We already know that we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but what about a television series? On first glance Crawford, CBC’s new comedy series from Trailer Park Boys creator Mike Clattenburg, seems all kind of crazy. Not only is there a family full of misfits at the center of everything, but have we mentioned the raccoons? Yep, you read that right, raccoons. At the end of the day though Crawford, premiering Thursday, June 14 at 9 p.m. ET on CBC, is a family comedy with a whole lot of heart.
Jill Hennessy and John Carroll Lynch play the heads of this not-so-typical family who find their home invaded by raccoons. Canadian Screen Award winner Alice Moran plays one of their children Wendy, Don (Kyle Mac) and Brian (Daniel Davis Yang)’s sister who is a bit of a rebel that tends to date a lot of “bad boys.” Known for her role and writing for the acclaimed series Sunnyside, Moran recently gave The TV Junkies further insight into her character and why despite its crazy premise, viewers will want to tune in and check out Crawford.
The TV Junkies: What can you share with us about your Crawford character, Wendy?
Alice Moran: Wendy has the most normal problems of anyone in the family, but she is the least chill in dealing with them. Her parents are being blackmailed, her brother thinks he can talk to raccoons and in Wendy’s brain the biggest problem is that her boyfriend isn’t committed. It’s a real treat to play a character who thinks like that.
TTVJ: Getting the chance to be a part of a series from Mike Clattenburg had to be exciting for you. Were you a fan of Trailer Park Boys and how did the Crawford opportunity come about?
AM: I was a big fan, so when my agent sent me the first Crawford script, I pounced. I auditioned for the show early last year and I thought it went terribly. Right before my first audition, this dude was hitting on me in the coffee shop where I was learning my lines and when I told him I wasn’t interested he started screaming and threatening me. I was pretty shook still when I got to the audition and I thought, ‘Well I’m not booking this because my energy was way too intense for what the scene called for.’
A couple weeks later I had a callback and it was hours before my trip to France. I was sitting in the waiting room with my luggage freaking out that I was going to miss my flight. I left and thought, ‘Well there’s no way I’m getting that. My energy was way too keyed up for what that scene was.’ So I guess my sweet spot for auditions is pure panic.
TTVJ: Admittedly, the Crawford premise is pretty far out there. What did you think when you first heard what it was going to be about and how do you get people past that wackiness so they give it a shot?
AM: I was excited to work on something I’d never seen before. I think that’s what television needs to be now. Everything that’s been done before is on Netflix. There’s no point in making another show about a bunch of twenty-somethings living in New York, because we already have a bunch of good ones. My pitch for Crawford is that it’s not like anything else – it’s a little weirder. What I love most about it is it feels like the way Mike Clattenburg and Mike O’Neill would tell you a story – it’s joyful, and kind – like they are.
TTVJ: People always say it’s super difficult to work with animals. How did that experience go for you guys on Crawford with the raccoons?
AM: If anything the raccoons were more professional than I was. At the very least, they’re better staying in their shot, but in my defense: nobody lures me onto my mark with snacks.
TTVJ: At the end of the day, Crawford is a comedy about a family. What can you share about the actors you got to work with on this as a part of that family?
AM: Working with Kyle and Daniel feels like working with my actual brothers. It’s a lot of gentle ribbing and secretly loving each other but trying to be cool about it. They’re the best. As for John and Jill – like my real parents – I just want them to be proud of me.
TTVJ: I know you’ve also done some writing and regularly perform at a theater. What do you love about keeping your hand in a lot of different projects and do you have a preference of one over another?
AM: I like to be busy. Creativity is a muscle, so you gotta keep it tight if you wanna be at the top of your game. I think I like TV more than theatre because I get bored of my lines quickly and in the past had a tendency to dick around on stage. I love performing more than anything. I write because I don’t always see the parts I’d like to see for myself, so I’m trying to create more.
TTVJ: Do you have any other upcoming projects that we should know about and keep an eye out for?
AM: I’m writing for the new series Greenfields, which is coming out this fall.
Are you planning on checking out Crawford? Sound off below!
Crawford premieres Thursday, June 14 at 9 p.m. ET on CBC.
Editor in Chief Bridget Liszewski comes from a long line of TV Junkies who fostered her love of television from a very young age. She's channeled that passion into covering both US and Canadian television shows, and is thankful everyday for the invention of the DVR. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame, she loves college football and is a fan of sports in general. Bridget is always up for talking TV and you can follow her on twitter at @BridgetOnTV.