‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’: Pete Gardner on His Newfound Love for White Josh
While Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’s Rebecca (Golden Globe winner Rachel Bloom) has been dealing with her feelings for her ex-turned-current-love-interest Josh (Vince Rodriguez III), another character has been coming to terms with his own feelings for Josh’s close friend, White Josh (David Hull): Rebecca’s boss, Darryl Whitefeather (Pete Gardner). But discovering his attraction to White Josh has led the head of Whitefeather & Associates to another big self-realization—that he’s bothsexual bisexual.
Pete Gardner, who portrays the now openly bi-sexual lawyer, says he was informed early on of his character’s romantic development. “I went, ‘Oh great! This is fantastic.'” recalls Gardner. “It was such a wonderful surprise because they told me my character was going to have much more to do than just be this bumbling boss. He was going to have some sort of romantic relationship.”
And Monday’s episode of The CW musical comedy builds on Darryl’s newfound knowledge by having him officially come out at the office… in a big Huey Lewis-style musical number.
“Darryl comes out to everybody in the office and they’re just like, ‘Yeah, so what?’ [and] he’s like, ‘Aww.’ It’s a big production for him and they’re like, ‘It’s no big deal.'” says Gardner. “What I love about this is that Darryl can still be funny, and his sexuality is not the butt of the joke. It’s not a joke about him being bisexual; the jokes are only because Darryl is Darryl. That’s who he is and that’s what’s funny.”
With the West Covina lawyer now poised to come out to his colleagues and act on his feelings for White Josh, we spoke to Gardner about what’s in store for his character and White Josh.
Now that Darryl’s realized he’s bisexual, how will it affect him? Is he more confident?
I think so. As we go further beyond this episode I was like, “I think Darryl gets stronger because of this. The feelings he feels for White Josh empower him [and] he starts to become a little more grounded because he’s not quite so lost so more.” [Executive Producer Aline Brosh McKenna] and Rachel were like, “Absolutely, that’s great!” There’s only one scene at the very end, but I think it’s best for him. That’s not really giving anything away, but I think it does make him stronger, which is a great thing.
What’s next for him and White Josh? Is Darryl interested in pursuing a relationship, or is he just kind of exploring his feelings for now?
Oh, yeah. Darryl is so overwhelmed that somebody is genuinely giving him affection. Looking back at all the other episodes, Darryl is always reaching out and getting shut down, so it’s so nice to see someone who genuinely gets him, who thinks he’s funny and enjoys him and is willing to show him affection openly. I feel that Darryl has always been that way [himself]. He’s always supportive of Rebecca and Paula. It’ll have the same ups and downs as any relationship does as they negotiate and figure it out but he’s head over heels for White Josh right now. Maybe that startles White Josh a little bit. But [also] White Josh thinks this is nothing out of the ordinary. He’s a gay man. So to him, who’s only just kissed [Darryl] twice, it’s like, “What’s the big deal? Hold on a little bit there!” But to Darryl it’s all new and exciting.
Is there anything you can tease about what’s coming up for them?
They go on a date, but that comes after the next episode. It’s basically just, the relationship continues. I can’t say too much more because it’s above my pay grade, but I think it’s just the two of them. They do start to form a relationship.
What is Darryl like on a date?
He basically tries too hard. He wants to be so perfect and he’s all about embracing it. In the last episode, he was a little shy about being out in public, so now he’s embracing it and he really wants everyone to know. That’s the thing about Darryl though, he’s just a little unconscious and isn’t watching himself and doesn’t think things through, so sometimes he forges ahead a little too fast. Actually, Rebecca and Darryl have very similar story lines about being very lost and then finding out about who their true self is, the true sense of themselves. Darryl charges ahead a little bit faster than Rebecca, but we’ll see if that that’s a good strategy or not.
Will he be interacting with White Josh and Regular Josh’s friends more?
I think so. He’s become more friendly with Regular Josh [or] Just Josh because he’s doing the lawsuit with Rebecca, so they’ve had a lot more interaction [and] they know each other a little bit better now. He’ll be around more with those guys because they’re all kind of a community. Before, when we first started, it was definitely the office and the bar. And the bar had those friends and the bar had [Rebecca’s] work colleagues. Now we’re bridging those gaps.
What about his ex-wife and his daughter? Will they be back?
I’m not sure. I mean, I loved to play with both of those actresses, but I don’t know if we’ll see much of my ex-wife because that sort of ended on a good note but [also a] very negative one—Sheila was cheating for five years. Actually, that would be beautiful. But I’m guessing here, I don’t know. I’m just throwing darts at the wall. It would be nice to see [Darryl’s] wife after [he’s] evolved to see how she’d react. That would be really interesting. It would [also] be really interesting to see how he’s dealt with explaining this to his daughter.
We know Paula knows about Rebecca’s feelings for Josh, but will Darryl be more involved with that?
He is involved in that, but it’s just however much they let him in. He’s always a big supporter of Rebecca, because number one, she’s awesome. She’s a Harvard and Yale trained lawyer so she wins everything she touches. This [last case] was unfortunate [because] she stuck by her principles rather than just win the case like Audra would’ve. So that was her turn. But [Darryl’s] always supportive of her. He considers Paula his best friend even though she doesn’t think that of him. [Laughs] That’s how he sees her. He sees her as his best friend. It’s just how much they include him, but it’s slowly tipping the other way. I think Rebecca confides in him more and has warm feelings towards Darryl. There’s definitely more, almost like a father-daughter friend-type closeness there. She definitely has looked out for him many times. But you know, if Josh pops up on her radar, she disappears with that. She’s not [Darryl’s] best friend. [Laughs]
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend airs on Mondays at 8/7c on The CW.