Before the late-September premiere of all of the networks’ new fall fare, FX did what it tends to do best – the cable network rolled out a stellar pilot for a new character-driven series, which puts a new spin on an old genre. “Terriers” (starring Donal Logue and Michael Raymond-James) premiered last week to strong reviews…. Episode two airs tonight at 10 PM. The show’s premise is simple – it’s a procedural private investigator buddy drama. What makes it unique are its character-driven storylines – the quirky and low-rent leads in a sleepy Southern California beach town are unlikely protagonists and best friends, both in their work and their personal lives.
Breakout actress Kimberly Quinn plays Grethen Dolworth, the ex-wife of lead character Hank Dolworth (Logue), a now sober ex-cop still struggling with his addictions. Their lingering emotional attachment to each other sits at the center of the drama.
AccessHollywood.com recently caught up with Kimberly to talk about what makes this fun new show tick, and why serendipity helped her land this role.
AccessHollywood.com: What makes this show different and what attracted you to it?
Kimberly Quinn: Well, it’s a procedural show. But I think the characters take a forefront in the show, because they’re so authentic and real. You can touch them almost. You don’t see that in procedurals very often. It’s usually about the business that the characters are involved in, and ‘Let’s solve this, and solve that.’ I think that’s what makes this show different and special, and it’s what attracted me to the part. On the audition, it all came from my heart… and it just worked. We related to each other more humanly, as opposed to scientifically, so to speak.
AccessHollywood.com: Cable based networks are really leading in character-based shows like this right now? Is this a show which could only be on cable?
Kimberly Quinn: I hope that the trend goes across the board. If the trend is for more character-driven pieces, where people can relate more – as opposed to the traditional procedural – I think TV would just go through the roof.
AccessHollywood.com: Tell me about your character, Grechen? You get the sense that she has a lot of back-story to share?
Kimberly Quinn: Gretchen… oh god… I feel for her, I do. It’s a tough one. I think when you’re in a relationship and you’re dealing with an addictive behavior… and Hank (her husband in the show) is an ex-alcoholic… those kinds of relationships don’t go normally — the addiction always kind of gets in the way of the relationship. It’s clear that it’s not going to work out. For Gretchen, there are so many strings attached which make her not complete with Hank. She wants to move on, and she tries to, but it’s extremely hard. There’s always that feeling of, “Maybe one day… maybe we could…” She’s trying to take the high road, and she wants to move on — she’s getting married again – but there’s always Hank in the back of her mind. But for the most part, she’s trying to take the higher road.
AccessHollywood.com: It seems like there are definitely feelings there:
Kimberly Quinn: I don’t know if the relationship will ever be resolved. Hank obviously still loves her. And I think it’s really hard for her to see that. She obviously still has feelings too. You will learn why they’re not together… and you will see why they’re not together. And you’ll see why she needs to clean her slate of him.
AccessHollywood.com: Explain the show’s tag line to me — “too small to fail” – to what does that refer?
Kimberly Quinn: It’s about the two (lead) boys – Hank and Britt – they’re just so scrappy and so down-and-out. They just get by with the skin of their teeth every day, and they just stumble into things. As humans, we want to value ourselves at every level. They’ve taken some shots along the way. I think they have a healthy ego thinking that they’re going to rise up.
AccessHollywood.com: How has this show affected your career path? What does it represent as a next step for you?
Kimberly Quinn: I didn’t start acting until my late-20’s. So, I feel pretty blessed to say that I’ve been a quote-unquote “Working Actor” for all of these years. My career’s consisted of all of those things that you hope would one day lead to being a series regular, and then your dreams grow from there. My career has been very steady and I’ve been blessed in that I’ve been given everything that I can handle, at the right time. I did my first pilot last year for Showtime with Tim Robbins (for “Possible Side Effects”)… and that really helped me… I mean, it’s Tim Robbins. What a great, great first show out of the gate that was for me. After that show, I took a little time off because my dad then got ill and passed away. And then I got this audition three days after my dad passed away – and four days later I was hired, and I went straight to work. So, I think it was just in the cards. God has his plan and I’m just going along with it.
AccessHollywood.com: You’re also a full-time mom… what’s that balance like for you?
Kimberly Quinn: The hardest part is leaving my family to go to work – the show films in San Diego. I have a 4-year-old and a 14-year-old, and think I missed a recital and a graduation, and they were like “It’s OK mommy, we’ll take pictures.” It was my upset though… they were just fine! I just give them a kiss and a hug and let them know that I love them every day. But the balance is great.
The boys (of “Terriers”) carry the show, and I just come in (down to San Diego) to tape twice a week… so I can balance that with the family life. I pop down to San Diego, and two days later, I’m home. I’m able to go back and forth and actually have a life with my family. I’m very grateful for that.
AccessHollywood.com: Are you done taping for this season already?
Kimberly Quinn: We’re all done! We’re just waiting till November to find out if we’re heading back!