How Vice Principals Season 2 Is Different From Season 1, According To Danny McBride

gamby lee and dale dickey on vice principals

One of TV's most insane comedies is finally coming back, as HBO's Vice Principals will soon be here to wrap up its glorious two-season run. While it will be hard for Season 2 to overshadow some of the madness that we watched last summer -- particularly 90% of Walton Goggins' time on-screen -- we can't wait to see what goes down. CinemaBlend spoke with star and co-creator Danny McBride earlier this year, and he shared with me why Season 2 will feel quite different from Season 1 in some ways.

It's one story, but we really looked at both seasons thematically as kind of two different stories. And that was even done in the interest of having Jody [Hill] direct the first season and David [Gordon Green] direct the second. We even swapped out some cinematographers for both seasons. So, you know, both seasons have a very unique distinct feel to them, but they are both telling the same story. We do a lot of crazy shit in the second season that I'm really excited for people to check out. And I think, about the nature of the story that unfolds in the second season, I think it'll be cool for people to see where it all ends up.

That's a very cool way for Vice Principal to handle things, as far as attempting to make each season feel like it has a unique vision, despite telling the same interconnected story of two school administrators that are power-hungry to the point of sociopathy. Especially when they actually produced and filmed both seasons back-to-back, which made some things easier, such as continuity, and other things harder, such as having to spend double the time putting it together than they would have by separating the seasons.

Much like Danny McBride and Jody HIll's Eastbound & Down did before the duo moved on to their second HBO collaboration, Vice Principals Season 1 had a very cinematic feel that made the story feel like it was far bigger than what was essentially an over-the-top revenge tale. Sometimes, the scope of the show made the comedy larger than life, and other times, it made viewers question if this was even really a comedy. (At least it did for me, since things got quite dark quite often.)

So it'll be interesting to take note of what feels different when Season 2 kicks off with David Gordon Green behind the camera. (Not to mention with a different cinematographer.) While Jody Hill is known solely for comedy efforts, Green started out making super-series films like George Washington before jumping into stoner farce with Pineapple Express and then jumped back into drama for Joe and others, with his upcoming film Stronger centering on the Boston Marathon bombing. It's never easy to tell what you'll get from Green, so maybe Danny McBride and Walton Goggins' madcap antics will look even more dramatic in Season 2. That can't be good for Kimberly Herbert Gregory's Dr. Belinda Brown, unless she's the one seeking true revenge in this season.

belinda brown vice principals

The overall plot details for Season 2 haven't been plentiful, but we know that the major conflict this go-around will involve Danny McBride's Gamby and Walton Goggins' Russell trying to hold onto the power they'd only recently gotten a hold of. For anyone wanting a small tease on how things will end up, especially considering Season 1 ended on Gamby getting shot, Danny McBride told me this.

I think it ends in a way that feels like the logical conclusion to the story we're telling.

Which has to mean "the entire planet will go up in flames," right? Or, at the very least, the school will explode into a billion pieces, with Russell's hands on the detonator.

It's pretty rare for TV shows to use just one filmmaker over the course of an entire season, although it is more common on cable for a show like this, which was fully conceived and created by the same close-knit group of people. Danny McBride and Jody Hill have been working together ever since they made waves with 2006's The Foot Fist Way, and David Gordon Green joined the duo for a bunch of episodes of Eastbound & Down. We love that their collaborative efforts stayed strong, and we're hoping for more in the future, even though it won't come in the form of Vice Principals Season 3.

With new co-star Dale Dickey as Nash, the VP of discipline appointed when Gamby was out recovering, Vice Principals Season 2 will make its big and long-awaited premiere on HBO on Sunday, September 17, at 10:30 p.m. ET. Expect appearances from guest stars such as Scott Caan, Fisher Stevens, Maya Love and Susan Park. To see when everything else is heading to the small screen soon, check out our fall premiere schedule.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.