The thing about being one of the leads in a 1980s-set dramedy about lady wrestlers is, your look is still stuck in the Reagan era even after the cameras stop rolling for the day.
“I’m looking at my gel French manicure now, and that, combined with my spray tan, every public place I walk into, I want to clink a glass, like, ‘Ding, ding, ding’ and announce that this is for a character and not from my personal choice,” GLOW‘s Betty Gilpin says, chuckling.
She’s in the middle of shooting the Netflix series’ second season, which means Debbie’s aesthetic (which Gilpin describes as “Malibu Barbie marries Bobby Kennedy, and they go to Miami, but also to have tea with his grandmother”) is in full effect, right down to the thickly white topped tips of her fingers. “You could see it a mile away,” she jokes. “Like, I should be on My Super Sweet 16, screaming at my parents.”
While we had Gilpin on the phone, we politely asked her to tell us everything she could about what Debbie’s up to in Season 2. Read on for some pile-driving scoop about:
RUTH AND DEBBIE’S FRIENDSHIP | “In Season 1, it’s almost easy for them to compartmentalize their friendship and explain away why they have to be together, because of this wrestling show. It’s the perfect excuse for them to be physically near each other, because they really love each other,” Gilpin says. “That becomes harder and harder as time goes on, when they never really had the conversation of ‘Hey, you did this to me. Apologize,’ or Ruth never got to say, ‘These are the ways in which I felt mistreated by you as a friend… It’s getting harder and harder for them to ignore.”
UPPING THE STUNT ANTE | The cast took a lot of wrestling lessons for Season 1; the preparation this time around “was more intense, because we picked up where we left off,” Gilpin reports. “I mean, I just had a wrestling match with a character that won’t be named, and a week later, I still feel like my soul was in a five-car pileup accident — and it feels amazing.”
DEBBIE IN THE DIRECTOR’S CHAIR? | “She does get involved in the behind-the-scenes” of the wrestling show-within-a-show, Gilpin confirms when we ask. “Both her and Ruth share that creativity. They’re both so story-driven and imagination-driven… I think realizing that that can be channeled into a job is eye-opening for [Debbie].”
THE NEW BABIES THAT PLAY RANDY | “We have two new twins this year, Kyler and Kaleb. Nothing makes me feel older than a name like Kyler with a k… I feel like Angela Lansbury,” she says, laughing. “They’re amazing. They’re nuanced and bringing a fresh new energy to things we do.”