'Mythic Quest's Ashly Burch Teases 'Very Sweet' Comedy & Similar Tone to 'Always Sunny'
Apple TV+'s library is growing this month with the addition of Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet. From the minds behind FX's long-running It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia comes this workplace comedy set in a video game production office.
The various roles it takes to get a game like the titular Mythic Quest running are featured, including Ashly Burch's Rachel — a tester whose job it is to constantly play the game in order to identify any problems that may arise. Burch, who is also a staff writer on the show, spoke with TV Insider ahead of the series launch to share why this special comedy will have a wide appeal beyond the demographic that's being depicted.
How did this project enter your orbit?
I just got a call out of the blue that Rob McElhenney wanted to talk to me about writing for his new show. I watched Sunny, of course, for years, but I'd never met Rob before. I'd never met anyone involved. It was because the people on the team saw a sketch comedy series I used to do on YouTube about video games called Hey Ash, Whatcha Playin'?, and Rob saw it and called and asked if I wanted to be on the writing staff. It was a really out of the blue, very surreal call.
Was it an easy yes, then?
Of course, yeah, one hundred percent. I was so surprised he was even calling me. As soon as I heard that, I was like, "Oh my God," because Sunny is brilliant and it's such a smart, funny comedy. Knowing that not just Rob was involved, but also Megan Ganz and David Hornsby and Charlie Day, it was a pretty crazy phone call to get.
What should people expect to find from tuning into Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet?
It is definitely a workplace comedy and it follows a team of dysfunctional game developers. It's super funny of course, because the team behind Sunny is doing it. The thing about the show that I hope that folks will respond to is that it also is very sweet — it has a lot of heart. I think you get really invested in the characters and their storylines and their arcs. There's a lot of sweetness in it that I hope people respond to.
Considering your own love for video games, were you involved in the creative process for your character Rachel?
No, actually, Rachel existed before I even came on board. Charlie and Rob had already written the pilot before the room was assembled. Rachel existed from the very first iteration, I think, of the script, and then I sort of sheepishly asked at some point if I could audition for her and that's kind of how that happened.
Most of your scenes as Rachel are with Imani Hakim's Dana. What can you tease about their relationship in the series?
They are definitely the love story of the show. There is a little bit of a "will they, won't they" happening between them. They're coworkers and they're friends, but you sort of come to find that both of them are interested in something more and it's a bit unspoken. That's part of what I was talking about earlier about there being a lot of sweetness in the show. I think it's very sincere and very honest and I feel lucky to be a part of it.
Your character specialized in women's studies in college and shares an interesting conversation with F. Murray Abraham's character CW Longbottom. Was it difficult keeping a straight face on set?
Definitely. I was surrounded by some of the funniest people on the planet and there's a fair amount of people improvising and riffing on stuff. There were definitely some moments, especially in the group scenes, with a lot of people, [that] it was hard to keep a straight face.
Was there anyone that made you laugh the most?
Honestly, David Hornsby is such a ridiculous, funny human. He's just so good at improvising.
There's a standalone episode in this season featuring Jake Johnson and Cristin Milioti. What other surprises are you excited for fans to see?
I think depending on the type of person you are, what kind of comedy you like — if you come from games, if you don't come from games — I think there are things in the show to love and I think it's going to be different for each person, which I'm actually pretty excited about. I honestly think that there's a little bit of something for everybody. So I'm excited to see what people respond to.
Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet, Series Premiere, Friday, February 7, Apple TV+