The actress weighs in on all the surprises from season 5A and teases what's to come!
Spoiler alert! Do not proceed if you have not watched the first eight episodes of Lucifer season 5.
The Netflix drama returned for the first half of its fifth season on Friday, with star Tom Ellis pulling double duty -- as Lucifer's twin, Michael, returned to Earth in his place, ready to shake up the mortal realm as well as his brother's family and friends.
But that, of course, wasn't the only surprise in store for the fallen angel's inner circle. In fact, it was actually Lucifer himself who dealt out the greatest betrayal to his longtime friend, Mazikeen (Lesley-Ann Brandt), who, after suffering a "roller coaster" of emotions involving her ex, Eve, and her mother, Lilith, seemingly sides with Michael in 5A's shocking finale -- in exchange for his soul.
ET's Katie Krause spoke with Brandt about her character's journey through the first part of the season, and she explained that the demon will now be tasked with "finding her footing with Lucifer again."
"It's like, 'Where do I stand now, knowing that for years you lied to me?'" she said of her character's journey. "I think that relationship is definitely rocked. And then there are other relationships that are built on."
While the cast is planning to return to set next month, under strict health and safety protocols, for their surprise sixth and final season -- "Everyone wants to have a smooth shoot, so that we can then go off to have our last hurrah and see the show off appropriately" -- Brandt's getting candid about all things season 5A, and teasing what's to come in the second half of the season. Read on for answers to your most pressing Mazikeen questions!
ET: Season 5A was quite an adventure. How did you feel about Maze's journey?
Lesley-Ann Brandt: This year has been so fulfilling for me, as an artist and as the actress who's been in [this character's] skin for the last five years. I think this is our best season yet, and I think particularly for Mazikeen, you get to learn so much more about what makes her her. Going on this journey with her heartbreak, and then the mommy issues, and then the relationship stuff with her and Lucifer and them teaming up. And then the betrayal and then the fight, it's a lot jam-packed in eight episodes, for sure.
Let's start with one of the biggest questions about those final moments: Is Maze really Team Michael right now?
I think he's a means to an end for her. I think when you have been pushed aside by people that you love or care about -- in her case, with Lucifer, time and time again -- when you are not a consideration when they make decisions but they have always been for you when you make decisions, for the most part, I think everyone has their limits and I think Mazikeen has gotten to that point where it's like, listen, I need to sulk. This is the means to an end.
She definitely does not want to hurt her friends, but there's a betrayal between these two that is just so hard for her to get over... And it's just this kind of roller coaster ride, the hurt, the anger, the pain and the acceptance.
What do you think was the breaking point for her?
It starts with the fact that he left her. And you see that in the beginning of the season. They had a giant fight in season 2, where she thought he was going to leave without her... and he promises, he's like, "I never meant to hurt you, I would never do that to you," and then he does. I think that's a very hard betrayal to get over for her and I'm not sure, going into season 6, if I'm honest, that they ever come back to where they were. I don't know.
Even at the end of this season, the other eight episodes, they're definitely in each other's lives, but I think her focus now is building her life for her.
Even if that means potentially losing Chloe (Lauren German) as a friend?
I think so. I think there comes a point where, when you are constantly outputting and giving to people and giving your energy to them-- I think a lot of strong characters and a lot of strong women, like Maze, people think you can handle so much, but they don't see the behind the scenes of what it takes for you to work through that stuff... There's this very soft, very vulnerable core that Maze has built over the last five years and I think that's kind of affecting that role now.
What do you think it would take for Lucifer and Mazikeen to repair their friendship and get back to where they were?
Time... A soul, maybe, to understand it.... The trust is something that you have to work on. And sometimes, in those kinds of friendships, once you lose trust, it's really hard.
Even romantic relationships, it's really hard to build back on. It's the same thing with Eve. It's like, "You wanted me, you didn't want me..." So I think it would take a lot of work, but I'm not sure their lives are going in the same direction, where that work necessarily is able to happen. Maze wants to go and find her independence, sans Lucifer and that relationship, but where does that lead her? And then Lucifer is trying to do right with Chloe and he knows he's got his own sort of thing going on as well. It would take them prioritizing each other.
Speaking of Eve (Inbar Lavi), the return of Maze's ex was another major emotional hurdle for her this season. What's that connection like for her?
I think it's very weird for Maze. I think in a similar way to Lucifer, she's tethered to Eve. Lucifer for nostalgia, old history, and Eve in a way that's representative of a new stage of life and an acceptance that someone loves me for all of me... Because I think even with the other characters, there's still moments that are like, ugh, Maze. But Eve's like, "Maze, this is just you. This is you." Eve loves both Maze and Mazikeen for all the things that makes them Mazikeen and Maze. I think there's that connection there, but it's definitely confusing when she comes back, for sure.
I think she is trying. And I think that it takes a lot for Maze, like me, to trust that someone is going to show up and be there. She's gone through so much, like, hurt and disappointment and betrayal that sometimes with people, it's like hitting a brick wall with her. Because there's so much learned behavior, that she's like, "See, I let myself be vulnerable again and look what happened and look what happened and look what happened." But, like I said, those two are tethered to each other. The heart wants what the heart wants, so I think there's that pull and push.
Another major relationship in Maze's life also came to a head this season with the emotional arc of her and her mother, Lilith -- she gets to start unpacking some of that emotional baggage, and then loses her again. How do you think that will affect her moving forward?
We're all children at the end of the day, who want to be cared about and loved. Even the toughest, strongest people, you want that parent or some older figure in your life that is there to guide you when you need it, is there to hold you when you need it, is there to tell you that they love you when you need it. And I think Lilith was just unable. She got her soul, but was never able to make that next leap, towards humanity and being a human.
I remember doing that scene [where Maze is] still such a child, going like, "Where were you? You watched me. You knew I was here. You knew I was here trying to figure this sh*t out, and you did nothing. You didn't show up, you weren't there for me. I've been feeling these feelings and stuff that's new and no one told me what it was going to be like!"... It was hard, and then to come around to wanting to see her, and then she's not [receptive] -- you missed your opportunity. I think that's why that storyline with Linda and her daughter is so important, because it's like, you have the opportunity to not go down the path that my mother and I did, so just take it. Just take it. Show up, just do it.
These eight episodes are only going to fuel the fire for fans for the rest of season 5. What can you tease about what's to come for Maze in 5B?
At the tail end of this season, there's a hurt and loss for her that you'll see her react to in her most demonic way ever. Very bloody, very gory... There's one fight scene in particular that is- it's basically the ignition to that hurt, and she's feeling and seeing loss in a way that she's never seen before. You know, human life, whatever -- she's tortured people, she's tortured souls, but you'll see how hard Maze will go for the people she loves in that particular episode.
There's one scene that's so incredibly heartbreaking, I couldn't stop crying between takes... It was really difficult for me, for a number of reasons, both as the actor, and personally, because I'm a mother... And then it leads into just one of the bloodiest, violent things I've done on the show.
After planning for a series finale after five seasons, Lucifer scored a surprise season 6 pickup in June. What do you think could be ahead for Maze in season 6?
I think that where she leaves off at the end of the season, I think that fans will be really happy. I've heard some ideas from the writing room. But I think that if anyone deserves real, honest-to-god happiness and a happy ending, it's this character. She has been through it. So I hope that's where she ends up. It can't come without its drama and its turns and deviation, but I do hope that we get there.
Lucifer season 5A is streaming now on Netflix.