“Faking It” EP Carter Covington on the finale and the future of Karmy

After watching the season finale of Faking It, many AE readers wanted to have a word with Carter Covington, the executive producer.  I was lucky enough to have several words. The result was a great dialogue about the show, the finale, and the future.

CarterCovington

AfterEllen.com: I’m really excited to talk to you, and I don’t want to do this as a typical interview because I think this is a really great moment just to have a conversation. Especially since I write for AfterEllen and those are some of the people who have the strongest feelings about Faking It and the finale episode in particular. I don’t have any questions written down; just playin’ it fast and loose. 

Carter Covington: I would love to have a conversation about it.  I knew it was going to land with a boom and it has.

AE: It definitely has. And it leaked.  So you got a taste of the reaction when it was released in Canada. 

CC: It was really unfortunate because I wanted the finale to air and people to be able to follow my tweets and look at the articles I’d done. I wanted the fans who were really upset about what this means for Amy’s character to have some sort of resource to hear me say I’m not making Amy straight.  That’s not where we headed.  And there’s a reason why we’re doing this.  I’m not just doing it to make everyone hurt.  I’m doing it because I think it’s the best thing long term for this story.

AE: That’s to be wished for.  So, if you had to do it again—after getting to see some of the reactions–would you make the same decision? 

CC: You know, I would.  I am telling the story that I’ve been wanting to tell, which is a girl discovery of her own sexual identity. And I feel like that’s not a one season story.

AE: It wasn’t for me. It’s like a soap opera; it comes on every day. 

CC: For me too.  I mean, I started realizing I was gay early on but I didn’t start admitting it to myself until my early twenties. And that process took a long time. And I think because the show is set in this accepting school, and we’ve been so inside Amy’s feelings, people have wanted to believe that she’s farther along on this journey than she actually is.  And I think people really want to claim her, you know? Everybody wants Amy.

AE: Well, god, have you seen Rita Volk? Who wouldn’t want to claim her? 

CC: I know!  So you asked if I regret it, and I would say I don’t regret it; I think what I probably regret is when episode four aired, when she said “I’m a Karmasexual,” I think I probably could have been a little more open to everyone about how she has not defined herself.  Just to give everybody a little more caution. Because I really saw people running with that episode and onward as being a gay character following a lesbian storyline. And, really what I want to say is Amy is somewhere on the spectrum, and we’re following her as she figures it out. And I think because people went further in their mind than I probably intended them to go, I think it hurt more in the finale. I think it was, just, really painful.

AE: Yeah, and you know media coverage of all this stuff tends to be so reductive and half the people writing about it are straight or not really familiar so they write it as “uh she’s a lesbian” and then it gets picked up over and over again and just snowballs. 

CC: Yeah, and I think what this process is teaching me is I’m gonna have to trust that I know my own intentions for this story are good. My intentions for this story are to share my experience of coming out, and to let people understand how I felt. And how alone I felt and how I made mistakes and couldn’t figure it out and it was really frustrating.  And how I longed to be with people. As long as I stay true to what my experience has been, and filter that through these characters, then I’ll be proud of the show forever. And I think that’s why people have responded to Amy, is because I connect with the material on a very personal level. I’m not writing this as a straight guy who has no idea what these issues are like, I’m writing as someone who’s struggled with them myself.

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