Exclusive: Krysten Ritter, Dreama Walker, and James Van Der Beek weigh in on the second season of Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23
Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23 returns for its second season tonight at 9:30pm on ABC, and by the way star Krysten Ritter explains it, viewers can expect to see a lot more delicious bad behavior. “We get into a lot of trouble,” she told PopBytes at the season two premiere party hosted by Vulture in New York City last evening. “There’s a lot of bitchiness and a lot of fun. The writing is getting tighter and funnier and more absurd, and we’re just rolling with it.”
It’s a good thing too, since bitchiness is our favorite thing about Don’t Trust the B (well, besides that title). The show, which follows good-girl June (Dreama Walker) and her bad-girl roommate Chloe (Ritter), has a fresh point-of-view and hysterically sarcastic voice – far different from any other network comedy. “It’s much younger.” said Ritter, pointing out how different the show is from the comedies on the rest of the ABC line-up. “We really go for the belly laughs.” Co-star Dreama Walker agreed. “There’s been table reads where we had to stop in the middle because we were laughing so hard. I’ve cried on set more than a few times.”
But don’t be quick to mistake the show’s unique P.O.V. for snarkiness. “It’s got an edge,” said co-star James Van Der Beek, “but what I like about it is the characters aren’t pessimistic. The characters are inarguably amoral, sure. But there’s a sense of optimism that they bring to all of their dastardly deeds. That’s why you love the bitch and still want to hang out with her because she’s the bitch.”
That’s true. Though if ratings are any indication, you may have missed falling in love with the bitch the first time around. Don’t Trust the B show premiered mid-season last spring and only aired seven episodes in its first run (the remaining six filmed in season one will be integrated into nine new episodes that have been filmed for season two, round out the full season). Ratings were so-so (Modern Family was its big lead-in, but it never really did better than Happy Endings or Cougar Town did in the same slot), so the move to Tuesdays could be dangerous (especially since it’s going head to head with Fox’s The Mindy Project and NBC’s The New Normal – both of which have proven to be hits).
Still, strong writing and likeable characters should earn Don’t Trust the B a spot on your viewing schedule (or, at the very least, your DVR). And season two promises a lot of great action, including a boyfriend for Chloe, a work nemesis for June, and heightened screen time for Robin (Liza Lapira), Eli (Michael Blaiklock) and Luther (Ray Ford). Plus, they’ll be plenty to do for James Van Der Beek’s character (um… James Van Der Beek), including a stint on Dancing with the Stars (with Dean Cain!), a plot to nab People’s Sexiest Man Alive title, and an attempt to reunite former WB stars (Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Busy Phillips, and Frankie Muniz all guest as themselves in the premiere). Just don’t expect any “Crying Dawson” jokes. “The most fun we have is when we start making up stuff that’s not on the resume,” explained Van Der Beek. “We do the Dawson jokes because it’s there, but you can only get so much mileage out of them.”
And while the tears may be flowing behind the scenes with the cast, don’t expect to see them happening on camera. Chloe may be a foil to June, but her days of making June cry are far past us. “June definitely has a little bit more of an air of confidence,” said Walker. “She can handle herself a little bit better.” So has New York changed her? Not necessarily. Walker jokes that June has always had that tough girl inside her: “The thing about June is that she’s positively straight up gangster, but under the most Indiana sheltered little face and persona. And I feel like I can relate to that because I feel like I’m straight up gangster too. So we have a lot in common.“
It’s that back and forth battle that keeps the laughs coming on Don’t Trust the B. And while the chemistry between Ritter and Walker clearly works, it might not have been that way right in the beginning. Prior to filming, Walker was a big Breaking Bad fan, and wasn’t necessarily the biggest fan of Ritter’s character on that show. “She was a bitch!” Walker told us. “I didn’t know [Ritter] personally, but I was like, ‘I want this girl gone.’ She was fucking with Walt and Jesse and I didn’t like her. And then I met her a week later and was like, ‘Sorry. I wanted you dead.’” A great way to begin a working relationship, no?
“Fortunately for me, this show is about a girl moving to NY and getting her ass kicked by a horrible bitch, and I have a lot to say about that!” Walker told us. Her biggest piece of advice for someone dealing with a B—- of a roommate herself? “Trust your instincts. If you get one hang in your stomach where you’re like, ‘something’s not right – I don’t trust this person,’ get out. Or at least be ready for the ride.” Ritter’s much more frank with her answer. “Move. Go find another crazy roommate – and move again!”
Perhaps it’s that shared experience of bad roommates that unites us all around Don’t Trust the B? Or, as James Van Der Beek puts it, perhaps it’s because “everyone’s got a little bitch inside them.”
The second season of Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23 premieres tonight at 9:30pm on ABC.
Bryan Bedder, Photo Credit / Getty Images for New York Magazine