Andrea Savage on being lesbian adjacent and her new “Episodes” romance

You probably know by now that Andrea Savage is currently playing Helen Basch, the network president sleeping with her number two, Carol Rance, on this season of Episodes. What you may not know is that Savage is more than an actress with a cool last name, getting paid to grab boobs. (Which, frankly, is enough in my book.) She’s also a writer, a director and all-around hilarious, smart lady.

Showtime Celebrates All-New Seasons Of "Shameless," "House Of Lies" And "Episodes"

Savage has appeared in Step Brothers, Dinner for Schmucks, the upcoming, Sleeping with Other People opposite Jason Sudeikis, and my personal favorite, as the not-quite British Veronica Von Vandervon, on the Hulu’s hilarious Real Housewives send-up, The Hotwives of Orlando.

Andrea spent some time with us to talk about playing Helen, with a slightly spoiler-ish hint of what’s to come, being lesbian-adjacent, and why Republicans cannot go unanswered. On this season of Episodes, you’re bringing the gay.
Andrea Savage: Bringing the gay, everybody.

AE: How much fun was it playing Helen Basch?
AS: It was, honestly, kind of a dream job. Kathleen [Rose Perkins] and I hit it off right away. We had so much fun!

AE: She told me they brought in actresses for chemistry reads, and the minute she saw you, she knew you were the one. Kind of like love at first sight.
AS: [laughs] We did! We had immediate chemistry. And, we’re good friends now, which doesn’t always happen. Usually, with someone you’re like, “OK, I like you. But I don’t need to go to dinner with you.”  But we get together, we hang out. It’s really nice.

AE: What happens at a chemistry read, exactly? How is it different from a regular audition?
AS: I’ve had all different kinds. Basically, they want to see what you look like on camera [together.] And also, what your energy is, how you work off each other, and if you believe that they would have a relationship.

Episode 405

AE: Sounds like a first date. Is this the first time you’ve played a lesbian?
AS: I think it is. I know I played bisexual on House of Lies. And then, other things before, but I think this is the first time that I’ve played a lesbian.

AE: Did you do any kind of research to prepare for the role?
AS: Not really. I have a lot of lesbian friends. I have lesbians in my family.

AE: Sounds like you’re very lesbian adjacent.
AS: I’m very lesbian adjacent, I will say that. Yes, very much. But a lesbian is a person. I didn’t feel like I really had to delve into anything much deeper than that to play a lesbian, to play a person.