Reacher’s Alan Ritchson: That ‘Special’ Episode 4 Cameo ‘Felt Like Magic’

The following contains spoilers from the Dec. 22 episode of Reacher, now streaming on Prime Video.

Nick Santora, the showrunner for Prime Video’s Reacher series based on the Lee child novels, told TVLine between seasons, “You never know if a character [from Season 1] might come back. We might come up with a great idea and say, ‘You know what? Maybe that character can work in Season 2 or Season 3,’ and then you bring them back for a bit or for an extended visit.”

But, the EP reminded, “Reacher is not a character who runs around with an entourage. He’s a lone wolf, so you have to stay true to that.”

The good news is that in the fourth episode of Season 2, Santora found a reason for a crowd-pleasing cameo by Malcolm Goodwin’s Oscar Finlay, a major character from the TV series’ freshman run.

Setting the stage for Finlay’s tweed-suited encore: Reacher & Co. learned that New Age’s nine-figure “Little Wing” government contract has been sneaked through by a sus senator based out of Boston. They then set out to target said politico’s legislative director, to gain further intel. To that end, Dixon (Serinda Swan) “met cute” the senator’s coke-inclined aide at a Boston opera, then sneaked off with him after to bump lines in her car. The aide got busted, though, when who rapped on the car window but Boston PD detective Oscar Finlay. Afterward at the cop shop, Reacher and O’Donnell (Shaun Sipos) posed as feds who leaned on the aide to tell all about Little Wing and its exploitable capabilities.

Now, if as a Reacher Season 1 fan you screamed a bit when Goodwin’s face popped up on your screen, know that series star Ritchson responded similarly to the callback.

“I screamed, too, when I saw his name in the script,” Ritchson shared with TVLine. “I couldn’t wait to have him back.

“It really felt special,” Ritchson said, given the “different setting, different place, different characters, and completely different circumstances” of Season 2.

“To have [Malcolm] back on set felt like magic,” the actor effused. “There was lightning in a bottle from Season 1, for sure.”

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After Reacher and O’Donnell got what they needed from the senator’s aide, this week’s episode did a pretty good job of revisiting Reacher and Finlay’s dynamic from Season 1, as they traded in-jokes about Finlay’s tweed suit and Reacher, you know, killing people. Finlay also got playfully zinged by Neagley, when he remarked on her glam undercover fit.

In the Prime Video series’ very first episode, Reacher was passing through Margrave, Ga., when he got hauled into Finlay’s police department, suspected of murdering a newly discovered, yet-to-be-ID’d John Doe.

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In one of that episode’s most memorable scenes, Reacher showed off his superpower of observation by venturing that Finlay is a Harvard grad, recently divorced, and quit smoking in the past six months — and then rattling off the clues and micro-expressions that led him to that mostly accurate assessment. (Finlay’s wife had in fact died.)

At the close of the Season 1 finale, Finlay thanked Reacher for helping him identify and deal with some very dirty business in the Georgia town, and then said that he planned to return to Boston — hopefully to live a life after “spinning” (his wedding ring, and in place) for too long. Reacher also learned that Finlay named a dog they had rescued “Jack,” seeing as Reacher wasn’t using the name!

What did you think about Reacher 2×04, and Finlay’s stealth cameo?

Want scoop on Reacher, or for any other TV show? Email [email protected], and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line!

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