Recently, I had the opportunity to chat with two of the cast members, Sara Finley (Kathy) and Aasha Davis (Racey) from the hit web series, the Unwritten Rules. The comedic series tackles office race relations, and how awkward those encounters can be sometimes. Currently in its second season, the series has added a little twist to heat up things, with a new black CEO, Kaneisha Jackson. Find out about what’s going on in the new season, and the cast’s off camera chemistry.
Describe your characters (Racey & Kathy).
SF: Kathy is the manager of a company that employs predominantly white workers. When Racey is hired, Kathy has to adjust the way she manages and works to accommodate having an African- American employee in the mix, but she stumbles over her words and often ends up being offensive. I would not describe Kathy as a racist, but she is definitely sheltered, a bit insensitive, and very resistant to change.
AD: Racey represents all those people who have felt completely out of place in a particular situation. She’s taking each day in stride as her co-workers of all races struggle to understand who she is.
What have you learned about the opposite race since doing the series?
AD: That no matter what color you are, everyone knows what it feels like to have people make assumptions about who you are.
SF: I have learned that for all of the differences we have culturally among all races, we are truly all the same.
What is your favorite episode(s)?
SF: My favorite episode was from Season one, Mmmm….that smells good.
AD: There are one or two coming up, but so far The Itis cracks. Me. Up!
A lot of African-American people can relate to Racey’s experience, do you think the series will enlighten others on the black, workplace experience?
AD: I hope so. I’ve heard people say that the Unwritten Rules is not only funny, but educational and that some teachers are screening it in their classrooms. I love that. I really appreciate content that opens up minds and hearts.
SF: Yes! Obviously, African Americans can already relate and identify with Racey. But I think our series shines a light for the caucasian community to recognize the insensitivity and ignorance that is still alive and well in the American work environment.
There are a lot of funny moments, especially, during season one, in the Let’s Talk About Hair episode. Do you all just stop and laugh when filming?
SF: Yes, and we laughed during filming! A lot of laughs.
AD: I’ve laughed until I’ve fallen down on the ground and rolled into the fetal position.
So, it’s season two, and there is a new (black) CEO, what can viewers look forward to seeing this season?
AD: Many more antics and it’s not on ‘the down low’ like in season two, a lot more rises to the surface.
SF: There is a lot of tension between Kathy and the new boss, and Racey gets a boyfriend!
Do you all ever have race discussions behind the camera?
SF: Not really. Honestly we all just get along and even though we are all different races, it never is something that I really think about. Certainly, I never think about opening a discussion about it on set.
AD: Not really. We mostly talk about acting, our personal lives and current events. We laugh a lot.
What is the chemistry like between cast members?
AD: Behind the scenes we get along great!!! I know, boring but, true! We’re all there working for the love of telling these stories.
SF: It’s awesome – it’s real. We all really enjoy and respect one another. I can honestly say that I genuinely like everyone in the cast and crew, and I look forward to seeing them and working with them. That is a rare gift in our industry.
Check out the season two premiere episode.