail; she’s going to have to be subtle, strategic, and work to win over some family members while destroying others. If she can turn Pope against J, and then J further against Smurf, she can constrict her opponents one by one. It’s hard to see her coming out on top in advance — we are talking here about a recurring cast star — but we want to see J shake. We want to see Smurf cower. In the presence of good guys a la Bones, a show like Animal Kingdom needs bad guys to tackle other bad guys … or at least make some people J feel a little more human. Deprive them of some of that animal instinct.
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Alas, you will probably have to wait until late spring, at the earliest, to see Angela’s role in this twisted story. We know Deschanel’s a gifted performer, and we hope that this talent, coupled with the qualities and possibilities described here, make you all the more excited for this formidable foe to be present in season 4.
Have you missed our piece on season 4 premiere possibilities?
If so, visit the link here to see our breakdown of that very subject! Also, share in the comments if you want to see Emily Deschanel be the Big Bad on Animal Kingdom season 4! (Photo: TNT.)