Rian Johnson recently appeared on the Lights, Camera, Barstool podcast to talk about all things poker face. One of the topics that hosts Jeff Lowe and Jack Kennedy were keen to discuss was how difficult it was to come up with new mysteries as Johnson is also working on the next Knives Out movie alongside his streaming series. Johnson noted that inventing new mysteries has its challenges, but Poker Face is not the TV version of a Knives Out movie.
“While it’s also a mystery, it’s a very different animal from ‘Knives Out’ and ‘Glass Onion,'” Johnson said. “It’s kind of a throwback to the TV shows I grew up watching, like ‘Columbo’ and ‘Rockford Files’ and ‘Magnum PI,’ but it takes a lot from ‘Columbo’.”
Rather than being a crime thriller, Poker Face follows the “howcatchem” format like Columbo. The director explained that the “howcatchem” model in the first act shows a murder and who the killer is. So the episode is about how Natasha Lyonne’s character catches her instead of finding out who it is.
“It’s kind of a chess game between Natasha’s character and the killer,” Johnson said, “to see how she’s going to bring them to justice.”