She may work on a show with a title that suggests otherwise, but You're The Worst's Aya Cash might actually be the best. Cash, who also stars in the Netflix show Easy , talked to Bustle about the portrayal of women on television and what it is she looks for in a role. It was a conversation that Cash's character Gretchen would probably have rolled her eyes at, because she doesn't care about anyone outside of herself. However, it's clear from Cash's answers that she thinks carefully about any character she takes on — not just in regards to how it will benefit her and her own career, but what it will mean in the larger context of women in entertainment.
"I think what attracted me to You're The Worst is similar to what attracted to me to Easy," she said. "When I got the script for You're The Worst, I was like, 'I haven't seen this woman on television before.' And then with Easy, [creator] Joe [Swanberg] asked me what don't I get to do, ever, and what don't people see me as. I was like, 'I'd love to play maternal, and nice, and sweet, which is something I don't get to do often.'"
First of all, it's awesome that Cash's ears perked up at the chance to portray a kind of woman we don't really get to see on TV. Second of all, it's even more awesome that she wasn't satisfied just getting pigeonholed into that one type of role that she's gotten such great recognition for. I can imagine getting a few accolades and deciding not to mess with the formula, but Cash seems to feel the need to push herself, take risks, and experience new things.
She continues, describing her Easy character:
"I liked the idea of sort of exploding the myth, or the trope, of the naggy wife. So she sort of could be that, but you realize that, as she says to [her husband], 'You're making me that. I want to have fun too, you've just got to include me. Don't make me be that person.'"
Cash recognizes that entertainment it isn't necessarily about creating likable characters; it's about creating real characters. As she says about Gretchen, "It's none of my business whether you like her or not — I like her." Real characters aren't two-dimensional, and they don't act in certain ways without reasons behind it. She seems determined to flesh out those reasons, which explains a lot about why she's so magnetic on both of her shows in such completely different ways. Cash seems to really get the industry and how to move it forward, and is using her own work to encourage it in that direction. That's as generous as it is impressive.
Watch the full Facebook Live interview above for more inspirational tidbits like those ones, and a You're The Worst-themed game. Then, keep your eyes peeled for Season 2 of Easy and Season 4 of You're The Worst.
Image: Abbey Adkison/Bustle