Baltimore Sun

Herrold has freedom to dig into ‘Industry’ character in season 2

- By Joshua Axelrod

For a show ostensibly about the London investment banking scene, “Industry” sure features a lot of sex.

The HBO drama’s trademark steaminess was back in full force during its recent sophomore outing premiere. If that sort of thing isn’t your bag, there’s also still plenty of drama surroundin­g the business and personal dealings of the folks at Pierpoint & Co. to latch onto as well.

For “Industry” star Myha’la Herrold, the show’s more risque tendencies are important in helping to illustrate the Pierpoint gang’s depravity in just about every aspect of their lives.

“I find the show to be horny on all fronts,” Herrold said. “On the sexual front, on the business front, on the mental health front. It’s giving horny all around, and I appreciate that it’s well-rounded. I think the integrity of the show is that it goes all in on all aspects, sex included.”

The first season of “Industry” ended with Herrold’s Harper Stern in an odd place in terms of her relationsh­ips with both mentor Eric Tao (Ken Leung) and formerly close pal Yasmin Kara-Hanani (Marisa Abela).

The new season, now airing Mondays and streaming on HBO Max, picked up with Harper isolated from her friends and co-workers due to COVID-19 anxiety and grappling with how she can prove her worth at Pierpoint.

Yes, the world of “Industry” has also experience­d the same pandemic we have all been living under since March 2020. Herrold said that it was a natural decision by showrunner­s Mickey Down and

Konrad Kay to include the pandemic in season two of “Industry” because of how the show “does its best to parallel reality.” That creative sensibilit­y extended to “Industry,” referencin­g quite a few actual financial-market stories that occurred over the last two-plus years.

With the second season, Herrold felt like she had the freedom to really dig into how Harper would react to a pandemic, some family-induced stress and gaining more responsibi­lities at Pierpoint.

“In the first season, there was a lot of this steely exterior,” she said. “I’m presenting this one way to keep people from seeing how afraid I am. We saw those cracks a little bit in the first season. In the second season when we meet her, she’s kind of defeated, having to go back into the office. She’s scared to do that. Previously, she might have acted like she wasn’t afraid.

“This time, she goes in kind of hoping, maybe if I turn a leaf people will be nice. Then she realizes she’s at Pierpoint, and it all goes to (expletive), as it should.”

As Herrold put it, most of the show’s core characters — Harper, Yasmin, Eric, Robert Spearing

(Harry Lawtey) and Gus Sackey (David Jonsson) — “delve off into their own personal storylines” during the second season of “Industry.” It was just as exciting for her to learn more about all of them as she hopes it will be for viewers.

Where Harper stands with both Eric and Yasmin drives a lot of what ends up going down this season. Herrold said she and

Abela are good friends, which allows them to feel comfortabl­e when the cameras start rolling, “whether we’re screaming at each other or crying laughing.” The same goes for her and Leung, and Herrold had a lot of fun playing out the 180 in their student-mentor dynamic.

When “Industry” first premiered in late 2020, it drew comparison­s to “Succession,” HBO’s other drama about the unfathomab­ly rich and their efforts to stay that way. There’s a moment in the second season of “Industry” that implies those two shows may share an even more similar space than audiences were initially led to believe.

Herrold considers them “third cousins” with each other and sees no reason why they shouldn’t “exist in the same universe.”

 ?? NICK STRASBURG/HBO ?? Marisa Abela, left, as Yasmin and Myha’la Herrold as Harper in “Industry,” now in its second season.
NICK STRASBURG/HBO Marisa Abela, left, as Yasmin and Myha’la Herrold as Harper in “Industry,” now in its second season.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States