Jessalyn Gilsig discusses League of Doom, future for Will and TerriMonday, March 21, 2011
“Doom” is just around the corner.
Jessalyn Gilsig’s infamous character on Glee, Terri Schuester, is headed back to McKinley High and she’s showing no mercy.
Collaborating with the Glee club’s biggest rival, Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch), Terri is drafted in a mission to destroy the club before the Nationals competition.
“Sue assembles the League of Doom,” said Gilsig. “She recruits us.”
“Us” refers to new Vocal Adrenaline coach Dustin Goolsby (Cheyenne Jackson) and former McKinley glee club director Sandy (Stephen Tobolowsky).
“We get code names,” she adds with a laugh. “Mine is ‘The Honey Badger.’”
“Look up ‘Honey Badger voice-over’ on YouTube,” Gilsig said. “It is Terri.”
“At first I thought it was cool that we all had code names but after I saw the video I thought ‘that’s how they see me?’”
Terri Schuester, or rather ‘Terri Del Monico’ post-divorce, is best known on Glee as Will Schuester’s (Matthew Morrison) manipulative ex-wife who faked a pregnancy in order to keep Schuester from stepping out with WMHS guidance counselor Emma Pillsbury (Jayma Mays).
“Terri starts as the weakest contributor but once everyone fails, she becomes the Achilles’ heel,” Gilsig said, calling Terri the “executioner” of the “League.” Gilsig, who describes her character as “the ultimate dream girl”, says “I love playing Terri so much.”
“I love figuring out her logic and how she rationalizes. She has her own reality,” she added. “I also love the hair. Most of it is not mine. She’s so physically different than anything I am.”
“My hope was that if you think about it, it’s all done in the name of her love for Will,” Gilsig said of her character’s scandalous schemes.
Gilsig also noted that Glee fans often assume that she’s her character in real life.
“People call me Mrs. Schuester all the time,” Gilsig said. “I have people come up to me and talk to me like I’m Terri. They say ‘what was he thinking’ and expect me to know what they’re talking about,” she said. “But the tide has turned a little bit. People are starting to miss her.” She says that fans encourage her return to the show to add “spice” and “drama.”
Recently, Gilsig shared a scene with Gwyneth Paltrow on Glee’s “The Substitute” episode. “It was so fun to mess with her,” Gilsig said. “She’s a great person.” “It was fun hazing someone on the show,” she adds with a laugh. She says discussing future potential guest stars on Glee is a “sensitive topic” and she “doesn’t care” who creators Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, and Ian Brennan bring onto the set because she fears the hype over guest stars “overshadows how talented the rest of the cast is, especially the kids.”
“These amazing kids are willing to play complex, vulnerable characters,” Gilsig said.
“The writing is so smart,” she adds, calling it “crass” and “a little bit cutting.”
“The audience created this show and I know the audience love these characters.”
Her hope is that the audience gets to see “more” of Terri in upcoming episodes.
“I’d like to be back for 100% of the remaining episodes,” Gilsig said. “But I have no idea.”
She does know that the episode that features the “League of Doom” is titled “Rumors.”
(Whether “Rumors” is simply a working title or a reference to Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 “Rumours” album which show creator Ryan Murphy expressed interest in covering is undetermined.)
“I’d love to see more interaction,” she said of Will and Terri’s relationship.
“Terri is hands down the woman Will’s meant to be with.”
“They have strong physical chemistry. There’s something adult about Will and Terri’s relationship,” Gilsig added. “Besides, Emma won’t have sex so what’s the point of that?”