Good Golly, Miss Molly
BY Dan Avery
June 25 2008 12:00 AM ET
Your own daughter, Matilda, is only 4. Is working on the series forcing you to think about the birds-and-the-bees talk already? I think I have a little time. [Laughs] But you can't help but personalize the story. I want to be there for her when the time comes, no matter what she came to me to talk about. I still remember going through all that stuff as a teenager myself.
Given her predicament, I guess we can assume Amy is straight. Are we going to see any gay classmates or parents? I think I can tell you this—I checked with [executive producer] Brenda [Hampton] and she said it was OK. Amy ultimately decides to put the baby up for adoption, and one of the families she interviews is a gay couple. Brenda knows my politics, so when told me I started jumping up and down and screaming “Oh, my God! Really?” It’s so cool that any show is going there, but especially one on ABC Family, which still has a huge Christian demographic. The show is really representative of what’s out there—the different issues teens face and the different kinds of teens you find in high school today. Obviously, gay kids are a part of that whole fabric, so it would make sense for there to be a gay student on the show at some point.
On the other hand, your neighbors on the show are a perky Christian family who are too wholesome for words. Are they the butt of all the jokes? I call them "the Blond Christians." Josie Bisset from Melrose Place is the mom and John Schneider plays the dad. The family doesn’t share the same values my character does—or I do—but they’re not caricatures. They’re presently fairly, which I think makes it more powerful. But we do get to have some fun with them.
Is it difficult getting back into a regular gig after taking some time off? I haven’t really taken any time off, it’s just what I’ve been doing hasn’t been seen by the vast majority of people. [Laughs] But that’s what happens when you do theater. Honestly, the show kind of came out of the blue for me. I was planning on moving to Los Angeles anyway because my husband is attending Stanford in the fall, and I knew I couldn’t live in Palo Alto. After doing so much theater for the last 10 years, I'm pretty excited to be working on a series, where my schedule is more normal and I can spend more time with my family. I'm sure after a while I'll want to do more stage work. But I'd like to do another movie too and maybe direct -- and learn how to play the ukulele. I'm eyeing one on eBay right now.