Even though he named him Jimmy Shive-Overly, Stephen Falk did not originally intend for the male lead of his FX comedy You’re the Worst to be British.
“I thought it was pretentious and writerly,” Falk said Monday during the show’s TCA summer press tour panel. “It just happens to sound super British.”
But when Chris Geere auditioned, Falk immediately knew he was the one, adding that it was a “twin realization that I had written a British character, I just didn’t know it.”
“I’ve realized in casting I think we Americans have a false sense that British actors are all really good at doing an American accent,” Falk said.
Asked if his British accent has helped him in the romantic department in real life, Geere admitted that when he first came to America he did his “best impression of Hugh Grant and Prince William,” but “this is just my voice. I don't need to pretend to be anyone else.”
You’re the Worst, meanwhile, isn’t pretending to be just another sitcom. That is made abundantly clear with the show’s title.
“It tickled me creatively,” Falk said of the title. “It’s a typical romantic comedy about flawed people. The worst in all of us deserves love.”
Falk said that the actors had to have an inherent likability to play characters on a show called You’re the Worst.
Aya Cash plays Gretchen Cutler, a jaded twenty-something who becomes romantically entangled with Geere’s character, who he said is the “voice of unreason.” Rounding out the cast are Desmin Borges, who plays Jimmy’s roommate, and Kether Donohue, who plays Gretchen’s friend.
You’re the Worst, which premiered July 17, airs Thursdays at 10:30 p.m.
Other highlights from the panel included:
—Falk said he set the show in Los Angeles out of laziness. His last job forced him to go to New York, and he did not want to have to go very far. “I set everything in my neighborhood basically,” he said.
—Regarding the show’s sex scenes, Cash said, “We’re not used to seeing realistic sex portrayed in comedy,” adding that “because it’s FX ... we get to be real.” Asked about her real-life husband’s reaction to her sex scenes, Cash said his response was, “We're buying a new car."