Follow TV Tropes


Characters / Mare of Easttown

Go To

    open/close all folders 

Sheehan Family


Marianne "Mare" Sheehan

Portrayed By: Kate Winslet

A detective sergeant in Easttown, Pennsylvania who is investigating the town's murders.

  • Absurdly Youthful Mother: She's only in her mid-40s, but is grandmother to a little boy, a result of teen pregnancies upon teen pregnancies.
  • Action Girl: Is a dedicated cop to the town, meaning that she has no aversion to getting physical with the criminals, including escaping from a psychopath chasing her down with a gun and running through water.
  • Bearer of Bad News: Part of her job as a cop.
  • Berserk Button: Do not lie, yell or mention her son around Mare.
  • Big Eater: She tends to consume a lot of trash, mostly in her car.
  • Cigarette of Anxiety: Tends to vape a lot.
  • Cowboy Cop: Due to Easttown being such a small town where everyone knows everyone, she tends to approach crimes with more of a tough mom approach than a strictly professional manner.
  • Daddy's Girl: Followed into her father's footsteps and became a detective. It's heavily implied that she was a big Daddy's girl to her Dad.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Has a very sharp and dry sense of humor.
  • Death Glare: She has this down to a fine art.
  • Defective Detective: Mare's life is a mess from top to bottom. She has a contentious relationship with her family, she's struggling to keep her grandson under her care, her son died via suicide and even while alive their relationship wasn't the best and to top it off, she can't solve the disappearance of a local girl.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Speeds a lot, though she is a detective.
  • Hardboiled Detective: In a rare female version, Mare. Depressed, cynical, and hard-bitten, but still completely committed to truth and justice? Check. Tragic backstory? Check. Self-destructive behavior? Check. Lives for the case? Check, check, check.
  • Heartbroken Badass: After suffering from her father and son's suicides.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Always drinks after work.
  • In-Series Nickname: Her nickname of "Miss Lady Hawk" from a high school basketball game from her glory days has stuck around, which she hates.
    • "Mare" is also short for Marianne.
  • I Should Have Been Better: Blames herself for her divorce, not finding Katie, and Kevin's suicide.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Mare is undeniably rough around the edges and can be hard to be around on occasion but she's a good person overall and cares deeply about those close to her and about helping those in her community.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: Similar to the above, she is at once deeply cynical and rough and completely committed to the causes of absolute truth and bringing criminals to justice—even at the expense of her personal relationships to her closest friends.
  • Lady Drunk: Is always shown getting drunk after work. Helen also drinks quite a bit.
  • Mama Bear: To the point of planting heroin on her grandson's mother to stop her from getting custody.
  • Married to the Job: As a detective, Mare's work is so all-consuming that she finds it hard to be with Richard.
  • Meaningful Name: 'Mare' shares the same pronunciation as 'mere', the French word for 'mother'. Mare's role as a mother is not only an important plot point but also her mothering role to the whole community.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Her full name is Marianne but everyone calls her Mare. Only her mother calls her Marianne when pissed at her.
  • Only Sane Man: Compared to the residents of Easttown. Colin, when he sees how tact Mare is to everyone.
  • Oral Fixation: Is never without her vape pen. When she's put on administrative leave, she briefly switches back to cigarettes.
  • Perpetual Frowner: She only laughs in episode 5.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: To Colin. Colin is joyful, generally optimistic, by-the-book (Red Oni). Mare is more stoic and hot-blooded (Blue Oni).
  • The Stoic: Is in this state following the suicide of her son, coupled with the disappearance of Katie Bailey and later Erin. When she is communicating with victims though, she is genuinely sympathetic, and puts up a lot of barriers, living in a town where everyone knows everyone.


Helen Fahey

Portrayed By: Jean Smart

Mare's mother.


Siobhan Sheehan

Portrayed By: Angourie Rice

Mare's daughter.

  • Alliterative Name: A double example, since her names both start with the letter S and a "sh" sound.
  • Betty and Veronica: Is torn between her longtime girlfriend Becca, who is aloof and somewhat neglectful of her (the Veronica) and supportive, perky DJ Anne (the Betty).
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Considering she's still dealing with having found Kevin's body following his suicide, you can't really blame her.
  • Broken Bird: Is still suffering from the trauma of finding her brother's body.
  • Cool Uncle: She's a very fun and affectionate aunt to her nephew Drew.
  • Daddy's Girl: Shows shades of this with Frank, whom she is definitely more emotionally open towards than Mare.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: She discovered her brother's body after he killed himself, and when she's impaired she reveals that she resents her mother for it.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She has her moments. It seems to run in the family.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: She's blonde and very friendly.
  • Lipstick Lesbian: Openly gay and very feminine.
  • Nice Girl: Probably the nicest and most sweet-natured of the whole cast.
  • Stepford Smiler: Outwardly good-natured and happy, Siobhan is still struggling deeply with the trauma of Kevin's behavior and suicide, especially since she was the one who found his body and even admits she resents Mare for it.
  • The Un Favourite: Role-inverted. Siobhan clearly has a strained relationship with Mare, and greatly favors her father.


Frank Sheehan

Portrayed By: David Denman

Mare's ex-husband.

  • Amicable Exes: He tries to be this with Mare, but she doesn't make it easy.


Father Dan Hastings

Portrayed By: Neal Huff

Mare's cousin and a priest.

Mare's deceased son, who was struggling with drug abuse and mental illness before committing suicide.
  • Driven to Suicide: He took his own life prior to the events of the series.
  • Hates Their Parent: Completely despised Mare for preventing him from buying drugs.
  • Hollywood Psych: He was diagnosed with various conditions, including Tourette's, and given numerous medications, some of which only made him worse. He also suffered from severe mood swings but is never officially mentioned as having had bipolar disorder or anything similar.
  • Junkie Parent: He and Carrie were regular drug abusers while Drew was born.
  • Mood-Swinger: He suffered from extremely violent mood swings, made worse by his drug addiction.
  • Posthumous Character: Kevin died from suicide two years prior to the series' beginning, but his presence still looms like a large shadow over his family's household. Mare have severe problems even just broaching the subject of his death and the circumstances surrounding it, while Siobhan is trying to process his death through the documentary project she is working on.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: He was once a cheerful and very affectionate kid until his condition started to show.

Ross Family


Lori Ross

Portrayed By: Julianne Nicholson

Mare's closet friend.


John Ross

Portrayed By: Joe Tippett

Lori's husband.

  • Cain and Abel: He attempts to kill Billy and make it look like a suicide. Not because he has a beef with Billy per se, but because he believes it will protect the knowledge of his relationship with Erin from slipping out if he can make Billy take the fall for it and with Billy dead he won't be able to contradict him.
  • Dirty Coward: He is willing to kill and frame his own brother in an attempt to protect his secret about his relationship with Erin. When Mare comes to arrest him, he begs her to kill him so he won't have to sit through the fallout of what he did getting outed.
  • Silent Scapegoat: After the Deceased Fall-Guy Gambit with his brother failed, he willingly takes the blame for Erin's murder himself in order to protect his son.


Billy Ross

Portrayed By: Robbie Tann

John's younger brother.


Ryan Ross

Portrayed By: Cameron Mann

Lori and John's son.

McMenamin Family


Erin McMenamin

Portrayed By: Cailee Spaeny

  • Abusive Parents: Her father is a short tempered and occasionally violent alcoholic who Erin is clearly frightened of. It's mentioned that she once stayed with John and Billy when he was especially bad.
  • Doting Parent: She clearly adores her son DJ.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: According to John, he tried hard to persuade her to have an abortion when she became pregnant with DJ but she refused.
  • Missing Mom: Her mother, who she was close to, died sometime before the series starts.
  • Nice Girl: Erin seems to have been a fairly sweet-natured person who had some terrible things happen to her.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: On the receiving end of a brutal one from Brianna in the first episode.
  • Teen Pregnancy: She was a teenager when she got pregnant, but she does her best to take care of her son.

Easttown Police Department


Chief Carter

Portrayed By: John Douglas Thompson

Mare's boss at the police department.

  • Da Chief: Mare has to answer to him.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Protects Mare as best as he can.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: He's absolutely and justifiably furious with Mare for planting drugs on Carrie. He allows her to simply take time off, attributing it to her recent difficulties, but bluntly tells her part of him wants to make sure she never carries a badge again.


Det. Colin Zabel

Portrayed By: Evan Peters

The county detective who assists Mare with the case.

  • Boom, Headshot!: How he meets his end
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Poor Zabel. He does manage a kiss, though.
  • Fake Ultimate Hero: He read what the P.I. had in his files, and used that to find the missing girl. He failed to mention the P.I's work and is deeply uncomfortable with the praise he got from it.
  • Insecure Love Interest: To Mare. When he goes on a date with her, he is disillusioned to realise that Mare is only going out with him to find out more about the case.
    Zabel: You know what my mom said to me when I was leaving tonight to pick you up? She said, "Mare's only going out with you 'cause she wants to stay close to the case." (Mare starts to leave.) This is the part where you tell me she was wrong.
  • Likes Older Women: His infatuation with Mare quickly becomes obvious.
  • Longing Look: Gives Mare a few of these.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: The Love Triangle with Mare and Richard dissolves after Zabel gets suddenly killed by Mr. Potts.
  • Nice Guy: He's a humble, polite and kind-hearted person. Despite her initial frostiness, Mare is eventually won over by his sincere nature.
  • Number Two: Comes in to be this for Mare.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is joyful, generally optimistic, by-the-book (Red Oni). Mare is more stoic and hot-blooded (Blue Oni).
  • Sacrificial Lion: He is killed near the end of the fifth episode by Mr. Potts, to reveal the evilness of his character and emphasize what's at stake.

Other Residents


Richard Ryan

Portrayed By: Guy Pearce

A creative writing professor.

  • The Charmer: He's a pretty smooth guy who is tough not to like and wins both Mare and Helen over with ease.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Can match Mare in this category pretty easily.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Mare ends up deciding not to pursue a relationship with him just yet, still taking time to process her grief and dealing with her family. He's very understanding and merely jokes that he's in his fifties and lives in Easttown so Mare won't have to worry about much competition in the meantime.
  • Most Writers Are Writers: He is a writer of some fame and now teaches at a nearby college.
  • Nice Guy: He's a very charming and good-natured person and their brief fling is immensely helpful to Mare.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Guy: He is a rare gender-inversion of the trope. His whole arc is to be a love interest to Mare, and to show her how worthy of love she is.
  • Red Herring: Of a sort. He shows up in the first episode just as Erin is murdered and on the one-year anniversary of Katie's abduction and is played by a very well-known actor famous for playing villains. You'd be forgiven for thinking he was being set up as the killer or responsible in some way but Richard never has any ties to the main events and is simply a normal and very likable love interest for Mare.
  • Silver Fox: He's in his fifties with the greying hair to match but is still very handsome and charming.


Carrie Layden

Portrayed By: Sosie Bacon

Drew's mother and Kevin's girlfriend

  • Cassandra Truth: She's absolutely right to suspect that Mare planted drugs on her in order to damage her custody appeal.
  • Doting Parent: For all her flaws, she clearly loves her son.
  • Junkie Parent: She and Kevin were regular drug abusers while Drew was born. This is the main reason that Mare fights so hard for custody of Drew.
  • The Mentally Disturbed: She's a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic, which she self-medicated with her drug addiction, though she is on medication and hasn't had any episodes in over a year by the time of the series.
  • Parents as People: She loves Drew more than anything and wants to be a good mother but her struggles with addiction and mental illness make it near impossible for her to care for him, eventually giving up the custody battle and leaving him with Mare, only asking to make sure Drew knows it wasn't because Carrie didn't love him.
  • Parental Neglect: Is an interesting variation. She has schizophrenia, is on medication and is a known drug-abuser. Her son, Drew, is in Mare's care, since she's in a stable job, has a home and can easily provide for Drew's needs. While Carrie is trying hard to get a job and provide for Drew, she is incredibly antagonistic to Mare, refusing to take any responsibility on the torment she and Kevin gave to Mare for years.
  • Pet the Dog: By the end of the series, she admits Drew is better off with Mare and drops the custody challenge, only asking Mare to make sure he knows it was because of her issues and not because she didn't love him.
  • Recovered Addict: She's just out of rehab at the start of the series. It sadly doesn't last.
  • Struggling Single Mother: Tries to kick her drug habit to gain custody of Drew. The habit proves too hard to mitigate, and she relapses near the end of the series, dropping the custody challenge.


Deacon Mark Burton

Portrayed By: James McArdle

  • Pedophile Priest: Zigzagged. It is revealed that he was forced by the church to move to a new congregation due to rumors of him having had an inappropriate relationship with a 14-year-old girl, but he denies that anything criminal happened and claims that the church's own internal investigation cleared him of all charges. It also turns that he is being truthful when he says that didn't had an inappropriate relationship with Erin.


Dylan Hinchey

Portrayed By: Jack Mulhern

  • Dirty Coward: When the mother of his baby is being attacked, Dylan stands there and doesn't stop it.
  • Improbably Cool Car: He’s a broke teenager who can’t come up with $1800 for his son’s ear surgery, but he drives a perfectly restored 70s Ford Bronco.
  • Jerkass: He's generally rude, dismissive and unpleasant to Erin and Brianna, not lifting a finger to help when Erin is brutally attached by Brianna, to the point that you wonder why either girl ever pined for him and why Brianna was so protective of her relationship with him.
  • Pet the Dog: After learning that DJ isn't his son, Dylan is initially apprehensive towards him. Later, he holds him and initially goes along with his mother's suggestion to keep the boy. However, even after Lori Ross gains custody of DJ, Dylan still goes over to her house to give him his toy. This is perhaps Dylan's one redeeming trait.


Brianna Delrasso

Portrayed By: Mackenzie Lansing

  • Didn't Think This Through: It seemingly never occured to her that her vicious assault of Erin might have negative consequences for herself.
  • Fiery Redhead: Has red-hair, matching her red-hot temper.
  • Generation Xerox: Is just as ruthless and awful as her father Tony.
  • Hate Sink: She's volatile, abrasive and generally horrible to pretty much everyone she speaks to and is the only person in the series never to have any redeeming or sympathetic moments.
  • Jerkass: She (and her father) are violent, hot-tempered people with zero redeemable qualities.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Her brutal attack of Erin gets her an assault charge and loses her a spot in her college of choice.
  • Kick the Dog: She catfished Erin and got her to open up to her intimately, only to draw her into an ambush and violently attack her. She also brings up Kevin to insult Mare, saying "no wonder your son killed himself!"
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Violently attacks and beats up Erin in the pilot.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: It turns out brutally assaulting someone in front of numerous witnesses is really bad idea as it gets Brianna charged with assault, makes her an immediate suspect in the murder and loses her a spot in college.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: Brianna is this to Erin, even though Erin has to speak to Dylan, as they're co-parenting a child together.