The last season of ‘Weeds’ ended with a bang – literally – when Shane murdered Pilar (Kate del Castillo) by hitting her with a croquet mallet. He was protecting his mother, Nancy (Mary Louise Parker), but he sure seemed to enjoy it. In the sixth season premiere (Monday, 10/9c on Showtime), the teen with killer aim is front and center as the Botwin family flees Nancy’s drug lord husband Esteban. Alexander Gould, the preternaturally talented 16-year-old who plays Shane previewed the new season, revealing that the Botwins are going on the run, Shane’s going crazy and Nancy’s going back to the ganja.
The Botwins are going to flee up North and assume new identities. What’s Shane’s going to be?
The new identities aren’t super different. Shane becomes a lot brighter over the course of this season. He takes on a little bit of a happier outlook, wears brighter colors but otherwise he doesn’t change that much. The Botwins are actually traveling all over, on the run, a different city every day and get into a whole bunch of crazy stuff that isn’t very normal for anybody. Obviously, because it’s the Botwins, they take it to the extreme.
So they are going to be on the run for the entire season?
Yeah. Everyone’s discombobulated. The whole family’s always not sure what’s going on. It’s good because it gets back to the core family as opposed to a whole bunch of different storylines.
Will Nancy go back to doing what she does best, selling drugs?
Yeah. They try to be normal for a little while and Nancy decides that really she can’t be normal. So she but also they’re constantly on the run and being chased.
Is Esteban going to get to them?
He’s trying definitely. The entire season is kind of a game of cat and mouse. Esteban’s the cat and we’re the mouse. We’re constantly on the run trying to stay away.
Are Nancy and Andy going to become romantically involved this season?
No. That’s a tension that’s left up in the air. From what I know, they don’t.
Is Shane going to get a girlfriend?
Not this season. It doesn’t work with the lifestyle. Shane has a lot of fun storylines but that’s not one of them, unfortunately.
Are the Botwins ever going to get back to Agrestic?
A little bit this season. I can tease you with that, but I won’t tell you how. We figure out what happened to it.
What’s Shane’s relationship with Silas going to be like this season?
Shane has this confidence and with that comes strength. He intimidates his brother a lot throughout the season. But all in all they realize that they’re in this together and they’re brothers. They’re the only two that are kind of half normal in the family and they’re the only two who are going to be able to survive Nancy’s craziness.
Does Nancy have any moments of self-awareness where she stops being the world’s worst mother?
Nancy’s definitely not your top of the line mother. Shane recognizes that and realizes he needs to be a mother, kind of, to the baby and that’s kind of a fun storyline that goes on later in the season. He takes on the mother role because he knows Nancy’s not going to do a good job at it.
Tell me about the other characters’ storylines.
It’s a whole bunch of chaos and craziness. Silas gets into some stuff with a girl. Andy is the loyal dog for Nancy. He follows her wherever she goes. It’s a really funny season.
Has the show’s humor returned? What happened in Mexico was really dark.
There’s definitely a lot of humor. Everybody is going to have fun. We get in so many crazy shenanigans wherever we go that it definitely lightens the mood.
How does killing Pilar change Shane?
It’s not so much killing someone but the direction of season five. He gets really intense and leads up to killing Pilar and then feels like he’s finally gotten Nancy’s attention, which is what he’s always aiming for. So he’s got her attention now and it makes him happy and confident. He’s got that almost a power over her.
A lot of fans think that Shane is psycho. Do you agree?
A little bit, yes. I think Shane definitely doesn’t feel any remorse for his actions. He’s kind of insane. It provides for a lot of fun kind of crazy stuff over the next season because he has that vibe where no one’s ever sure if he’s going to snap or not.
How has Shane changed since the series began?
In the beginning, he was an innocent little kid. He didn’t really have any clue of what was going on around him. As the seasons have progressed he’s gotten less and less innocent. He found out about the operation and almost became the moral center of the whole operation. Then he changed again becoming completely emo about it and killing somebody.
Shane and Silas are old enough that they could leave. Why do they stay loyal to Nancy?
I think she’s corrupted them enough that she finds that they find that it’s either stay with her or die. The flaw with all of the characters, and especially Nancy, is that people like her, no matter how much bad stuff she does. That’s the problem with everyone in the family. They hate what she’s done. They like her. It creates a really interesting tension.
Will Shane ever kill again? Would he kill someone for a reason other than protecting his mother?
Other than protecting his mother, I don’t think he would. But he can come pretty close.
Do you think Shane is capable of living a normal life or is he destined to be like Nancy?
I think he’s destined to be a little bit of a crazy person. I think he has a really great career path as an assassin or something.
Should Shane get his own spin-off where he travels the world killing people with croquet mallets?
We had an idea for a Dexter-like series about him.
What’s it like being the only kid on a show that is intended for adult viewers?
It’s been really interesting. I’ve definitely been sheltered from a lot of it, but there’s no hiding the fact that I am the only kid. It’s been great because everyone watches out for me and makes sure I’m not getting too corrupted by any of it.