Though many may think that Awkward. has been born of the “Juno movement” that stemmed in the last few years, turning the popular kids of film and television on their head to showcase a smarter, even if sometimes snarkier underdog, series creator Lauren Iungerich shared with television critics in Los Angeles today that it really only came from within her own head. She drew on some personal experiences, some stories from friends, and some universal ideas. After all, “everyone knew a Sadie in high school!”
“The show is very much a mystery, as much as it is a comedy,” Iungerich said. So we should expect some twists and turns, especially when considering the “care-frontation” letter that Jenna (Ashley Rickards) received early on and never looked into. We will find out who sent it and we will see how it impacts– whether intentionally or subconsciously– how Jenna acts in the future.
But furthermore, there will be some twists with characters, perhaps most notably Jake (Brett Davern), who thus far as been the “golden boy” of the show.
“So many boys get such a bad rap in this day and age and I wanted to write these two beautiful boys who come from different places,” Iungerich explained, pointing out that we will see their struggles and journeys, even if slightly lessened, than Jenna’s to understand their motivations behind their sometimes immature actions.
“There will be bumps in the road,” Davern said of his story arc for the season. “I think we’ve only scratched the surface so far. It gets dark!”
It will get dark for Sadie (Molly Tarlov), too. Though Tarlov is reveling in playing someone who she considers “funny and sassy,” she knows her role could be a stereotype and is thrilled that it isn’t playing out that way. In episode six, for example, we will get to “go home” with Sadie and see her breakdown. Obviously she is one of those girls who is hurting inside and turns her venom outward to make other people feel worse to make herself feel better. But knowing the whys behind the bad behavior may help us sympathize with her even just a little bit.
And for those of you hoping for some more Matt (Beau Mirchoff) and Jenna romance, well, it will be an uphill battle all season long. Jenna has high hopes, and though they had a pretty special moment at the end of the second episode, “Matty always manages to screw it up!” according to Mirchoff.
“He is still growing and developing, and then he meets Jenna, and he thinks she’s pretty cool and interesting, but he doesn’t really know how to convey that to her,” Mirchoff shared.
Through it all, Jenna will manage to keep her dryly optimistic perspective, though.
“Even girls who are invisible can have the fantasy, and that’s what this show is about,” Iungerich said.
Awkward. airs on MTV on Tuesday nights at 11pm.
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