It’s an All Rise like you’ve never seen — or heard! — before.
In this Tuesday’s episode (OWN, 8/7c), Judge Lola Carmichael dreams of a world where she made different choices, leading her BFF Mark to end up on the bench instead of her. But that’s only one of the big changes in the alternate reality scenario, which finds all of Lola’s loved ones working different jobs and acting like new people.
“We have these versions of ourselves in this dream episode that are so bizarre and so quirky and so fun,” Ruthie Ann Miles, who plays Lola’s judicial assistant Sherri, tells TVLine. “I think the audience is going to have a blast watching these different versions of the characters, especially if they already know and love the show.”
As Lola’s righthand woman, Sherri is often silent in the courtroom, but in this alternate universe, the mild-mannered Sherri transforms into a lawyer with a personality that is “out of control.” “Dream Sherri is objecting left and right, and she knows all of her Latin legal terms,” Miles previews.
While Miles says playing this new iteration of Sherri was “a lot of fun to dive into,” the experience was also a bit nerve-wracking. Upon getting the script, “the first thing that went through my head is, ‘I don’t know who Dream Sherri is,'” Miles recalls. “They were writing these things, and I was like, ‘None of this is Sherri. Sherri would never do that.’ I was so self-conscious [during filming] because none of this lined up with all the character work and groundwork that I had done for years. So I was like, ‘You guys gotta tell me if this is OK,’ and they were like, ‘No, this is funny. Go bigger here, do less, things like that.'”
The episode also provided Miles with the opportunity to sing with her costar Lindsay Mendez, whom she’s known for over a decade from their time on Broadway stages. In the alt world, Lindsay’s character Sara is a law school grad-turned-Las Vegas headliner, and Sherri is a superfan. At their law school reunion, Sara and Sherri belt out “No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)” by Barbra Streisand and Donna Summer, as seen in TVLine’s exclusive sneak peek.
“They had a different song choice at first, and I was like, ‘Oh, OK, that’s a bit obscure ’80s reference. I guess that could be fun,'” Miles shares. “And then they turned around and came back with ‘No More Tears,’ and I was like, ding ding ding. They got us on the nose, because this is Barbra Streisand and Donna Summers. We know these people, we know this song. And it was just like, ‘OK, I know exactly who we are and exactly what we’re playing and exactly what this disco beat is.”
Miles was familiar with the duet, but had never performed it before, and certainly not with the added layer of drunk Sherri on top of it, which “became a whole new level of reintroduction to the song,” the actress says with a laugh.
In the end, the musical moment was a memorable one for Miles because of what it represented for her and Mendez. “For us to be able to get together in the studio, and not only sing together, but have a flavor of our old life together was really meaningful and very special and beyond fun,” Miles gushes.
All Rise fans, press play above on the sneak peek, then hit the comments with your thoughts!