EXCLUSIVE: Lindsey Shaw talks butch style, puppy love and snogging Shay Mitchell


AE: The writers have given you a lot to do with Paige: swimming stunts, karaoke, biking, running, you were falling over drunk a couple of episodes ago. What is your favorite Paige to play?
I love how much I’ve gotten to do as Paige. It’s a dream, all of it. But my favorite by far is this season with Emily. There are some scenes — a couple of them have already aired — where the intimacy just blows me away. I love the levels I’m getting to go to with Shay [Mitchell], acting-wise. Paige and Emily’s relationship is so much more trusting, and sweet, and — well, finally a relationship. I love playing the crazy stuff, of course, but the scenes where I get to cherish Emily are my favorite. I’m looking at Shay when we’re shooting and realizing how wonderful this story is. The scene by the pool is one of my favorites. You just want to see them have a peace for a second. They’ve been through so much.

AE: Yeah, that pool scene was obviously a favorite with our readers. What do you think it is about Paige and Emily’s relationship that makes it so relatable?
I think Paige has finally shown Emily all of herself. The light, the dark, the all of it. And Emily is willing to accept her for all of who she is. They have these shared experiences, and obviously so much desire, and now that Paige is whole, Emily has something to hold onto. Emily extended real compassion and Paige chose to trust in that compassion.

AE: What has been your favorite Paily scene so far?
Well, the pool has got to be one of my favorites. And the one where Emily can’t go to the Katy Perry movie, so I went over and ended up trying to put that tie on her. It was just such a crazy intimate moment that was bookended by all these words, words, words. But in the middle of all the talking, there’s a realization that Paige isn’t alone in her desire. Their chemistry rekindles. I love that scene. And there are a few coming up that are just ridiculous.

AE: Ridiculous in what way? You never know, in Rosewood, what somebody means when they say “ridiculous.” Like you’re going to murder someone, or …?
Ridiculous as in “ridiculously awesome.” And ridiculous as in “Oh, God, I need to go throw up. Paige, what are you doing?!”

AE: I love that about Paige. She’s so charged, you literally have no idea what she’s going to do next.
She’s so real in that way. She just doesn’t have the social skills to cover all these emotions that she has. She’s so passionate, but sometimes that passion just erupts in the most ridiculous ways. The writers are feeding me gold, man. It’s just a dream.

AE: Are we going to see Paige interact with any of the other Liars? I think I’ve seen some promo photos of her in a scene with Spencer, which, I’ll be honest, has been my main dream since Paige: Day One.
Truly, outside of Paily, my scenes with Spencer are some of my favorites of the whole time I’ve been on set. Troian is one of the first main cast I’ve worked with outside of Shay, and it was such a different energy. It’s interesting because Spencer Hastings is a beast and Paige McCullers is nothing if not strong, so it’s basically like two giants getting ready to rumble. It was phenomenal to work with Troian. I was dying for a scene with Spencer, and the writers wrote the perfect one.

Also, I can’t say who or when, but Paige is going to make the rounds in Rosewood. I’m working with lots of other people now.

AE: Paige is going to be around through the whole third season, right? Not just through the summer finale?
As far as I know, yes.

AE: Awesome! But did you know Paige is leading the ABC Family poll about who is the capital-A #BetrAyar? You have 30 percent of the votes right now.
Yeah? OK, good. Yeah, good. You vote me up! Do it!

AE: Spoken like a true Paige McCullers. Now that you’re on Twitter, are you getting to see feedback from your lesbian and bisexual fans? To see how it getting better for Paige has helped them know it can get better for them?
The fan response — the first time we did an interview and you read me some of the fan response, I was just overwhelmed. Truly. And the way the fans have reached out to me on Twitter to say what Paige means to them, that kind of response is the reason why I want to act: to reach people, and touch people’s lives. Playing this role is so emotionally fulfilling to me. And I want it to be that way for the fans too. I want to keep reaching out to them, keep talking to them.

AE: And your dog Gypsy is on Twitter, right?
Oh, yes. It’s not me, but I definitely follow and interact with him like he’s my actual dog. When I saw it, I lost my mind. I followed him immediately.

AE: What about a Gypsy Shaw cameo on the show?
Yes! He’s perfect for it: low to the ground, sneaky, kind of a jerk. I feel like he’d get a lot of answers really quickly. He’s also kind of chubby, so he could probably sit on one of the girls and choke out some information. Gypsy would bust the “A” case wide open!

Pretty Little Liars airs tonight and all the best Tuesday nights on ABC Family.

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