Andrea Roth Of 'Rescue Me' Talks About Her Controversial Sex Scene, Upcoming Season
In a show that thrives on character chemistry, Roth says the fun keeps going when the cameras stop rolling. "We hate each other," she jokes about her cast mates. Roth recently got together With Mike Lombardi (Probie) and Callie Thorne (Sheila) to watch scary movies. "Mikey actually had a little pajama party for Callie and I," says Roth. "He's a doll. I'm not sure you can get any sweeter than him."
She also had a shout out for Danny Sunjata, who plays Franco. "He is too damn pretty. He's a sweetheart too."
Because the men far outnumber the women in the cast, Roth was happy to spend time with Diane Farr, who played a female firefighter on the first two seasons, and Callie Thorne, who plays Tommy's former lover Sheila.
"I was actually greatly relieved to have a little more estrogen on the show," she said of her female costars.
But one of the most interesting relationships is the onscreen one between Roth & Leary, who play on again/off again couple Janet and Tommy Gavin. And you can't talk about Tommy and Janet without mentioning last season's controversial sex scene.
"I stand by that scene. I'm very proud of it," insists Roth.
Last season Tommy & Janet were involved in a sex scene that was not exactly consensual. Controversy arose because Janet appeared to have enjoyed the encounter.
"I thought it was a very complex and highly psychological scene between two very dysfunctional human beings," Roth explains.
Some critics believed the show was condoning rape. "That's silly," Roth says, explaining that Janet and Tommy have a very complicated relationship and don't know how to keep it under control. The couple is very dysfunctional and is unable to communicate.
She adds, "Some people found that scene sexy, including women."
In a show that can be offensive at times, Roth says Denis Leary isn't constrained by being politically correct. "Denis Leary is not a man to be fearful of pushing boundaries," she explains. "If we were the Cleavers, no one would watch it. Drama needs conflict."
Tommy and Janet experienced more difficulties after Janet began dating Tommy's brother Johnny (Dean Winters). When Roth read the script about their burgeoning relationship, she was horrified. "I thought it was despicable. It was the lowest anyone can go."
But Roth learned to separate her own morals from those of her character's. "I had to divorce myself from wanting to be nice," she says, explaining that Janet had just lost her son and was in a lot of pain. And Johnny had been in love with her since high school. "People can be seduced by kindness and attentiveness," Roth says.
This season Janet & Tommy are living together, platonically, and raising an infant that could be either Tommy's or Johnny's. And Janet is not coping well. She "is not comfortable or at peace with having that child," Roth explains. "We haven't even committed to naming the baby."
So what's next for Janet and Tommy? "I think there is always hope for the two of them, " Roth says. "They somehow both hold on to how good it once was."
Not surprisingly, all is not calm in the land of "Rescue Me." Be on the lookout for something big to come up. Roth promises fans something huge is going to happen between Janet and Tommy. "It's the darkest, craziest thing he has ever done on our show … He does something horrible to me," Roth teases.
Roth still has four episodes to shoot and is in the dark about how it will end: "I have no idea what could happen to my character." She adds, "Who knows, maybe this year the big ending finale might not be drama with [Janet]."
-Photos of Andrea Roth
-"Rescue Me" season four premiere photos
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