‘Departure’s Archie Panjabi Says You Won’t Know What Happened ‘Until the Very Last Episode’

Archie Panjabi as Kendra Malley in 'Departure' - Season 1
Stephen Scott/Shaftesbury/Greenpoint Productions/Peacock

Even if you’ve never watched It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, chances are you’ve seen that image of Charlie (Charlie Day) in front of a conspiracy board. You might feel a bit like that watching the new thriller, Departure, from the U.K., coming to Peacock on September 17.

“Even though it is about a plane going missing, I don’t think it has [been done before] in the way this has,” series star Archie Panjabi, who plays investigator Kendra Malley, tells TV Insider. “It’s very thrilling and just when you think you know the answer of who you think has done it, it just takes you on this incredible journey of twists and plots, so many of them, and you don’t know until the very last episode what happened.”

And you’ll want to stream all six episodes at once because “it’s so binge-worthy,” she continues. “It is the kind of the show you can just watch in one go because it leaves on a cliffhanger at the end of every episode and you just become desperate to know what the ending is. It’s very addictive.”

Kendra is the best at what she does at work, but she’s still figuring things out at home, with her stepson AJ (Alexandre Bourgeois). “That’s what drew me to the project actually. I thought it was fascinating that here’s a woman who is excellent at dealing with tragedy and an accident of this nature and is very good at bringing about some degree of closure for the families,” while the same isn’t true for what her character’s going through personally, Panjabi says.

Christopher Plummer Claire Forlani Kris Holden Ried Archie Panjabi Departure

Christopher Plummer as Howard Lawson, Claire Forlani as Janet Freeh, Kris Holden-Ried as Dominic Hayes, Archie Panjabi as Kendra Malley (Shaftesbury/Greenpoint Productions/Peacock)

“She’s very private. She’s not very good at opening up,” she explains. “I don’t think she’s aware it’s her job that helps her deal with her private life.” And it’s through this investigation that she’ll be forced to deal with her own issues and find some closure.

As for that investigation, her mentor Howard Lawson (Christopher Plummer) brings her on to look into the disappearance of passenger plane Flight 716 and its lone survivor, Madelyn Strong (Rebecca Liddiard). “She’s very grateful to [Howard],” the star says. “She knows it would’ve been impossible to have reached this position without him, not from not being good at her job but just because it’s seen as a man’s position.”

The job was supposed to be Dominic Hayes’ (Kris Holden-Ried), whom she meets at the start of the investigation. “Initially, she’s wary of him but the two of them strike a good bond. He is unafraid to say what he thinks and he’s a very good investigator, and it’s not long before Kendra does start opening up to him because of this bond that has formed pretty early on,” Panjabi previews. “They have a little bit of a clash in the beginning [before developing] a good, solid, respectful relationship.”

For Kendra, it’s less about trusting what Madelyn has to say and more about the evidence. “Given the nature of what Kendra does … everything has to be about evidence,” Panjabi says. “She has some degree of trust, but she’s learned from the past. She needs to have evidence from everything she gets.”

Rebecca Liddiard Departure Season 1 Madelyn Strong Peacock

Rebecca Liddiard as Madelyn Strong (Steve Wilkie/Shaftesbury/Greenpoint Productions/Peacock)

Ready to start guessing what happened to Flight 716?

Departure, Premiere, Thursday, September 17, Peacock