Lucy Hale Opens Up About the Joy of Bringing ‘Katy Keene’ to Life

Katy Keene Season 1 Finale Lucy Hale
David Giesbrecht/The CW

Katy Keene wraps up her first season tonight, and while The CW has yet to decide whether the show is coming back, the hour offers up enough happy endings and hopefully futures for our Archieverse roommates, fans will certainly be satisfied with where this delightful rom-com places most of the characters.

Earlier this week, TV Insider spoke with star Lucy Hale — who will also be participating in the Pretty Little Liars charity reunion on Friday, May 15 — about the eventful finale, getting to perform her dream song and why she, like us, totally hearts Katy.

Hey, so we’re going to spending some more time together this week. Friday is a big deal!

Lucy Hale: Yeah, I know! I think it will be the first time we’ll all be back together since we wrapped. So I’m so excited you’re moderating it.

So let’s talk about this finale because your first season is bookended by two major events in Katy’s life that both involve K.O. but they’re her choices,

What I love so much about our show is that so often you see young women or young men where everything revolves around another person or a relationship. I love that Katy chooses herself, that she says “I’m putting myself first. I’m putting my dreams and desires first and I’m going to let the people in my life do that for themselves, too.” Because in a way, she has to let go of how she imagined things would be and make a really hard decision with K.O. It’s a very unselfish decision so I am happy that this is the place that she ended up.

Luke Cook and Lucy Hale (David Giesbrecht/The CW)

I also appreciated how there’s so little judgment amongst the characters. Even with Pepper (Julia Chan), you are all just trying to understand what she’s doing and why is this happening, instead of condemning her as a bad person. Tonight, she even takes the high ground with Guy (Luke Cook) after figuring out some shady stuff about him.

Right, exactly. I’ve always admired Katy, she’s just a good girl, you know? Because I definitely would not have reacted in that way. Like I would have been like, “Pepper, no, you’re out of my life. Guy, you’re dead to me.” [Laughs] But Katy believes in people…she does the noble thing and we love her for it.

Yet she can also get herself into situations we wouldn’t expect.

[Laughs] Yeah, go girl! I was very thrilled for her. She slept with a prince! Katy is single in the city. She had to, you know, spread her wings a little bit. I was going to say something else, but I’ll just keep it as spread her wings, [Laughs]

Cary Elwes (David Giesbrecht/The CW)

And something else that was really cool to watch was the relationship between Katy and Gloria (Katherine LaNasa). It had so much heart.

I completely agree. And it was one that I didn’t expect. I truly give all the credit to Katherine who just created this unbelievable character that you’re supposed to hate and you cannot hate her. You love her, she’s evil and she does bad things but you love her. And that is a true testament to Katherine. She’s unbelievable. I love working with her and have completely, on and off-screen, fallen in love with her and with Gloria.

Now, there are two moments in the finale — one in particular that is just going to shock the s**t out of people. The introduction of Cary Elwes. This is running before the episode…

So I should not name names, right? [Laughs] Yeah, it does open up a lot of possibilities, very exciting stuff. And when I heard they had cast him, I was so thrilled. I mean, come on!

Last time I talked to you, it was the last day of filming on the finale, which was also your premiere a day and you said you got to perform a song that is so dear to you. And let me tell you, you sound amazing on it.

Thank you! I haven’t seen it all piece together yet, but yeah, it’s “She Used to be Mine” from the Broadway musical Waitress and it’s like one of the top three favorite songs for me. It was a total coincidence that I got the sing it, the writers and producers did not know that. And it’s crazy how the lyrics just fit into Katy storyline so well. I’ll be watching it for the first time with everyone that night.

(David Giesbrecht/The CW)

You were leaving the set that night and heading to Grand Central Station to film a really big scene and you are in this outfit that is just beyond. I can only imagine what people thought.

I have never felt so judged in my life! [Laughs] We filmed until like 1:00 AM at Grand Central and most of the people there are just trying to get to their train. And you know, everyone in New York city wears black and here I am, running through in a tiny little pink feathered dress. I’m sure a lot of people made up their own narrative of where I was headed to or something. But, yeah, there were a lot of stares. And of course, you know, people are yelling stuff at us and it echoes in the station. So it was tricky. But it was iconic.

And episode closes with the roomies together in a scene that puts such a big smile on my face and I was like, “This is the perfect way to end.”

I love that. That was also a tricky scene to shoot because I think it was a Friday night in Lower East Side and it was packed…people were pissed that we were filming. [Laughs] But we got the shot and we’re all dressed up so, so brightly, it makes me happy. I can’t wait to see the finale. I mean, the show is just such a joy and was such a joy to make.

Katy Keene, Thursday, 8/7c, The CW