What We Do in the Shadows’ fourth season is finally here, and our four favorite Staten Island vampires are set for another host of supernatural misadventures. When we last left our heroes, reborn energy vampire Colin Robinson has been left in the care of Laszlo, and Nadja, Nandor, and Guillermo return to find the manor in shambles. I spoke with stars Matt Berry and Natasia Demetriou (Laszlo and Nadja, respectively) about children eating from dog bowls, the torso of Doug Jones, the tragedy of a dead Jeff, and whether or not we may see Jackie Daytona again.
[To Matt] At the end of Season 3, Laszlo initially stays behind, of course, to raise young ‘Colin Robinson’ into someone hopefully not boring, and he learns in a weird way to respect Colin for what he is, in a sense. Tell me about Laszlo’s journey this season?
Matt Berry: Well he’s basically plunked with the job of father because there was no one else there, and rather go and lose the kid in a park or do something awful like that he sort of chooses to bring him up. The reason that they chose Laszlo for that job is because he’s the most unlikely character out of them all that you would think would have any interest or ability to do that, so it was good fun because it was, you know, kids doing the craziest things.
Like there’s one, and I’ll never forget this for the rest of my days, where one of the little kids had to eat cereal out of a dog bowl while we all sort of cheered, and I remember when I did that I thought, well, it’s safe to say that I’ll never be doing anything like that ever again, in any other show. It’s those kinds of moments where you think ‘this is the craziest shit I’ve ever done,’ and that’s such fun, it really is.
[To Natasia] In this season, Nadja is the proud owner of a vampiric nightclub. You can tell how important it is by how she supernaturally screams at any barrier to her success. What does the club mean for her, and why is it so important?
Natasia Demetriou: I think Nadja got a taste of power from the vampiric nightclub. She got a flavor of actually [being] pretty good at sort of, well, she’s she thinks she’s pretty good at, better than she actually is, at running stuff. I think for her she was like, ‘no, I want to do this. I want to have my own little mission.’ Laszlo has got Colin, Nandor’s got his endless search for love. Everyone else’s got [this varied] storyline, so I think it was very important for her to do that, and I think she absolutely loves it a toxic amount.
I don’t know how good it turns out for her running a nightclub, but for me it was the best thing in the world, ever. I couldn’t believe it when I got on set and they had the ‘Nadja’ nightclub symbol, it was honestly Heaven. I’ve said this before, but I find it so funny how Nadja and Laszlo absolutely love to just dance at any point, no matter what’s going on. If there’s someone, there’s a bit of music happening, they’re like, ‘oh, okay, I’ll have a boogie,’ so to do that with Matt in a nightclub setting was so much fun.
That brings me perfectly to my next question. When they reunite in the first episode of this season, where are they at?
MB: They’re as tight as they ever were, it’s just that they’ve got fairly massive things to deal with… Nadja’s got this nightclub with staff and all the rest of what comes with that, and he’s got to bring up this kid. They’re as tight as they ever were, they’re still as into each other and as horny as they’ve ever been, but they’ve got a lot on their plates. As a result, you know, their days are filled.
ND: They’re wide open. They always make time for each other. There’s always that sort of a constant that they’re absolutely obsessed with each other, no matter what else is going on.
Nadja, I’m also continually disturbed by Nadja’s inability to pronounce ‘Jeff.’ Will we ever see the return of her ever-reincarnated lover?
ND: That’s something you’d have to ask the writers, but he’s so great, Jake is so lovely to act with. I do worry that the last time he appeared, I think Laszlo kind of finished him off. That was like ‘enough of that.’
MB: He’s gone.
It’s nice to at least have some proper closure.
ND: I don’t know, that’s the beauty of the show. You absolutely never know, anyone could, you know, find a potion and come back to life, so you never know.
MB: It might not be that Jeff, but another Jeff could easily appear on us here.
Well I’m here if you need me. What was the weirdest scene to film this season?
MB: Well, I’ve already answered that when they made the poor kid eat from the dog bowl. That was the weirdest thing, not only to film but to actually see, it’s one of the weirdest things I’ve ever had to watch.
ND: For me, it was probably something with Doug Jones, because he’s a torso. So you’re sort of on set, just like ‘Doug Jones is a torso,’ and then there’s The Sire in the background. You’re like, ‘oh, you know, there’s just a man in an insane puppet costume’ and we’re all just chatting about Comic-Con or something, but then you’re like ‘hang on, he’s got no legs, right. Okay, sorry about that.’
There’s always like days like that, where you’re like ‘what is this? What’s going on?’ So yeah, it’s quite often like that. And then when the hellhound was there, it was like, ‘Oh, and there’s a dog, aaaand now there’s a child. Okay, fine. Yeah, sure. Got it.’
MB: Talking about The Sire, it kind of reminds me of something that I found very funny on the day, and still do now. So the guy that’s in the Sire costume, that’s really hot in there, and he needs to have these breaks. And what he was doing is he was having his ‘evil way’ with me from behind, and then he’d have a break, and they take his hat off, and everyone was so serious around.
They were like, ‘are you okay, going?’ ‘Yeah, I’m fine.’ ‘Okay. Are you ready to go again?’ They put the hat on, then he’d be up there… just the weirdest thing. They were taking it so seriously, and he was taking it so seriously, when what he was actually doing was being… anyway, you can work it out.
ND: There’s a lot of that because it’s so fantastical, and obviously… it’s a job, so, you know, we’d have really funny moments, but sometimes it’s we need to get through something, sometimes there’s a bit of a health hazard, so everyone has to be really serious, and then you stop and look around and you’re like ‘there’s a grown man in a child’s [clothes] there.
I love it so much, it’s part of the reason why this is my favorite show on television right now. Guillermo has a real path of finding himself these last seasons, but how does it affect Nadia and Laszlo?
MB: Well, they don’t give a shit about him. It doesn’t affect them at all. I don’t even think that Laszlo could actually remember his name, because they are quite selfish, that couple, so he doesn’t enter their world at all until he talks, and then when he does talk they just want him to shut up. I mean, it’s the same with Nandor, they don’t really notice Nandor either. When he talks, if you watch them they’re not ever saying ‘listen!’ They’ll listen to Colin Robinson because you can’t help it, because he has that sort of trick.
ND: I think that is why you can have so many different tangents and different storylines, because in the real world, if they were human beings, everyone would be very concerned about each other, or sort of empathetic to what the other is going through. But because they’re all such selfish assholes, I think you can have these [stories] like one’s got a nightclub, one’s raising a child, one’s trying to find his wife… it’s big, but they’re just like ‘yeah, I don’t care.’
MB: That’s exactly I mean, to answer your question. They won’t even notice that he’s on a personal journey, sort of literal journey. They won’t care.
ND: Yeah, that’s very true. They only care if it affects them in a negative way.
MB: Can’t help them can’t open the door or something, then it’s a problem. Other than that, they don’t give a fuck.
As evidenced by the fact that he was just left in the crate. Nobody bothered.
Matt, do you think we’ll ever see the return of Jackie Daytona?
MB: I don’t know. ‘Tasia said something sort of interesting in the last interview, that it’d be good if they kind of went on the run but as a couple. Jackie Daytona had his Bonnie and Clyde, I think that would be interesting, if he was to sort of come back he would be there with his wife. It would be like a two-pronged attack.
ND: My disguise would be a cigarette or a bottle of beer, or something.
What’s the most difficult scene for that for this season, for the both of you?
MB: For me, personally, it’s anything that involves heights or very cold weather, they’re usually difficult. I hate heights. And I can’t talk very quickly in really cold weather.
ND: I think for me, I’m really pleased because, you know, sometimes for time or whatever they’ll do the blood in Post, but there was a lot of actual real blood, like real. I mean, ‘real’ fake blood, we haven’t actually been using real… bloody hell, but yeah, no, real blood. Blood does not like continuity, and there was a lot of blood involved in the nightclub, so that was quite challenging because once you get covered, once the blood’s everywhere, it’s not going anywhere. You have to be quite careful, so I’d say yeah, just loads of blood everywhere. It’s a bit of a nightmare, to be honest.
What We Do in the Shadows’ Season 4 premieres today on FX.