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'How to Get Away With Murder' premiere: Who killed [SPOILER]? Creator Pete Nowalk talks all the twists!

[SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN'T WATCHED THE PREMIERE OF HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER!!!]

One of the most anticipated new series of the fall, the Shonda Rhimes-produced How to Get Away With Murder, delivered a rollercoaster of a premiere that included the reveal of two dead bodies: Sam, (Tom Verica), the husband of Annalise Keating (Viola Davis), and Lila, one of Sam’s students. Who are the killer(s)? When will the mystery be solved? What would a season two of HTGAWM look like? EW sat down with the series’ creator Pete Nowalk and grilled him for answers!

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: There are two dead bodies revealed in the premiere—Annalise’s husband Sam and his student Lila. Will we find out their killers by the end of the first season? Or is this going to be like The Killing?
PETE NOWALK: By the end of the first season you’ll find out who killed both of those people and why. Obviously we’ve all learned a lot of lessons from The Killing. You have to move story along faster. It gives you a huge challenge for season two but you just figure it out and that’s the fun part.

I want to people to know and by the end of the second ep this will become more clear but the one body leads to the second body. Lila’s body will lead to Sam’s body.

What can you tease about the season?
I will say this: I think the central relationship of the show in this weird way is Wes and Annalise. I think the first season will be about the education of both of them and each of them teaching each other things that are surprising to each of them. The teacher learns from the students.

It sounds like no one is who they seem.
Yes. I think it’s just the way you meet them in life. Yeah I want it to be an engaged viewing experience, like we show our masks but when we go home there’s a different thing under the mask. If people are like, “Oh Michaela is sort of type A and an overachiever, there’s more to that than meets the eye.”

Is it possible some of these characters will die?
That’s always possible. But we have a dead body—we have two actually. It’s about figuring out how those people died.

This is something you should know: the first few episodes we’re gonna focus on the students. We’ll learn more about each of the students.

Will every episode have a flash forward to the night of Sam’s death?
It’s kind of just like the pilot. But yeah we keep going and we tell a story over the course of the night. We’ll find out things that we thought seemed one way that actually were another way.

Will the flash forwards and the present catch up at the very end of the season?
Right now it’s going to catch up before then because I think there’s a lot of interest how that happened. But also what happens after.

We don’t know where Annalise or Frank or bonnie were on the night of murder.
Right. We’ll find out. Eventually you’ll see every character in the flash-forward.

Do you know what season two would be?
Yeah. But in order for me to tell you that you would need to know a lot of what happens. The great thing about what happens to these kids and Annalise is that’s something that changes you for life so there’s ripple effects that can give us seasons and seasons.

So it’s not a series that will reboot completely, like True Detective or American Horror Story?
No.

So season two would involve…
Annalise. I’ll tell you that because who would kill off Viola Davis?

Watch this, DVR that: Your guide to Thursday's perfect night of TV

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In our fall TV preview, we broke down each day into what to watch live and what to DVR. Here’s your Fall Thursday night game plan:

8 p.m.
Watch: The Vampire Diaries (The CW): When we return to Mystic Falls for season 6, it’s going to be nothing like the Mystic falls we’re used to, with both Damon and Bonnie long gone and vampires banned from town. Premieres Oct. 2.

DVR: Grey’s Anatomy (ABC): Season 11 kicks off with what’s bound to be a lot of drama, as Meredith and Derek are debating a move to D.C., Callie and Arizona have a 50/50 chance of staying together, and there’s a new head of cardio who just happens to be Mer’s sister and the daughter Ellis Grey gave up for adoption.

 

9 p.m.
Watch: Scandal (ABC): Where in God’s name is Olivia Pope? That’s the question on everyone’s mind heading into tonight’s season 4 premiere, which picks up after the fixer fled D.C. for what seems to be a tropical locale with no shortage of wine.

DVR: Gracepoint (Fox): The 10-episode series follows a detective duo (Anna Gunn and David Tennant) and their investigation into the murder of a young boy in a small town. Premieres Oct. 2.

10 p.m.
Watch: How to Get Away With Murder (ABC): The series premiere of Shonda Rhimes’ latest offering, which stars Viola Davis as criminal defense professor Annalise Keating who teaches a class called, you guessed it, “How to Get Away With Murder.”
DVR: 
Parenthood (NBC): We know there’s a “big event” in store for the Bravermans in the season 6 premiere — one that will probably make you shed a tear or two.

 

Shonda Rhimes and her stars fire back at 'New York Times' critic

Shonda Rhimes was not pleased with Allesandra Stanley’s Thursday New York Times piece on How to Get Away With Murder. More specifically, she wasn’t pleased with Stanley’s declaration that Rhimes hasredefined the “angry black woman” stereotype through characters like Scandal‘s Olivia Pope and Grey’s Anatomy‘s Dr. Miranda Bailey.

“Ms. Rhimes has embraced the trite but persistent caricature of the Angry Black Woman, recast it in her own image and made it enviable. She has almost single-handedly trampled a taboo even Michelle Obama couldn’t break,” writes Stanley, who goes on to make broad claims about black women on television from Phylicia Rashād’s Claire Huxtable to Nicole Beharie’s Lt. Abbie Mills (whom she calls a “sidekick”). Stanley even declares that Viola Davis, who stars in the Rhimes-produced How to Get Away With Murder, is “less classically beautiful” than some other black women on television, such as Kerry Washington and Halle Berry.

Not only did the article generate dozens of passionate think pieces, Rhimes decided to tweet out her own passionate response as well. Scandal‘s Josh Malina and Kerry Washington weighed in too.

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First look: Viola Davis gets fierce in 'How to Get Away with Murder' premiere

ABC’s new drama is going to teach you How to Get Away with Murder… sort of.

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See how ABC is promoting Shonda Rhimes' Thursday takeover

As if the one-two punch of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal on one night wasn’t enough, this fall Shondaland will air three shows on Thursdays—otherwise known as “TGIT.”

In a new promo for the all-Shonda Rhimes night of television, ABC uses the casts of Grey’s, Scandal, and new drama How to Get Away with Murder to tout the block’s new slogan: Thank God It’s Thursday. It’s a nice nod to the network’s old Friday night TGIF block and even NBC’s former Thursday night domination with Must-See TV.

Are you ready for three hours of Shondaland? Watch the promo below:
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The leading ladies of ShondaLand preview your Thursday night

Starting September 25, Shonda Rhimes fans are going to get three straight hours of OMG moments… every week. On the ABC line-up, Thursdays this fall will consist of Grey’s Anatomy at 8 p.m., Scandal at 9 p.m., and How to Get Away With Murder at 10 p.m. And to preview the big night, the women of ShondaLand created a promo to tease their upcoming seasons.

In the video, Rhimes is joined by stars Ellen Pompeo, Kerry Washington, and Viola Davis, who divulge a total of zero spoilers while talking about their strong female characters—though they do give Davis, their newest addition, a bit of advice: “Buckle up!”

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ABC's new fall shows: A snap judgment

Superheroes and fairy tales dominated the midseason lineup at ABC’s upfront presentation, with shows like Galavant and Marvel’s Agent Carter coming soon. “We may be a terrible network,” joked Jimmy Kimmel, “but we are a great birthday party for a 6-year-old.” But for fall, ABC stuck to the basics: broad comedies, police procedurals, and Shonda Rhimes, whom ABC Entertainment Group president Paul Lee described as the Charles Dickens of our generation. Her latest show, How to Get Away With Murder, isn’t exactly Great Expectations, but it might be the only new ABC series worth watching. Quick takes on the others follow below. READ FULL STORY

Viola Davis to star in Shonda Rhimes' 'How To Get Away With Murder' pilot

Academy Award-nominated actress Viola Davis will star in ABC’s upcoming pilot How to Get Away With Murder, produced for the network by ABC Studios and Shondaland (Grey’s Anatomy producer Shonda Rhimes’ production company.)

Davis will play Professor Annalise Dewitt on the legal thriller, which focuses on ambitious law students and their mysterious criminal defense professor (Davis). Things start to go awry when both students and teacher become entangled in a murder plot that could cause drastic ramifications to their university and alter the course of each of their lives.

Peter Nowalk (Grey’s Anatomy) will pen the script for the drama and will also executive produce alongside Rhimes on the show.

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