The Irrational Season 2 Cast and Character Guide


Good news: NBC’s The Irrational will return for Season 2 in the fall of 2024. Even better, most of the cast will be returning.

The Jesse L. Martin-led police procedural stands out in a sea of crime dramas because it focuses on a behavioral scientist who moonlights as an FBI consultant. It is fun, entertaining, and easy to follow.

We’ve got you covered if you’re playing catch-up now that the season has ended.

Our The Irrational Season 2 cast and character guide covers everything you need to know about the characters before you begin this unique series.

How The Irrational Is Different From Other Shows

The Irrational is not purely a police procedural.

Since the main character is a behavioral scientist, neuroscientific principles often come into play when solving each case.

It’s not quite as gimmicky as Elsbeth, where the lead detective’s quirkiness is the backbone of the show, but it does fall into the same genre because it features an amateur sleuth with an unusual ability—in this case, the ability to apply behavioral science to catch criminals.

If you liked 2014’s Perception, you’ll enjoy this series because it has a similar format: the sleuth begins each episode with a lecture in his college classroom that may be relevant to the case of the week. 

Let’s take a look at who the main players are.

Alec Mercer (Jesse L Martin)

Although Alec is best known as a behavioral science professor, he is also a bombing survivor who has PTSD as a result of his near-murder.

He survived a church burning, though he has burn scars on his face and memory issues stemming from the incident.

During the first season, he spent significant time chasing down leads and trying to reconstruct his understanding of what happened on that fateful day.

By the end of the season, he had some answers about how and why the bombing occurred, but trauma doesn’t end when you get those kinds of answers, and it’ll be interesting to find out where Alec’s character goes during Season 2.

Related: 19 Most Moving Mental Health Stories on TV

Alec’s obsessive interest in the case cost him his marriage to Marisa.

He began dating again by the end of the season, but it’s clear that he and Marisa belong together. 

It’s anyone’s guess where he’ll go romantically, especially since these types of relationships aren’t always easy when you’re dealing with PTSD. 

When not consulting for the FBI, Mercer mentors his research assistants and teaches a full course load. It’s impressive that he’s able to do all that, though he probably doesn’t sleep much, given what he’s been through.

Jesse L. Martin, who plays Alec, is a well-known actor today. He played Detective Ed Green on Law & Order and Captain Joe West on The Flash.

However, as a child, he was very shy, partially because he moved to upstate New York from Virginia and was self-conscious about his Southern accent.

A teacher convinced him to join the after-school drama program, and acting helped him overcome his shyness.

The rest is history. Martin became a professional actor, and his breakout role was not on television but on stage when he played Tom Collins in Rent.

That role led to his television career, as producer David E. Kelley was impressed with his performance in Rent and cast him in a recurring role on Ally McBeal.

However, Martin almost ended his career prematurely because of a back injury and had to take medical leave while on The Flash.

Marisa Clark (Maahra Hill)

Marisa is Alec’s ex-wife.

She is currently an FBI agent, and they’re often forced to work together on cases.

While we don’t have all the details about what happened between her and Alec, his inability to cope with the trauma of nearly being killed in a church bombing undoubtedly played a part. 

Related: 23 Couples Who Split for The Sake of Drama

Marisa and Alec have supposedly both moved on, though working in close proximity may stir up feelings again.

They are still friends and are concerned about each other’s safety and well-being.

Maahra Hill is an actress and producer who has had several roles.

Outside of The Irrational, she is best known for her guest spots on Black-ish and How To Get Away With Murder.

She also played the lead on 2021’s Delilah, which was an OWN series about a headstrong lawyer who started her own practice so that she could make her kids her top priority.

Delilah was the type of lawyer who fought for the underdog and took cases big firms were afraid to take.

Unfortunately, the series didn’t last past its eight-episode first season, but Hill got the role on The Irrational soon after it ended.

Kylie Mercer (Travina Springer)

Alec lives with his younger sister, Kylie, who isn’t an official part of the team.

Kylie often thinks Alec is overly obsessed with his work and tries to get him more interested in a life outside of teaching and solving cases, which is usually to no avail.

Related: Current TV Couples Who Perfectly Represent Black Love

She also has strong technical skills and occasionally assists in cases when her expertise is needed.

Kylie is close with Marisa and revealed in the Season 1 finale that she felt like she lost a sister when Alec and Marisa divorced.

Travina Springer is a convert to Islam who helps increase diversity on television with her roles.

She is fluent in American Sign Language and has served as an interpreter as well as supported Vigilance is Love, a grassroots organization dedicated to protecting Muslim communities from the effects of Islamaphobia and hate-based violence.

Springer came to Los Angeles from Florida, where her father was stationed as an Army Intelligence Officer for most of her childhood.

After taking some classes while majoring in communications at Florida State University, she decided to pursue acting.

She is best known for Ms. Marvel, the lead character in a Disney+/Marvel studios teen superhero show, which was also the first in this genre to showcase a Muslim character.

Like Springer herself, her character converted to Islam before the series began.

Phoebe (Molly Kunz)

Good news: Phoebe, Alec’s top research assistant, is returning, even though The Irrational Season 1 Episode 7 suggested otherwise.

Phoebe is ambitious and driven, but she also has anxiety.

During the season finale, she told Alec she had decided to take a job with a different professor who was less likely to put her in life-and-death situations.

Related: The Irrational Season 2: Everything We Know So Far

Alec depends on Phoebe for psychological research that could bolster his understanding of each week’s investigation.

He is also her mentor, and much of his teaching has focused on helping her get out of her comfort zone so she can excel as a behavioral scientist.

On the Phone - The Irrational Season 1 Episode 3

Since she has already taken the new job, she’ll likely work with Alec on cases despite having responsibilities elsewhere.

Conversely, the new professor could be a criminal, leaving Phoebe without a job unless Alec agrees to rehire her.

It could also be interesting for Alec to hire someone new, only for Phoebe to realize she made a mistake by deciding to change jobs.

She could get bored with the safer position she thought she wanted or discover that this professor doesn’t take her as seriously as Alec.

 Molly Kunz, who plays Phoebe, is originally from Madison, Wisconsin. 

This is her first starring role; however, she has been a guest star in various shows, including Chicago Fire, Doubt, and Widow.

Rizwan (Arash Demaxi)

Rizwan, Alec’s other assistant, often comes off as more goofy and unfocused than Phoebe. 

For example, he missed the opportunity to apply for a grant because he had put the wrong date on his calendar and didn’t plan to start his application until 48 hours before it was due.

Rizwan also lacks self-confidence, which Alec tried to correct by asking him to lecture in his place when Alec was busy with a case. 

Related: The Irrational Season 1 Episode 3 Spoilers: Rizwan Gets Caught in the Middle of a Plane Crash

Unfortunately, Rizwan stumbled through his presentation and quickly lost his audience’s interest, though his second attempt at teaching was far better because he gave up trying to sound like an expert and interacted with the class as himself.

Hopefully, Rizwan will gain some confidence during Season 2!

Like Molly Kunz, Rizwan actor Arash Demaxi has never starred in a series before The Irrational.

Ironically, while she guest starred once on Chicago Fire, he did so on Chicago Med Season 6 Episode 10, playing the son of a patient on the outs with his father because he has chosen to become a musician.

That same year, Demaxi guest starred on New Amsterdam as a patient in the hospital when a chemical spill caused chaos.

Who Else Might Appear on The Irrational Season 2?

There will need to be other FBI agents and cops, suspects, and the criminal of the week, so there should be plenty of guest stars and recurring characters.

It would be fun if Jesse L Martin were reunited with any of his Law & Order or The Flash co-stars for an episode!

One character who may not reappear is Rose Mercer, Alec’s love interest.

Related: Love Is In the Air For These TV Couples

Alec went on a date with her that seemed to interfere with his work, and then she returned to Paris, where she will hopefully stay.

Your turn, The Irrational fanatics!

Who is your favorite character?

Is there anyone who you hope leaves during The Irrational Season 2?

Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know.

The Irrational Season 2 will air on NBC on Mondays at 10/9c and stream on Peacock.

Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on X.

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