AE: Fans, particularly your gay female fans – which is our readership
– have really responded to Lauren. Did you expect that and why do you think they’ve responded to her so much?
ZP: No, I certainly didn’t expect the reaction and the response. It has been overwhelming in the most amazing way. I don’t know if I could articulate a single reason why people have responded so strongly. I think to some degree certainly the lesbian community has responded strongly because I think it’s representative of a relationship that is honest and real and genuine. And I have said this so many times, but Anna and I are so committed to making sure the dynamic between Lauren and Bo is one that is real and has depth. It was important to the two of us that it was portrayed that way. I hope and think that to that degree we have.
It is just a real relationship. One of the things about the show is that it’s never sort of mentioned that it’s two women and that it’s a gay relationship. It just is one. It never comes up as a conversation piece that they’re both women. It is just the way that it is and I love that. And I feel that’s the way the world should be. That people should love who they love. This show is a great example of that. No one talks about the fact that Dyson is a boy. I think people have responded because it’s just a relationship that matters and they love each other and care about each other. Perhaps that’s why.
AE: It is really interesting that the show has taken this very matter-of-fact approach to sexuality where it is not discussed and labeled, it just is. I am guessing that was intentional and do you think that’s representative of how people deal with sexuality now or you’d like people to deal with sexuality?
ZP: Yeah, I think that we are in a time in this timeline of the world where sexuality is just becoming what it is and it’s not quite the conversation piece that perhaps it was some years ago or even not that long ago. I think the show is great that way. I love so much that there is never the conversation that they’re women, or that Dyson is not a woman or that there is any judgment on her sexuality. She’s a succubus and a female who sleeps with lots of people, and there’s no judgment on that. Certainly there is more judgment in our society for women who do that as opposed to men who do that, and the show never references that. It just is what it is and I love that
AE: To put labels on things, do you think Lauren’s character actually is a lesbian? And do you feel a responsibility playing a queer character on television?
ZP: I think everything would suggest that she is a lesbian. It wouldn’t surprise me because of the nature of the show if something changed down the road. But I only say that because it wouldn’t surprise me because anything could happen on this show. But everything we know about her up until this point, which is what I know too, suggests that she is a lesbian. And, absolutely I feel a responsibility for sure. As an actor I want to be as truthful as I can in any character and this is no different. Because the fan response has been so big and so strong that I have felt more of a responsibility to make sure that I am committed to bringing that character to life in a three-dimensional way that honors who she is. Lauren is such a great character to play. She is pretty complicated and layerrd and also a lesbian. And I’m thrilled to be able to play her.
AE: How are you different from Lauren? From past interviews you seem to have a really good sense of humor. Do you wish you could bring that more to the show, or do you wish you could kick ass more on the show? I saw you kick ass on Nikita.
ZP: [Laughs] Oh, yeah, Lauren and that character were a little different. Well, I think we’re different in a lot of ways. I think she is really fearful and does overcome it to some degree. But I don’t know if I would have taken what she took for as long as she has done. She has really been subservient to the Ash and Zoie I don’t know is as subservient as that in her life, if I can talk about myself in the third person. In that way, I think I enjoy life a lot more than Lauren currently does and I think in part that’s her position in the world of the Fae. There’s not a lot of time for her to have a lot of fun. So we’re pretty different. But I can be pretty nerdy though. We might be equally nerdy.
AE: Obviously the fans have really responded to Lauren and you’ve become the target of a lot of female attention and adoration. How do you feel about all that Dr. Hotpants/Doccubus love that’s coming towards you?
ZP: [Laughs] I don’t know how I feel. It’s great. I mean, any kind of positive attention is good. I’m so thrilled that people have responded in a positive way. The alternative could have been difficult. So I think it’s great that people are enjoying the character. I was saying to someone the other day, I seem to have a lot more marriage proposals nowadays than I ever had in my life.
AE: Well I’m telling you, just so you know, if your door swings this way or considers swinging this way, you will never be single.
ZP: [Laughs] Oh, good, well I will certainly take that into consideration.
AE: Just putting it out there, just so you know.
ZP: Thank you, that’s good to know.