ABC/Colleen Hayes

Daddy's home...and pretty unstable!

No, we're still not done obsessing over Revenge's season three finale, which caused us to dent the floor with how hard our jaw hit it when it was revealed that Emily's (Emily VanCamp) believed-to-be-dead father, David (James Tupper, who will be a series regular [!]), has been alive and in hiding this entire time. Gamechanger? Yes. Risky move? Yes. Worth it? Hell yes. 

We sat down with executive producers Gretchen Berg and Aaron Harberts at the 2014 ATX TV Festival in Austin to chat about the ABC hit's bold decision to bring David back from the dead (Not like he was ever actually dead, but you know what we mean!) and what it will mean for Emily and Victoria (Madeleine Stowe), the love who betrayed him.

"The show had reached a point where it was collapsing in on itself because with the Initiative, we tried to go bigger," Berg explained. "It didn't seem to work as well, it didn't feel intimate, so we were running out of people for revenge and unless we were able to turn the show on its ear and make a big, big splash and change…it made it exciting for all of us to move forward."

And it reinvigorated Emily's storyline, especially after she had finally achieved her goal of exacting revenge on the Graysons, Harberts said, "It's Emily's time to realize she did this in the name of her father, was that the right thing to do? Is he happy about that or is he disappointed? It's going to be a father-daughter relationship season.

"The character of Emily is so central to the show and after three years of exploring her through that lens of revenge, the staff was like what new element in can come into her life that will shake her up completely and allow us to force Emily to find out who Amanda is and we realized it's her father," Harberts continued. "Bringing David back, he's the one character out there who could really push a lot of her buttons. For us, we're always looking to do new dynamics and find something new." 

And David's return will completely rock Emily's world, with Berg previewing, "The drive of season four will be Emily discovering who Amanda Clarke is and Emily figuring out her new life with her father in it. I don't want to say when she's going to discover it that, but that's going to be our arc for the season."



Of course, she won't be the only Hamptonite impacted by David's return from the dead.

"When Victoria discovers that David is back, is her first reaction terror because maybe he knows that she betrayed him?" Harberts teased. "What did David know? What is he aware of?" Berg added, "Who's telling the tale to David as to what went down after he went to prison?"

But Victoria could end up using David to her advantage to exact revenge on Emily, who had her committed to a mental institution by finale's end after the Grayson matriarch finally discovered her real identity.

"He may not be the most emotionally and psychologically stable and if Victoria is the first person to get to David, she might be in control of that guy, which sort of presents her power running through the season," Harberts said, while Berg said Emily and Victoria will engage in "a fun race to David." 

And the race kicks off when Revenge returns on Sunday, Sept. 28 on ABC.

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