'Homecoming' Season 2: Meet the cast of Amazon's thriller as Janelle Monáe takes over from Julia Roberts

This season picks up the story right after Julia Roberts' character Heidi Bergman finds Walter Cruz working at the diner but this time around the mystery revolves around "Jackie", played by Janelle Monáe

                            'Homecoming' Season 2: Meet the cast of Amazon's thriller as Janelle Monáe takes over from Julia Roberts
Stephan James and Janelle Monae (IMDb)

While the show's first season dealt with what was happening inside the claustrophobic 'Homecoming Initiative' facility, in season 2 we step into the natural world outside with people trying to get inside the Geist headquarters for different reasons.

This season also introduces a new lead character, Jackie, who meets Walter Cruz. Cruz returns to the series along with Audrey Temple, the assistant at Geist Group, who cleans up after Colin Belfast. Season 2 will also feature Geist CEO Leonard Geist and a high-ranking military official named Francine Bunda.

Here's a closer look at the cast:

Janelle Monáe

Janelle Monáe in 'Homecoming' Season 2 (IMDb)

Janelle Monáe, 34, is an American singer, songwriter, rapper, and producer and is seen as part of the Afrofuturism movement. She began her acting career in the critically acclaimed 2016 film 'Hidden Figures' as NASA mathematician and aerospace engineer Mary Jackson, and also starred in 'Moonlight' in the same year. Monáe also appeared in the episode 'Autofac' of the 2017 anthology series 'Electric Dreams', based on the work of Philip K. Dick. Monáe has stated that she identifies with both bisexuality and pansexuality and usually rocks a signature tuxedo style in classic white and black patterns.

In season 2 of 'Homecoming', she plays Jackie, a military veteran, who wakes up in a canoe in the middle of a lake with no recollection of how she got there — or who she is. Jackie's search, to figure out who she is, draws her into the ambit of the Geist Group and their 'Homecoming' initiative. Her search also leads her to Walter Cruz, who is still working at the diner that Heidi Bergman found him in last season. 

Stephan James

Stephan James in 'Homecoming' Season 2 (IMDb)

Stephan James, 26, is a Canadian actor, who starred in several television shows as a teenager. His break out moment came when he starred as the track and field sprinter Jesse Owens in the 2016 film 'Race', for which he won a Canadian Screen Award. In 2018, he starred in Barry Jenkins' drama 'If Beale Street Could Talk', based on James Baldwin's novel of the same name. He has received a Golden Globe Award nomination for portraying Walter Cruz, the military vet, who loses his memories of the war after ingesting Geist's memory-erasing drug in 'Homecoming' Season 1.

At the end of season 1, Heidi Bergman (Julia Roberts), after regaining some of her memories, tracks down Walter Cruz, who was her patient at the facility. At the end of season 1, we are unsure if Walter has regained his memories. He does not seem to recognize Heidi but rearranges her cutlery in a slightly askew manner, just like how he used to rearrange the stationery in her office. Walter returns in Season 2 and we know that Jackie meets up with Walter and will exhibit symptoms similar to him -- the effects of the Geist memory-erasing drug. 

Hong Chau

Hong Chau in 'Homecoming' Season 2 (IMDb)

Hong Chau, 41, is best known for her appearance in the 'Downsizing' (2017) where she played a Vietnamese amputee and political activist, Ngoc Lan Tran. This performance earned her nominations for the Golden Globe Award for 'Best Supporting Actress' and the Screen Actors Guild Award for 'Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role'. She was also nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for 'Best Female Lead' for her role in 'Driveways' (2019). 

She has also appeared on TV shows like the critically-acclaimed 'Treme' (2010–2013) and the HBO show 'Watchmen', besides 'Homecoming' Season 1. Chau was born to Vietnamese parents who lived in a refugee camp in Thailand after fleeing Vietnam in the late 1970s. A Vietnamese Catholic church in New Orleans, Louisiana, arranged for a family to sponsor Chau and her family. After growing up in New Orleans, Chau majored in film studies at Boston University and pursued an acting career.

Chau reprises her role as Audrey Temple, the assistant at the Geist Group, who had established herself in a leadership role in season 1. She has Colin Belfast sign the paperwork in which he takes the blame for not following protocols at the 'Homecoming' facility. She was also seen using the Geist drug like a perfume roller on her wrists when she feels anxious. Season 2 has Temple play a prominent role who has a connection with Jackie since we see her kissing her as balloons fall around them in the show's trailer. We also see her interacting with Geist CEO, Leonard Geist, and the military official, Francine Bunda. 

Joan Cusack

Joan Cusack and Hong Chau in 'Homecoming' Season 2 (IMDb)

Joan Cusack, 57, is known as a brilliant character actor and comedian. She has received Oscar nominations for supporting roles in two romantic comedies, 'Working Girl' (1988), and 'In & Out' (1997). She voiced Jessie, in the 'Toy Story' franchise, and Abby Mallard in 'Chicken Little'. Cusack was also a cast member of 'Saturday Night Live' between 1985-86. She starred on the Showtime hit 'Shameless' as Sheila Jackson, a role for which she has received five consecutive Primetime Emmy Award nominations, winning in 2015. In 'Homecoming' Season 2, Cusack plays a top military official who is interested in Geist's memory-erasing drug. The trailer shows her hobnobbing with Leonard Geist and Audrey Temple.   

Chris Cooper 

Chris Cooper in 'Homecoming' Season 2 (IMDb)

With an illustrious career, Chris Cooper needs no introduction. He won both the Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for 'Best Supporting Actor' for his role as John Laroche in the 2002 film 'Adaptation'. He most recently appeared in 'Little Women' as the gruff Mr. Lawrence. On 'Homecoming' Season 2, he plays the mysterious Leonard Geist, the CEO of the Geist company, who was absent in season 1. We finally get to meet the man behind the plant extract that is used to create Geist's memory-erasing drug. What he will do after Colin Belfast becomes the fall guy for the Department of Defense investigations is anyone's guess.   

'Homecoming' Season 2 will be available to stream on Hulu on May 22.

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