Can you give us a brief description of who you play in the show?
I play Bo and she grew up thinking that she was a human and she was like everyone else, like every girl in high school. She learns when she becomes a teenager that she’s got these sort of sexual urges that go beyond normal teenage urges. At the beginning of our series she learns that she’s actually not human, that she’s a succubus and she’s part of this whole Fae underworld that lives and feeds amongst humans. So that’s the beginning of her journey.
She’s a very strong character isn’t she?
She is indeed and that’s what kind of drew me to her. What I love is that she’s so strong and tough. At the core of it Bo is actually very vulnerable and scared a lot of the time so that’s what drew me to her as well, is this power that she has, that she learns that she has at the beginning of the series, which was her greatest source of shame for so long is now becoming her power. It becomes over time something that makes her extremely powerful.
What’s been the most enjoyable aspect of the show for you?
We’re in our second season here now in Canada and I really have no complaints about being on the show. It’s a great cast, we all get along extremely well, and everybody really cares about their own character and loves their own character and really makes an effort to bring more to it every day. For me I get to do a lot of fun stuff. I get into fights with gigantic creatures, and I get to be really physical on the show as well, but I think the thing that I love the most is just the relationships that I’ve developed off camera with the cast and crew and I think that translates on camera into our show.
I love it. She’s just kind of ready for action. Many types of action I suppose, but I love that she kind of dresses in a sexy way but is also a uniform that she puts on. Every day for her is a bit of a battle. I love that. The wardrobe does make a big difference about how you feel playing this character and how you and the character evolve.
Since Bo is a succubus who tends to be kissing men and women, does kissing just become another day in the office?
Yeah, lucky for me the people I kiss the most are my costars so I know them really well, I like them which makes it more comfortable. It was definitely interesting filming the series premiere because we had to figure out the succubus kiss and what that means. There was a lot of discussion and practice. That guest star had a lot of extra takes. Whether he liked that I’m not sure, you would have to ask him. It took a lot more time. But now I’m so used to it the guest star comes on our show and I’m like, “Ok here’s the deal, this is how it’s done.” We just kind of jump right in and go for it, which is the best and only way to handle those scenes I think.
Out of all the roles you’ve played so far in your career which would you say is the most challenging and the one you’ve most enjoyed?
I would have to say this one. I’ve done some work on another show here called Being Erica, which was a great show and a really great role that they had written, but I have to say that being on Lost Girl and playing Bo has been the best role and job I’ve done that’s most challenging. It’s a lot of work to make a series and it’s really a gift to get to tell a story for a longer period of time. We’ve been picked up for a second season here and were doing 22 episodes this season. People want to see more of these characters which I love. We feel really honored that we get to tell this story and we try to tell it to the best of our abilities.
Did you know anything about Celtic mythology before hand and are you interested in it now?
Mostly what I learn on the show comes to me weekly when I get the new script. Everything is based on mythology that exists out there and if it doesn’t exist then they don’t want it on the show. They want to be able to find a base for it somewhere, which I really love. I knew what a succubus was long before the show ever came my way because I used to have this recurring nightmare when I was in high school and it always sounds like I’m making this story up, but I’m really not. I did really have this nightmare a lot. My mom was on a flight when she found this article about the incubus/succubus phenomenon. So she ripped it out and brought it home and I thought, “That’s what I have! That’s what’s coming to me!” so I knew what that was and I had this amazing book as a child that was given to me by a family friend about fairies, and it was this dark sinister world of little fairy creatures that lived under mushrooms and didn’t look so pretty. I was really drawn into that world from a young age. And I remember reading in England about the Cottingley Fairies and I was really fascinated by that. Both my parents grew up in England so I know some of the history there as well but I remember being really drawn to that story as a child.
How does your character develop in the second season and are there other things that you’d like to see her do?
At the beginning of the first season Bo gets this question answered about who she is or what she is. She wants to find out who she is and her roots so that’s kind of her journey through season one. That certainly continues into season two, but Bo learned a lot in season one. In season two she’s a lot smarter, she’s a lot stronger and she knows she has to be a lot more accountable for her actions. She knows that her actions have consequences. The political world that exists on the show between the light and the dark Fae is something that she has to be a little bit smarter about and a little more calculated and know how to play that system a little bit. That’s something she starts to do in season two because she loves her friends and the make shift family she has on the show so much. She wants to do whatever she can to protect them and just figure out more about her roots and her history. I’d like to see her approach things with less fear. I’d like to see her be a little bit more no nonsense about things and that’s starting to happen in the second season.
The tone of the show is always changing, so was that the plan to start off the show lighter and just keep getting darker?
Well the real story behind that is that our original pilot was actually our eighth episode that aired. So I don’t know if you remember episode eight specifically, but it had a different look and it was much darker. It was a very, very dark episode and we were very serious. Kenzie was always meant to be the comic relief of the show so she has her comedy in that episode but the rest of us were extremely serious. It’s a great episode. It was directed by John Faucet who does a lot of interesting stuff in Canada and did this great movie called Ginger Snaps, which was this great wolf/vampire movie. The look of that pilot was something that was really dark and I think we loved it, but the writers and the creators wanted to inject more humor into the show so that we wouldn’t take ourselves so seriously. The tone of the show did kind of change from episode to episode and it finds a nice balance towards the end of the season. It’s nice to have lighter episodes and it’s nice to have darker episodes. It’s good to have that kind of fun with it and I think that it does find a good balance at the end of the season and certainly into season two.
Do you see Canadian TV getting much better in the future?
I do and I’m really proud to be on a show that’s part of that wave of Canadian TV. When we first started airing; people would come up to me and constantly say, “Your show doesn’t look Canadian.” I knew what they meant because Canadian television has been up and down over the years. It’s certainly been a real divide amongst what exists out there on Canadian TV and that’s definitely changing. I have a lot of friends that are actors in Canada and I watch their shows and they’re really good and interesting. We are airing more in the US which never happened before. It’s interesting to go to LA to pursue a career there only to come back to where I started from only to air in the US. It’s not something I could have planned, but I’m really happy to come back to Toronto because I do love working in Canada. I still go to LA and I’m still living in LA and I’m just in Toronto to film the show, but it’s nice to be a part of a wave of television shows that are redefining what Canadian television is. I’m proud to be a part of that.
Do you find werewolves, vampires and supernatural beings sexy?
Definitely. One of the main characters on our show is a wolf and he definitely doesn’t have a shortage of female fans. There’s just something really animalistic I guess and confident about those kinds of characters. I think that’s what’s sexy about them. I know that’s what I like to see and there’s something dangerous as well.
If you didn’t want to act anymore, what would you do?
I love acting so I can’t imagine not doing it but if I wasn’t doing it I think I would want to work in the area of nutrition. I know that sounds totally boring, but I’m really passionate about healthy eating and good food. I’m really passionate about how children are educated to eat. I think that’s something that I would want to do and it’s something that I do in my spare time. That’s probably where I’d be drawn to which I know sounds totally boring but that’s the truth.
Did you know what the revelations were going to be at the start with Bo or did you learn as you went along through the season?
We kind of learned them as we went along to a certain degree. The first season we shot 13 episodes and we shot them out of order. We started with our pilot which we didn’t know what that was going to be. They call it a sample episode rather than a pilot, which in the end played as episode 8. That meant that the story had to lead up to that episode and then had to continue from there. Because we didn’t shoot in order, we just had a description from writers about what had happened. Kris who plays Dyson on the show, he and I would look at each other sometimes and say ok, “this episode takes place after that one, but we don’t know this one yet. Do we like each other right now?” It was actually hard to figure out but we managed to do it. What’s great about this second season is that we’re shooting in order. We get to unfold the story and learn about it the same way the audience will which I really like. There was a bit of figuring that out which a lot of shows shoot out of order. It’s a little bit tricky.
Are you allowed to do most of your own stunts or do you have someone do them for you?
I’m really active in wanting to do my own stunts. I have a great stunt double and she also trains me, helps keep me fit and knows kind of how to help me out when I’m doing a fight. I do 85-90% of a fight or sometimes I do the whole thing. She will come in to do something that needs a bit more specialty, like a really cool kick or something like that. I learned in the first season because I really hurt my leg, not badly, but I was practising a kick over and over because I wanted it to be good for the fight the next day and I couldn’t even walk the next day. I wasn’t able to do that kick and I spent two episodes limping, which we actually wrote into one of the episodes because as a succubus I’m supposed to heal so we kind of had to cheat that a little bit. I was holding onto people for certain scenes. I learned that as much as I wanted to do that cool kick, I never got to do it, and then it kind of impaired me through a few episodes. Now this season I’m happier to sit back if I know that I’m really tired and I know I’ve been doing it a lot and I know I’m going to be really sore and not be able to do what I want to do the next day. I’m happy to sit back now and say, “Jen come on over.” She’ll just jump right in and do it, but I still do most of it myself because it’s tied into the character. It makes you feel like you’re this character, so it’s important to get the physicality of it all.
Do you and the cast have more input into the script since you have a year under your belt?
We do. We have some of the same writers as last year and some newer writers, but they’re all very open to us saying, “Bo would never say that.” Because of all these different reasons and they’ll say you’re right. We all speak up about it because we really know our own characters and we really take care of them. They’re definitely open to input from the actors. That’s why it’s such a great show to work on because it’s really collaborative. Even if you don’t win your argument you still get to make it. That’s a really great environment to be in.
Out of all your cast, who is more like their character and who is least like their character?
There are parts of us that are very much like our characters. For instance Kris who plays Dyson, who’s so intense and brooding, there are definitely parts of him that are like that but in real life he’s pretty goofy and makes a lot of jokes. You just don’t ever really see that on the show. Ksenia who is hilarious plays Kenzie and she’s funny in real life too but she’s a little bit more reserved then Kenzie is. She’s a little bit more serious and professional rather than makes tons of jokes. There’s certainly a side of her that’s like that. Lauren who is played by Zoe Palmer; Zoe is hilarious. When I’m doing scenes with Zoe there’s often times where we have to cut because I can’t stop laughing. She has the ability to make me laugh then she gets all serious doctor and just drops right into it where I can’t stop laughing. I think we’re all a lot like our characters, but then we have other sides to ourselves. I think I'm a lot like Bo in a lot of ways but not entirely. I guess you’d have to ask the rest of the cast about that part. No one’s entirely like their character. There’s a little other side to them that would surprise fans I think.
Lost Girl Season 1 is out now on DVD