Tucked away in an unsuspecting neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley are the offices and stages of the CW series “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” The freshman musical-comedy was co-created by star Rachel Bloom, who plays Rebecca, and Aline Brosh McKenna, who oversees the writing staff. Things will gear back up in a few weeks for season two, after the finale left several of the show’s central relationships in flux. McKenna’s comfortable office includes a basket full of jackets in case it gets cold, ceramics made by her 16-year-old son, and a pillow with Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s face on it.
One wall of her office is covered in vintage portraits of women she’s collected over the years, mostly from flea markets. “My husband is not fond of them,” she admits. “He finds them sad and creepy. But I love them. So I’m very excited I have a place to put them.”
CALLING THE SHOTS
She made her directorial debut with the “Crazy Ex” season finale, and kept the clapper from the episode. One of her favorite moments is when Rebecca and friend Paula (Donna Lynne Champlin) are reunited and shower each other with compliments. “All the stuff they say when they come together was completely improvised,” she says. “I told them to just start talking. If I had not said cut, they’d still be there doing it.”
TIMING IS KEY
“Crazy Ex” is set in the L.A. suburb of West Covina (“Two hours from the beach!”), and residents couldn’t be more thrilled — so much so that the outgoing mayor gave the show the key to the city. “We love West Covina, we have a great relationship with them,” says McKenna. “We shoot on location as much as we can.”