‘Mayans M.C.’ Showrunner Elgin James Reveals He Knows ‘Exactly’ How Series Will End: ‘We Have Been Headed There For a While’

Joseph Lucero, Elgin James and Edward James Olmos 'Mayans M.C.' season 4 premiere held at Goya Studios on April 18, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.
Mark Von Holden for Variety

Executive producer Elgin James and the stars of “Mayans M.C.” attended the FX biker drama’s fourth season premiere at Goya Studios in Los Angeles on Monday night.

Set in the same universe as FX’s “Sons of Anarchy,” the series follows the lives of brothers Ezekiel “EZ” (JD Pardo) and Angel Reyes (Clayton Cardenas), who are members of the motorcycle gang Mayans M.C. on the California/Mexico border.

At the end of the third season, the Reyes brothers and their Santo Padre charter found themselves under attack by other Mayans M.C. factions and on the brink of war with their once-allies Sons of Anarchy’s SAMCRO gang.

“This season, the demons are at the door,” James told Variety. “The demons are at the gate and they break in. Our characters, our actors, our crew, they bled themselves into this. It’s incredible to be on set and see. It’s overwhelming.”

James, who became the sole showrunner for “Mayans M.C.” after creator Kurt Sutter’s departure following the second season, explained that season three had felt like a reset for the series.

“That was always Kurt’s idea,” James said. “Kurt was always an incredible mentor that way. He knew that he wanted to create this bridge between ‘Sons of Anarchy’ and ‘Mayans’ and I credit the audience and I credit the network and the studio because when people got over that bridge into Season 3, it was a completely different place.”

Though James didn’t speculate on how many seasons he thought were in store for “Mayans M.C.”, he revealed that he has a clear idea of how the show will conclude and he has shared his vision for the ending with members of the cast.

“We know where it ends,” he told Variety. “I know the very last shot. So, it’s not in Season 4 so I’m just going to say, there at least has to be one more. But we know exactly where it ends and we have been headed there for a while now.”

James went on to say that he had the show’s ending in mind for some time but hesitated to reveal it until the third season. “I wasn’t able to verbalize it or I was too scared to verbalize it until last season,” he explained. “I was like, by the way, this is how it all ends. First, I told the actors, so they know. They know where this ends and the studio and the network are starting to get a sense of where it ends but we’ll see if it’s Season 5 or Season 15.”

Pardo told Variety that he was excited for fans to see how the characters would face the consequences of their actions in the fourth season.

“EZ Reyes had an idea about becoming one king,” he said. “And it backfires and so Season 4 is a dark time but what I love about it and what sort of resembles life is that in those dark times, you learn who you are.”

Pardo drew a parallel between the challenges faced by the characters and the uncertainty that he experienced after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In the beginning, not being essential, not having a job, wondering what’s going to happen,” he said. “It was a dark time. And when you strip everything away to sit with yourself and learn about yourself and look at the things that you don’t like and trying to remember those things that you had forgotten that you wanted to do. I love the growth that those characters have due to that dark time.”

Pardo told Variety that he had an idea of how “Mayans M.C.” will end but wouldn’t elaborate further. “I will say that I am so looking forward to it,” he said. “I feel like there is no other way.”

Cardenas explained that the fourth season will further explore the relationship between EZ and Angel. He told Variety, “I think you see the brotherhood even deeper because I think these two guys, we go through things that nobody else has experienced and only we can understand.”

He added, “I think that when two people experience things that are so abnormal in life, there’s an allowance. Our shields are down now and we can talk about real shit.”

As for the series’ eventual conclusion, Cardenas said, “I think we are all very happy with where it’s ending and I think the story is coming to an artistic, satisfying end. All the artists that are heavily involved, they are understanding and they also are respectful of the art that has been done already. The audience wants more but the artist knows it’s time to come out and tell a full arc. A full arc, that’s all you need.”

Following the screening of the fourth season’s first episode, attendees enjoyed a lively afterparty in the event space, which was lit in bright red and decorated with hundreds of flameless candles as well as votive candles bearing the images of the show’s cast.

A DJ spun Latin music hits and guests sipped on cocktails and snacked on passed hors d’oeuvres, including Mexican street corn and mini quesadillas.

The first two episodes of Mayans M.C.’s fourth season will premiere April 19 on FX.

Pictured above: Joseph Lucero, Elgin James and Edward James Olmos.