Lucy Lawless' 'Salem' Season 2 Character Is Complicated, Says The Actress & Co-Creator Adam Simon
No matter how invested you were in Season 1 of WGN America's Salem, the addition of Xena herself Lucy Lawless in Salem Season 2 has to at least pique your interest. Lawless is joining the cast, which is already packed to the brim with powerful young women exploring their dark sides and witchcraft. But Lawless' character, Countess Marburg, is shrouded in mystery. Even after the Salem Season 2 premiere, Lawless' character is going to remain a mystery — she'll leave us asking multitudes of questions. Luckily, I was able to visit the Salem set and get a few answers for myself.
"She’s going to come and, Mary has something she wants and because it’s not easy to get she’s going to have to play it cool and play the long game and really win the town by charm," says Lawless of Countess Marburg, who's a German witch who'll step foot in Salem some time in the near future.
Of course, she's the perfect foil to Mary, who cannot count charm among her wiles, though she does have her ways. "[Countess Marburg] turns on the charm offensive and Mary is not really having it but you can’t see because she wears the conventional mask very well but you know it’s going to go horribly wrong," says Lawless.
But who is this countess and why is she leaving Europe for some little old town in America? As Lawless said, Marburg is after "something," but what that something is isn't quite clear.
Above: Countess Marburg's destination, the set of Salem.
Luckily, co-creator Adam Simon fought the brays of the livestock on Salem's Louisiana set to give me a little more insight into this new character.
"Lucy is the Countess Marburg who is, we often refer to her as 'the last of the first,'" he says. "She’s like the original witch, she’s primordial. It goes way way way back , she may be thousands of years old; there’s all kinds of mysteries there."
OK, that's vague, but it's something. He did however, share a little more about Marburg's nature. Being that Mary isn't an all-bad baddie, and her foe last season — Increase Mathers — wasn't entirely a bad guy either, is Lawless coming in as an all-out villain? Simon says that's not really how Salem rolls.
"But even to say if [the Countess] is all bad, I don’t view it that way. If anything she’s verging on almost kind of a dark goddess figure … we really avoid ever showing 'this guy's a good guy, this guy's a bad guy.' Like Mary says to Anne, it’s not a puritan suit in all black and white, it’s shades of grey," says Simon.
Three Xena Warrior Princess wails to that.
Salem premieres April 5 at 10 pm ET on WGNA.
Images: WGNA; Kelsea Stahler