‘The Bold Type’ Boss on the Series Finale & [Spoiler]’s Return, Plus What’s Next for the Girls?
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for The Bold Type series finale, “I Expect You to Have Adventures.”]
The Bold Type began its series finale the same way it began its premiere: with Jane (Katie Stevens), Kat (Aisha Dee), and Sutton (Meghann Fahy) screaming as a form of public transportation sped by (a bus instead of a subway this time).
By the end of the episode, Jacqueline (Melora Hardin) announced her replacement for editor-in-chief: Kat, not Jane as had been planned. In fact, Jane decided to leave Scarlet altogether and continue writing while traveling.
As for their personal lives, Kat and Adena (Nikohl Boosheri) got back together (and decided to make their own rules about what their relationship will entail), as did Sutton and Richard (Sam Page) after he realized he wants her more than kids. Jane did run into her ex-boyfriend Ryan (Dan Jeannotte), and they reminisced about writing.
TV Insider turned to showrunner Wendy Straker Hauser to break down the series finale, find out what could be next for the characters, and more.
It felt like Jane had to be editor-in-chief or not at Scarlet at all at the end. Talk about the decision to have her accept Jacqueline’s offer then ultimately decide to leave Scarlet.
Wendy Straker Hauser: She didn’t really know how she was going to feel when she accepted that job. We tried to slow-roll her coming to terms with the fact that the thing that she had always imagined was her dream job, in reality, was not, It just felt like a really interesting story to tell for women in their 20s and for anybody really. She didn’t say no off the bat because I don’t think that she knew that it wasn’t right. Sometimes we have jitters, sometimes we second guess ourselves.
But as her journey went on and as she was writing that Frankie story and losing herself in her writing, and, of course, ultimately when she found that note from her dad, she just remembered that she at her core is a writer and that her journey is not supposed to end in that big chair, like she thought it did in the pilot. That’s OK, and we love the idea of telling a story of Jane being really brave and owning that and celebrating a new journey that she doesn’t even know how it ends, which feels really different for Jane because she’s very type A, and she always has the answers. But here, she’s gonna go off and not know the answers and that’s actually really exciting.
Was Ryan’s return just to spur Jane into that decision or to hint that a reunion could be in their future?
She and Ryan first met over writing and they share that passion for being writers. It was sort of two-fold. We love the idea that the two of them took a trip down memory lane and it reminded her of who she really is and what she really loves. It was also kind of interesting and satisfying for us to see this couple reunited on a playing field that felt not devastating, that they love each other, they’ll always love each other, but they’re OK and Jane was more than OK. It felt great to see him. That just felt like a place that we wanted to end her.
As for whether they’ll have a future, if we had all the episodes in the world, I would not be opposed to entertaining that. I really believe that Ryan met the love of his life and he will regret that he lost her for a very, very long time. He was just in his 20s and not mature enough to meet the girl that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with, but he did. That happens sometimes. And so I’m of the mindset that it was terrible, terrible timing, but that he loved her with all his heart and that they could have had a happily ever after. So, one never knows if that would happen.
This season really addressed head-on Kat and commitment, and becoming editor-in-chief of Scarlet is probably the biggest commitment she could make. In a way, just thinking of Kat in the board room makes it feel like it was always building to this. How do you see Kat changing Scarlet as a result of taking that on?
She’s going to lead Scarlet into the future. That really is the future we’re living in today. I just think all those older white men are going to not be there anymore. It’s going to be a true changing of the guards. I see her changing policy left and right. I see her changing what it means to be beautiful and truly everything that Jacqueline would have wanted to change and had started to change, Kat will be able to take it to the finish line. Scarlet will look very different, but it wouldn’t have been possible without obviously all the hard work of Jacqueline and the mentorship and then who Kat is as a person.
What might Kat and Adena’s future hold as they make their own rules?
I think they are forever now. There’s not going to be another Kat-Adena breakup or Kat running to Adena’s doorway or anything like that. They are more solid than ever before. It will be an ongoing conversation for them on what their relationship looks like and what makes the two of them happy, but I kind of smile when I think to myself, they’re probably more traditional than they even realize in the sense that they’re just going to end up so happy together and be conquering the world during the day and night and want to just cuddle up and be together when they’re not saving the world and enjoy each other’s company.
We watched Sutton go from assistant to stylist, and I loved her and Jacqueline’s conversation in the finale. There are hints that she’ll eventually take over for Oliver, but what does her more immediate future look like at Scarlet?
It’ll be more of an even playing field. I still believe that she’ll go to therapy. I one day hope that she reconciles with her mom. But I think she’s just coming into her own for real at work and she’s going to be more of a peer with Oliver [Stephen Conrad Moore] than an underling.
Richard decided he wants Sutton more than he wants kids. What did you want to do with their breakup and time apart to build to their reunion?
Sometimes you have to take time apart to realize what you’ve lost and to sort of weigh out what you’re willing to lose. Clearly, they had different versions of what their future would look like and that happens. And then you have to really take a look at what the options are and decide what’s going to make you happy. Ultimately they were both devastated without each other. I don’t think that when Richard first saw Sutton, he intended to make this huge proclamation, but spending the time together when they were brought back together made him feel so happy and complete and right and that losing her would be just too big of a loss. And so he made a choice and she made the choice to believe him and allow herself to be happy.
Have they left the issue of having kids in the past or could Richard have regrets?
I don’t think Richard’s going to have regrets. He could never live his life without her. He will be so grateful that he made that decision.
With Jacqueline, we saw the struggle between her professional and personal lives over these five seasons. What is the next chapter for her and Ian [Gildart Jackson], both as a couple and what they’re going to do working together?
We had talked about the two of them traveling a lot. We pulled back a little bit on it because we didn’t want it to seem too similar to Jane’s journey, but we talked about [how] he’s a photographer and maybe they would end up making documentaries together or some sort of art installation or some sort of book project. We liked the idea that they would not only have adventures personally, but that they would also work on a project together and that he would have a chance to continue his passion, but with Jacqueline by his side.
Oliver and Jasper [Justin Walker White] are getting back together. Can they make it work? What makes Oliver think they can this time?
He’s allowing himself to trust Jasper and I think that they can make it work. Jasper has changed [and] is in a different place. Carly’s in a different place. Oliver’s a different person than when Jasper first had issues with addiction and Oliver had never been a dad before. It just feels like they’ll be more communicative with each other and they have a good chance. I hope they do because I love them together.
Did anything about any of the characters’ endings change, whether since you took over as showrunner [in Season 4] or while planning these final episodes?
We never really planned where — or at least I had never talked about with anyone where — the show would end. We never wanted to imagine the show ending, so I don’t think we took the time to plan that out. Once we knew that the show was ending, we, in an organic way, found the ending for Jane and Kat pretty quickly. We struggled and had lots of conversations about the Richard-Sutton ending because it was a difficult one and we weren’t sure if their issue was going to be too big to overcome, despite the fact that they would always love each other. But ultimately it just felt like they belong together and we wanted to leave them off that way as we ended the series.
Are there any storylines you would have spent more time on or any you wanted to do if you’d had more episodes in this final season or another season?
I think we just would have told our stories slower and we would have dug deeper into them. Sutton’s journey through therapy was only one episode. We could have reunited with her mother or her father. That might’ve been really interesting. I could tell a million more stories of these girls in this world, but ultimately we feel like we got to the place that they were all supposed to be in. It just was a little bit faster.
Is Andrew [Adam Capriolo] going to be Kat’s assistant?
I imagine that Kat is going to promote Andrew. I imagine that it will be hard for Andrew [and] he’ll still want to help her because he’d be very used to it. But I think Andrew is probably a very good writer and it would be really fun to see him actually be in the position that Jane was in when she started at the magazine in Season 1.
That would be fun to see. Especially after we watched Sutton go from assistant to stylist. And with Alex [Matt Ward] gone, there’s an opening.
There is. There also wasn’t the gay male perspective and there certainly should be. I think he has a whole career in front of him.