Since its first episode, You’re The Worst has been an endless parade of bad behavior. From casual cruelty to life-altering terrible decisions, Jimmy (Chris Geere) and Gretchen (Aya Cash) have careened around Los Angeles, leaving quite a wake. In season three, Gretchen took strides to deal with her past and the reasons that she has leaned so fully into self-destruction, Jimmy instead retreated even further into his own issues following the death of his estranged father.
While it was clear that their slowly diverging paths would eventually reach a point of no return, fans watched in horror as Jimmy created the perfect proposal for Gretchen before panicking at the mention of becoming a family and leaving her all alone and abandoned on a hillside. While these two terrible people had made huge mistakes before, this one seemed nearly insurmountable.
Despite all of this painful relationship drama. You’re The Worst still manages to be one of the funniest, sharpest comedies on television today. Chris Geere spoke with us about Jimmy’s evolution in the upcoming season and whether or not he and Gretchen should find their way back to each other.
So, it’s safe to say that Jimmy pretty much blew up everything at the end of last season. What did you think when you read that finale?
Pretty much, well, I was laughing all the way through, thinking, “This is going to be great.” Then, just screaming, “No!” Like I wanted to jump in front of him before someone shot him. I was like, “What are you doing?” But, you know, that’s kind of the rule. Every time I read a script, I’m just reading episode 10 now of season four, which we start next week, and again, there’s another opportunity for him to succeed at something and then he does something awful, and you’re like, “No.” But as an actor, playing him, I have to find some sort of reason as to why he’s doing this. It’s usually because he just doesn’t know how to deal with it, emotions. He’s just completely incapable of stepping outside of his own narcissism.
I have full faith that when we get to the end of this show, whenever that is, hopefully season 28, there’ll be some peace. I just want them to find some peace. But, at the moment, they seem to be just wading through this quicksand, trying to get to the edge. People keep sticking the oar out for them to get out of the quicksand, and instead of taking it, they bat it away thinking that they can do it on their own. And they can’t, but they’re slowly realizing that, which is good, which is progress.
We kind of saw Gretchen take steps towards dealing with her issues last season, with her going into therapy. Do you think he’ll potentially follow suit despite claiming that he doesn’t need any therapy of any kind?
Yeah. He is, as I said, he’s slowly realizing that he’s got to change in order to progress in some way. But, it just seems to take him forever. It’s quite a British thing, really. A.) he’s very stuck in his ways, but B.) he seems to sweep everything under the carpet that’s important. Sometimes, you’ve just got to lift up that carpet and face the music. This season really is him facing the music, whether he likes it or not. I mean, episode one is a real juxtaposition, in that at the beginning it’s just him escaping. He’s not claiming any responsibility for his actions. Then, at the end, there’s the simple gesture of admittance, and fans will see it, they’ll be — not forgiving him for his behavior — but rooting for him to do something about it. And he can’t just hide. You can’t just stick your head in the sand forever, you got to face it. Yeah, so Gretchen doesn’t make it easy for him. Let’s put it that way.
They both really bring out the worst and the best in each other, don’t they?
Which makes them perfect for each other. So again, I mean, when I’m reading the script, I think Jimmy did this awful thing at the end of season 3, but there’s some stuff that Gretchen does in season 4 which I think trumps it.
I think it tops what Jimmy did to her. And that retaliation comes from a place of pain. So, the pain is there because of the love that is there. And you just, even though they don’t seem to be talking for a large amount of time, you know that they’re thinking about each other. You know that they’ve influenced each other so much that it’s like talking like each other. They talk about things as the other one would talk about things. And that’s a real partnership and there’s so many subtleties in this season which for the super fans, they’ll be like, “Oh my God,” like, “He’s still thinking about her then, even at that point.” It’s very special.
Do you think if they can sort of get out of their own way, do you think there is a chance for them in the long-term?
Yes. In truth, I think they have to be together. They have to be together, because there’s introductions of other love interests this year, and on paper, they look like really good people. But for Jimmy and Gretchen, they’re just temporary fixes. They’re right, but they’re not perfect. And we only get one life, and you need someone that’s perfect for you, and they are perfect for each other, whether they admit it or not.
So what does Jimmy back on the dating scene look like? I can imagine it’s a bit of a trainwreck, at least to start.
Yeah, it’s awful because he’s trying too hard. And yeah, he hasn’t dated anyone in the whole time that he’s been with Gretchen, and before her was Becca (Janet Varney). And apart from that, it’s just been some awful one-night stands that have been meaningless. So, when he attempts to fit in to the dating world, it’s catastrophic. Let’s put it that way. And it’s been so fun to play. I feel like I’m playing Vernon (Todd Robert Anderson) at some points. It’s hilarious, and because if Jimmy behaves like himself, the narcissist novelist that he is, he’s not going to get anywhere. So, when he realizes that he has to kind of fit in a little bit, and him fitting in is just awful. So, it’s been quite fun.
One of the things we started to see, sort of at the end of last season, is Edgar (Desmin Borges) finding success and a life of his own. I’m curious how that is going to affect his relationship with Jimmy? I’m personally hoping it gets a little less unequal, but I can’t see the casual cruelty going away right away.
I truly believe that Edgar becomes the boss of the relationship this year. The career that he’s developing, and the sense of self-worth have increased. He’s met some new friends who are telling him how he should behave around Jimmy. So, he’s just getting stronger and stronger. At first, Jimmy doesn’t appreciate this, but he realizes that he may be losing Edgar. I think we’ve all had friendships in our lives where we, despite how long we’ve known a friend or how important they were to us at some point, if we’re not getting from them what we expect from them, then at some point you’re going to go, “Do you know what? I can’t deal with you anymore.”
I think Edgar’s getting to that point. People are going to be really, really pleased with Edgar’s progress this year. And with Lindsey (Kether Donohue) as well. Both of them seem to be finding their own very strong independence, whereas, at the beginning it was Jimmy and Gretchen kind of ruled the show. But it feels like this season that they turn into the children. The old phrase of when parents begin as parents, but slowly, slowly they become the children. They started off as the parents, and then now, I think like, we’re the children. It’s very good. It’s getting much more on a level playing field this year.
Are we going to see Jimmy’s family again? Because I really enjoyed that dynamic because it really brought out a very different side of him, and he’s clearly got a lot to work through there.
His family seem like people he’s just stuck in an elevator with. He has nothing in common with any of them, but it makes me as an actor feel very different when I’m around these people. The family doesn’t come back this year, but a blast from the past does. And there’s more insight into what I’ve always believed is that Jimmy got on a plane to Los Angeles and pretty much tried to start again.
Those skeletons are coming out of the cupboard and fighting him. And this season is largely about the fact that we are products of our parents, and whereas before, there’s a lot of sadness and resentment towards all of our families. I think this year we face up to it. We face up and realize that we’ve got to do something about it because we can’t live the life that they lived.
Because we don’t have to conform to the rules that they set out for us, saying that this is how you need to behave. This is how you should be. I think everyone’s taught that. I think there’s something that happens between your thirties and your forties where you re-evaluate a lot. You question where you are in your life. Whether you could be doing something else. Which boxes have you ticked? And all of them are doing that this year.
That’s gotta be a pretty terrifying thing, but also very liberating.
So liberating. You can look at it openly and get excited about changing. I think it’s quite cool. Even with the parents that I know of myself, and my friendship groups, that that generation don’t seem to be willing to change. They don’t seem to be willing to better themselves, on the whole.
They come from a generation which is very much, “This is who I am. And I’m gonna teach my children that this is the way they should be.” Whereas our generation, largely due to what’s going on in the world anywhere at the moment, are more kind of, “I don’t want to be like that. I want to be like this.” And it’s a very strong generation, I think, that we’ve got at the moment. And therefore, the lessons that we teach our offspring and that we share with our friends, it’s far more beautiful, than what our parents taught us that the fundamental things in life, but I think it’s important to look at the bad as well as the good, and not paint over the cracks.
You’re The Worst premieres Wednesday September 6th at 10:00 p.m. EST on FXX.