‘Snowfall’: Damson Idris & Dave Andron On Crafting The Perfect Ending, Not Saying Goodbye

SPOILER ALERT: The following story reveals major plot points from the Season 6 premiere of FX’s Snowfall, episodes 1 and 2.

FX’s Snowfall premiered its sixth season on Wednesday night and while fans are feeling all the excitement about reuniting with Franklin Saint (Damson Idris) and the gang, it’s definitely bittersweet as this season serves as the series’ last.

There will be weeks to process whatever is going down as the story goes from crescendo to conclusion, but in the meantime, let’s enjoy the ride. The Season 6 premiere titled “Fallout” begins with a reminder of who is affected by the drug epidemic then and now which goes well beyond dealers, users, and all others involved directly by choice.

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A young girl named Tisha sits on the stoop of her home afraid and holding a stuffed animal for comfort. A mailman who is familiar with the family asks her, “What’s wrong?” She admits her daddy never came home. Together they find her father is the latest victim of violence leaving Tisha with an unknown future.

Franklin is all in his feelings when we see him again, he’s broke and desperate to survive after Teddy (Carter Hudson) emptied his bank accounts. With a baby on the way, Franklin will not accept defeat. There’s ego and pride in the way, for sure but there’s no way he will graciously decline into nothingness without a fight—even if some people he cares about get hurt along the way.

Franklin selfishly puts his needs above others, like his pregnant girlfriend Veronique (Devyn A. Tyler) who hops on a private plane to do his dangerous bidding. Cissy (Michael Hyatt) has been Franklin’s day-one ride-or-die and she’s never faltered, even when she used tough love to help save him from this future. Both of these women are fighting for a future and protecting the future of the family that Veronique is carrying, even if Franklin is dedicating his efforts elsewhere.

After stealing from Jerome (Amin Joseph) and Louie (Angela Lewis), Franklin’s circle gets smaller as his uncle takes down Franklin’s associates to get his money and product back. #RIPBlackDiamond

The mayhem continues into episode 2, where Franklin is given multiple opportunities to make things right. Franklin is roped into a meetup with Oso (Sergio Peris-Mencheta) as the latter is desperate to identify a mysterious stranger at the behest of Teddy. This puts a sparkle in Franklin’s eye.

As much fun as it is to see Franklin and Oso chop it up, it was the tete-a-tete between uncle and nephew in “The Sit Down” that will go down as one of the best moments of the series.

When they meet, they’re a long way away from Season 1. They’re now enemies, opponents in this game of drugs and violence whose father/son relationship is irrevocably broken. There’s certainly love between these two men who for various reasons got caught up in the game but Franklin, as we knew him, is gone.

Jerome opens up his heart and offers him words of regret for having failed him, Franklin responds in kind by pulling a gun on him in the middle of the busy restaurant—Tisha is looking on from her booth. Yes, it’s going to be a bumpy ride going forward.

Series co-creator Dave Andron and star Damson Idris break down the events of the premiere episodes and set up what’s ahead.

DEADLINE: Damson, when we see Franklin at the start of this season, he’s like a cornered cat ready to scratch. What insight can you share into what’s going through his mind?

DAMSON IDRIS: I think you’ve hit the nail on the head: he’s really in survival mode. That’s the biggest note I’ve given myself this season; just playing with the anxiety and the uncertainty of it all. The good thing about Franklin this season actually— Veronique says, “You’ve always been able to see the rational and irrational things”— and that’s something he’s always played out. He’s always been confident even when out of his league. Now he’s anything but and the cracks are showing. And, just in comparison to how I played him before, Franklin was someone who was a daredevil who would just dive off a cliff and he didn’t hit any rocks at the bottom. Now he’s getting a little closer to those rocks.

DEADLINE: Dave, what insight can you give into the process of writing the character of Franklin and his evolution across 6 seasons?

DAVE ANDRON: This guy from minute one was like, “I want to be a badass; I want to be cool,” and I was like, “Look, you’re a kid who’s getting into a dangerous game.” I remember over the first couple of seasons, fans would say how bad Franklin was at this and how he’s getting his ass whooped. Yeah, he’s a f***ing kid who went to prep school in the valley, he’s not a gangster. I think the evolution of that has been part of the fun and trying to find the unique idiosyncratic ways to do it with Franklin and let Damson really play. When you think about the evolution of that character, and then see him now after he’s risen so high and now has his back against the wall, you’re gonna find out what is he capable of.

DEADLINE: When looking back on the series, there are plenty of parallels between Franklin’s journey and Teddie’s. Are their fates intertwined?

DA: I think for all the things that separate Teddy and Franklin, there are similarities. These are two young guys who are incredibly ambitious and are very easily able to compartmentalize and say that the ends justify the means. They were aligned for a long time, both personally and professionally. I assumed people were not going to like the CIA and Teddy. I was like, no, no, he’s the white dude and the government so he’s the bad guy. But then we realized at a certain point that the love for Franklin was so great that if he was on Team Franklin, people were Team Teddy.

DEADLINE: Dave, Franklin and Oso’s paths crossed again this season. What can we expect from them and if you plan to give Oso closure with Lucia (Emily Rios)?

DA: Those two have an interesting history that goes a long way back. We knew where we were going with things and there was a reason we sent Franklin and Oso on that odyssey together last season. When you look at the pieces on the board, there’s this game of survival and who is going to give me the best chance of getting out alive.

Regarding Lucia, I think Oso’s story has moved on. What he always wanted was a family and he thought with Lucia he was going to get it but he realized she was not that person. Oso has found the thing he wants that was really important to him. I know it’s frustrating to not have all the answers but Lucia just isn’t his person anymore.

DEADLINE: In one of the most impactful and emotional scenes of the series, we really get to see how lost Franklin is when he meets his uncle at the diner. Break this down for me, Damson.

DI: Jerome was a father figure to Franklin. I think despite the animosity between Franklin and Jerome right now, Franklin blames Louie for all of it. In his eyes, none of this would be happening if it wasn’t for Louie’s deceit and betrayal. We try not to set it up to show that but I do believe the audience is going to see her as the common thing that made these two men go against each other.

That final scene was such a beautiful scene, it was directed by Ben Younger. And on the topic of fight or flight, I feel like Franklin is at a stage now where it’s all or nothing. He says that in that first episode when Jerome threatens his life at the airport. He says, “I’m ready for this and I’m ready for anything.” There’s nothing he’s not prepared to do. His money really is the only goal and he’s willing to turn against anyone Jerome, Leon (Isaiah John), Louie— even his mother.

DEADLINE: Damson, how will you say goodbye to Franklin and move on to the next thing?

I’m gonna go to Trinidad and Tobago, do carnival and I’ll leave Franklin on vacation there.[Laughs] Building the character has always been a joy. He’s changed so much over the seasons, going from boy to man and similarly, I have too throughout this journey. I was 23 or 24 when I started on the show and now I’m 31 which is like wow! It really is a beautiful thing to see Franklin as the foundation of my career. I’ll never really say goodbye to him. People on the street call me Franklin and I still spin my head around out of respect for him. The character isn’t really ending, he’s going to live on forever.

DEADLINE: Dave, what can you tease about how Franklin’s story ends?

DA: Finding the ending is hard, right? There’s a tradition in this genre about how anti-heroes stories have to end and I felt like we had to do something that subverted that a little bit but stayed true to our show and who Franklin is. I think we found it, a surprising and yet inevitable ending for him.

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