Spoilers ahead for the Only Murders in the Building Season 2 finale. Once Arconia podcasters Charles, Oliver, and Mabel revealed Bunny Folger’s killer in the Only Murders in the Building Season 2 finale, the time came to introduce a new murder victim. Enter Paul Rudd as Ben Glenroy, a renowned theater actor and star of Oliver’s (Martin Short) new play. Following a one-year time jump, it was opening night and Ben was at serious odds with co-star Charles (Steve Martin), who issued him a stern warning before the curtain went up.
“Be smart. Stay away from her,” Charles cryptically tells Ben, without revealing who the “her” is. After exchanging insults, Ben asks him what he’s going to do if he doesn’t, to which his co-star replies, “Ben, I know what you did.”
Once it was time for curtain up, Ben was just beginning his opening monologue when he collapsed on stage with blood coming out of his mouth. After Oliver, Charles, and others rush to his aid, it seems certain that Ben is dead. Mabel (Selena Gomez) — who was in the audience with Lucy (Zoe Colletti) and Joy (Andrea Martin) — delivered the final line of the season: “You’ve gotta be f*cking kidding me.”
Series co-creator John Hoffman knows that viewers have questions — but they’ll have to wait until Only Murders Season 3 for answers. One thing that’s for certain: Rudd will return to the role, though it’s still unknown if he’ll be a regular character or guest star.
“Paul Rudd, after making an auspicious entrance into the world of our show at the end of Season 2 as Ben Glenroy, is someone we clearly want to know more about and see in our upcoming Season 3 — as he is a clear source of many upcoming questions and, as ever with our show, many twists yet to come!” Hoffman told Variety in an Aug. 23 statement.
In an interview with TVLine, which was published the same day, Hoffman hinted that past victims, such as Bunny (Jayne Houdyshell) and Tim Kono (Julian Cihi) have played “major parts” in the first two seasons. “We’re really excited to have him be a part of it,” he told the website of Rudd, who’s good friends with Short and Martin. He also co-starred. with Gomez in Netflix’s 2016 film, The Fundamentals of Caring.
Though Hoffman considered having Rudd play a fictionalized version of himself — as past guest stars Sting and Amy Schumer did in Seasons 1 and 2, respectively — he ultimately decided that having him play Ben would pack a bigger punch. “The notion of him giving a ‘touch of a–hole’ — the guy who everyone is having challenges with — was really fun,” Hoffman added to TVLine. “He plays it right on that line, and I just love what he’s doing. I can’t wait to see where we go with that.”
Currently several weeks into writing Season 3, he teased that the storyline is “insane and so exciting,” as well as “very twisty.” He added that the victim is “colorfully drawn,” meaning fans can expect Rudd have a significant presence playing a complex (and possibly nefarious) character.