“The Other Two” is skipping right over the pandemic to get to Season 3

“The Other Two” is skipping right over the pandemic to get to Season 3
Heléne Yorke and Drew Tarver Photo: Greg Endries/HBO Max

Today, HBO Max announced the premiere date for the third season of its cult fave comedy The Other Two. The series returns May 4, and while a trailer hasn’t been released yet, the show’s cast and creators have shared details about what fans can expect along with some first-look photos.

The show, created by former Saturday Night Live co-head writers Sarah Schneider and Chris Kelly, centers on siblings Brooke and Cary Dubek (Heléne Yorke and Drew Tarver), a pair of “old millennial” strivers struggling to make it in the entertainment biz. Season 1, which aired on Comedy Central in 2019 saw their lives thrown into disarray when their younger brother (Case Walker) became an overnight Bieber-esque pop sensation. In Season 2, which moved to HBO Max in 2021, their mom (Molly Shannon) became an even more wildly successful talk show host. With no more Dubek family members to overshadow them, might Season 3 finally be Brooke and Cary’s time to shine?

“This is definitely our most ambitious season so far,” Schneider tells Vanity Fair. “We just take a lot of big swings and try a lot of big premises, because we as writers don’t want to be bored.”

Big swing No. 1: The new season is jumping ahead three years from early 2020 to the present. Season 2 ended with struggling gay actor Cary finally landing a film role — with rehearsals set to begin on March 13, 2020, the day the U.S. declared COVID-19 a national emergency.

“We did just skip right the hell over that,” Kelly says of the global pandemic.

Brooke and Cary have certainly progressed in their careers in Season 3. But it turns out, with success comes a different kind of status anxiety and new people to compare themselves to.

Greg Endries/HBO Max Heléne Yorke and Drew Tarver

“With the time jump, the family is years into being part of the public eye,” Tarver says. “I feel like they’ve settled into their fame, or their notoriety, and the issues that they were dealing with have become more commonplace. There’s maybe a deeper layer of, I guess, humiliation and sadness that comes along with that. The show continues to deliver in terms of the characters being humiliated — the ‘other two’ getting humiliated — in a very exciting, funny, new way.”

Big swing No. 2: One of the Dubeks is starring in a Broadway show, but the show’s creators aren’t saying who. “It’s definitely a big Broadway play that’s a centerpiece of an episode in the show,” says Kelly. “But who’s in it? Why are they in it? I don’t know.” Smart money is on Cary, obviously.

Greg Endries/HBO Max Case Walker

Big swing No. 3: ChaseDreams (Walker) enters what Vanity Fair describes as his “Miley Cyrus era.” Part of the reason for the Season 3 time-jump, Kelly and Schneider explain, was to accommodate the fact that Walker, who was 14 when Season 1 started production, is now 20 years old. “We sort of explore when a child star turns 18 and they’re not a child anymore. Suddenly, they’re adult, and their team can kind of be like, hell yeah,” Kelly says.

Other big swings that we still don’t know much about: Pat (Shannon) seems to have achieved an obscene level of media mogul power, and it also looks like Brooke…is going to space?

Greg Endries/HBO Max Molly Shannon
Greg Endries/HBO Max Heléne Yorke

Guest stars for Season 3 reportedly include Simu Liu, Fin Argus, Ann Dowd, Edie Falco, Ben Platt, Dylan O’Brien, and Lukas Gage.

Meanwhile, with so many beloved HBO Max shows getting the axe post-Warner Bros./Discovery merger, should fans be worried about The Other Two’s future? “We’re just kind of doing our own thing,” Kelly says. “We hear the things about HBO and HBO Max and stuff, but we just sort of keep working and keep making the show. I guess it’s sort of a separate thing.”

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