‘White Lotus’ star Megan Fahey predicts what happened in Daphne and Ethan’s ‘sexual encounter’
Brake alert: This interview contains spoilers for the second season of “The White Lotus,” now streaming on HBO Max.
The majority of characters in “The White Lotus” Season 2 have issues – and Daphne is no exception. However, the confident, wealthy mother, portrayed by Megan Fahey, is willing to focus on the positive and not let her husband’s blatant infidelity get her down. In fact, she may be betraying herself – apparently as a coping mechanism – and she has it.
During Sunday’s season finale, her husband’s college roommate and their traveling buddy Ethan (Will Sharp) confronts her with a deeply disturbing allegation: he believes his wife Harper (Aubrey Plaza) had sex with Cameron (Theo James). In one of the best scenes in the entire series, Daphne gets annoyed for a split second, shown only by a split-second look of disappointment in her eyes and a squint in her mouth, before telling Ethan that sometimes, it’s okay not to know everything your husband does. Then she invites him to a nearby island.
He never reveals what they are she did During that interlude — though we asked Sharpe his thoughts — it eventually leads to Harper and Ethan having sex again, and both spouses seem to leave Sicily happily.
Here, Fahey breaks down her thoughts on the ending, Daphne and Ethan’s journey, and more.
Why do you think Daphne is so likable, even though he’s probably the most manipulative character on the show?
I think her manipulation is not evil. I think she’s sympathetic in a kind of surprising way. When you first meet Daphne, you really think she’s just a passive housewife who doesn’t happen to be a lot, and then, I think it’s for someone to be as sunny as Daphne – and then it’s also someone who basically tells this girl that she doesn’t know very well that her son might belong To her coach, not her husband – it’s the dynamic that’s being created within that space that I think makes her a really interesting character.
Let’s talk about that moment. Do you think Daphne knew she was showing Harper a picture of her kids and not the coach?
I definitely do. I don’t think there was any accident. That whole speech and that photo and all that, I think was very intentional.
Cameron made a face in the mirror when Daphne invited him to come and talk to the kids. Do you think Cameron knows they might not be his kids?
I doubt it, but I love this look. Obviously when we filmed him, I couldn’t see what he was doing. So when I watched him that day, I thought he was really scary and cool that he puts a smile on his face before he walks out.
We asked Will what he thinks happened between Daphne and Ethan. what do you think?
What will he say?
I do not want to tell you! Obviously that is up for interpretation but what are your thoughts?
I definitely think something happened. I don’t know exactly what happened, but I do know it was something. Honestly, at that moment, I think Daphne just saw this broken guy and wanted to do something to make him feel more powerful in her weird way. I really don’t think it led him there to get back at Cameron or Harper. Someone said something really interesting the other day, which was like, Do you think part of Daphne’s grief comes from her betrayal with Harper? I was like, completely. I think she went through this with Cameron who knows how many times, but I think she really thought maybe Harper was her friend, or wanted her to be. She has that vulnerable moment in Episode 3 where they are at Noto, and she talks about how she has a hard time keeping female friends and stuff. So, I think that was part of the experience but yeah, I don’t know I can say exactly what happened, but I definitely think something sexual for sure.
Do you think cheating, in some way, made marriages stronger? Strange to think, but did Daphne and Cameron save Harper and Ethan’s marriage?
I think drawing is really interesting. I think at the end of it, basically what you have is Ethan, who’s like, “What have I done?” Before that, you had Harper who was like, “What happened You are Did?” And then they fight about it, and it kind of kind of brings them back together and reconnects them in that way that they’ve been dying to reconnect. So I think it’s interesting, in the end, that kind of ghost dynamic that exists for Cameron and Daphne is the thing that brings Harper together.
As for who “won” the season, many believe it’s Mia (Beatrice Grani), but some say it’s Daphne. what do you think?
interesting! I totally understand why they said Mia, because she’s the one who came in and was like, “What I want to do is play the piano,” and the one who left was like, “Now I play the piano.” She felt so good that she had achieved her thing. But so did Lucia [Simona Tabasco]. I got her money!
Daphne finally gives such a great speech to Ethan. What do you think of what she said about not having to know someone fully?
I remember reading that, and thinking how special that was – because it’s really true. You can spend every second with someone and still not know everything about them. Perhaps this is not the point. Someone was telling me the other day that Esther Beryl was like, “The key to liking passion is mystery” or something. You have to have a little bit of that in order to maintain interest in someone over a number of years. It’s kind of interesting the anatomy.
How was that filmed?
Even though I did a lot of scenes with Will, I only got a chance to really do that scene, just talking to his face, but he really impressed me when we shot that scene. He was an active listener, and I felt like he was very present. And I thought, “Wow, that’s how I feel sitting across from you when you’re not talking? I wonder what it’s like for us when we really exchange words.” It’s very cool.
The facial expressions she makes in this scene are incredible. You show more emotion on your face in 10 seconds than many people do in a monologue.
Well, Mike White is one of the best directors you can imagine working with. I think he just told me to take my time. And like I said, Will was so beautiful that I felt so attached to him. Mike was really specific with his notes and stuff. It wasn’t a scene that I planned too much in advance, because I’d worked enough with Mike at that point to know I’d better show up without doing too much of it, without having any idea in my head of what I wanted it to be. I just wanted to find him together.
How long did it take?
I do not remember. I never felt rushed with Mike, but I never felt like we were shooting everything. Sometimes you’re on set and the director wants to do 15 takes of one thing and you’re like, this is driving me crazy. But he never did. It was always like a few shots and then a different size on the lens and then we’d move on. The pace of the group was always very good.
How was the filming done in Sicily? How did you collect all the bonds?
We had a lot of group dinners at first because the hotel wasn’t running at full capacity. So you can eat at the hotel if you want to, but it was like a limited menu. We were so excited to be there that we wanted to go explore and there wasn’t much that was open. There were only a few places, so group dinners were our first foray into bonding, and then things progressed from there. We’d go out dancing and go to the beach all day. Dinner was, I believe, the original connective tissue.
Who is the life of the party?
Theo sure. Me too! And then when Leo [Woodall] He got there, he was too. So, Theo and Leo!
We had to see Beatrice sing a bunch. Obviously, it’s no secret that you can sing. Was there any discussion of having a karaoke night or something for Daphne to show off her singing voice?
No, I don’t think any of the people on the show knew I sang! Can you imagine? What will Daphne’s karaoke song be? Someone asked me once, and I thought of Beyoncé’s “Ego.” That’s good, right!
The last question. Who is more likely to have a happy ending – Daphne or Sutton, your character being of the “daring type”?
Maybe Daphne! She is just bent on owning one. She made a choice, and Daphne keeps track of the choices she makes. So I trust it will find its way. Sutton is a little emotional!
This interview has been edited and condensed.
For more “The White Lotus” coverage, read our interviews with Jennifer Coolidge (Tanya), Will Sharpe (Ethan), Adam DiMarco (Albie), and Haley Lu Richardson (Portia). Read the season finale recap here, and the series’ high ratings here!
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