There are few words that can make us more excited for a modern TV show than “guest-starring Gillian Anderson.” Between The Crown, American Gods, Hannibal, and more, Anderson has become one of television’s most welcome drop-ins, simultaneously funny, enigmatic, and austere. Now she’ll be bringing those same qualities to Hulu’s historical dramedy The Great, playing the mother of Elle Fanning’s Catherine, and, it honestly sounds, well…great. (Sorry, there’s just no other word.)
Per Deadline, Anderson will be playing Johanna Elisabeth of Holstein-Gottorp, princess of Anhalt-Zerbst, and a prominent 18th century matchmaker. Joanna (as she’s apparently being spelled for the show) has caught wind of what her daughter has been up to re: overthrowing the Russian government, and decides to swing into town to check it out. (Will there be intrigue, mysterious motivations, and a lot of steely glances? Why the hell would you cast Gillian Anderson in this part if there wasn’t?)
Created by Tony McNamara, The Great dropped its first season on Hulu a year ago tomorrow, and gained quick acclaim for its deft blending of historical fact and “Things we thought were interesting or funny” additions. No word yet on when we can expect the second season, and whatever amazing wig Anderson’s going to be wearing in it, to arrive.