Katy Mixon has been one of my favorite actresses, and her role in ABC’s American Housewife is an outstanding portrayal of every mom out there.
Growing up, ABC was one of the three networks, with sitcoms like “Happy Days, “Laverne and Shirley, Mork and Mindy and Charlie’s Angels. Today ABC is a major player in the networks, continuing with fantastic sitcoms like Downward Dog and American Housewife.
We arrived at the beige brick building on Riverside Drive, home of ABC, and rode the elevator to the fifth floor. We are here for “Second Breakfast,” something Katie Otto (Katy Mixon) loves on American Housewife. Scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, fresh fruit and more fill out plates as we sit down.
There is no mistaking Katy Mixon. She radiates in her beige dress with a cornflower blue print. She’s at the end of her pregnancy and seems to glow.
“Hi, Yall! ” she says in her infamous whisper. “Where do we begin?“
Her Southern drawl is the real deal, and she occasionally punctuates a word with a throaty growl.
“I’m so excited to meet every single one of you. Welcome to ABC.“
She sits at the head of the table.
She is beautiful.
She shares about her hit show, American Housewife.
“American Housewife is from the creator Sarah Dunn. This is her vision. It took off with Kenny Schwartz and Rick Weiner who are the show runner and an incredible writing staff writing staff. This tshow is certain situations from Sarah’s life. It’s been my job to recreate that. I could not be more unlike Sarah Dunn. I am originally from Pensacola, Florida. I’m from the South. I just turned thirty-six. Sarah Dunn is 43, but I play older in the show.”
She smiles often and flashes that side eye for which she is so famous.
Maybe it’s her southern roots, or she’s channeling her role as April Buchanon in Eastbound and Down, but when asked how she is similar to Katie Otto, Mixon replies:
“I rock n’ roll in a different way. I always have. I have always been quite fearless. I’ve never really let anxiety take a toll on me. I march to the beat of my own drum, I get back up on that horse and if I didn’t get it right, I’m going to do it again the next day. That’s my M.O. That’s how I’ve always rocked ‘n rolled it. Sarah Dunn is quite different from me. Which is a beautiful thing too.”
She landed the lead as Katie Otto on American Housewife right after Mike & Molly. She admits that she’s just not like Sarah Dunn (Katie Otto) at all.
“I don’t get mad at green juice. If you’re going to do yoga, I think that’s awesome. You’re bettering yourself. I love people.”
Then she whispers it again.
“I love people.”
There is a pause. Her brown eyes seem to dance at memories and then she continues,
“I am really spontaneous. I love celebrating people, what makes them happy. I am just so opposite of what Katie Otto is, which makes playing her just fun to play. I wanted to do a role that I’ve never done before. I don’t wear hardly any makeup in the show. We cover up head to toe. I wear really baggy clothes. It’s couldn’t be more opposite of what I’ve done in the past. I couldn’t be more grateful!”
Filming American Housewife ended three weeks ago, and Mixon says, “It all feels like a blur,” and then shares her favorite episode.
“I love BAG LADY (Season 1, Episode 16). I loved when she just went crazy on people. That was really fun. I love being able to do physical comedy. Physical stuff. Getting out of the house and being in the environment. I love that.”
Then, without a pause, her southern drawl shares another favorite.
“I love Zombie Run. I loved it! It was crazy. I must have run five miles in the period of five days. It was really insane!”
If you watch the show, you know Katie Otto is partial to AnnaKat, so it seemed natural to question if Katy Mixon has a favorite child actor.
“Favorite child actor? No? They’re all quite special. They’re all really, really lovely. I am such a person of divine appointment. I believe in that. The moment I met each one of them, I knew I was a part of something quite special.
I will never forget, I met sweet Julia, we were doing costume fittings, it was before the pilot. It was all crazy; nobody really knew what was gonna happen. She rounded the corner and I asked, ‘Are you my TV daughter?’.
She said, “YES!” Then she came in and gave me the biggest hug.
All three of them are just wonderful.”
Before Mixon’s arrival at ABC, we enjoyed Second Breakfast and watched American Housewife’s THE CLUB. Like every episode of American Housewife, it’s one that will resonate with Moms everywhere.
“It brings tears to my eyes. It’s one of the most special feelings. There are so many emotions, Honey. I could not be more grateful. I am having the time of my life. Being able to do what you love to do and being given the opportunity to do it, is quite incredible.”
“It’s the biggest gift in the world. Then to have people be able to receive it and relate to it. It’s just the best thing in the world. I am in a new dimension. I’ve never played a mom with three children. That’s been quite special. To be able to do that on camera, and evoke emotion.”
“When I signed on, I knew it was special. I felt like it didn’t matter what gender you are and what background you come from, everybody relates to insecurity. No matter whether you’re from Kansas, from Oregon, from Miami, or Wesport. Everybody’s got their Westport. Everybody’s got their little town, their situation that they say to themselves, ‘I don’t want to do this today. I don’t want to be in front of these people. People have that. This has been my anthem on the show.”
With her first child due in the next four weeks, Mixon talks motherhood and what characteristics she will take away from Katie Otto’s role as a mom.
“She’s really strong. I am really strong. I just rock n’ roll in a different way. I love her so much, that Katie Otto. I think she’s quite fearless. I’m quite fearless too, just doing it in a different way. I think she says what her mind think, and I think there’s power in saying what your mind says; telling it how it is. I believe you have to do it in the spirit of love. That’s where I come from. Not so much where Katie Otto comes from. I’m just going to be me. I’m going to just do me.”
Katy Mixon has played many roles, but if you’ve seen her in Hell or Highwater you know, her role really stood out. It is a very different part than we are used to seeing her in. The Indy movie was Oscar Nominated and well-received.
“Honey. It was quite wonderful and quite, quite specia. I got that the old-fashioned way. I went in a year and a half ago and auditioned for Richard Hicks. We were on hiatus from Mike & Molly Season 5. Two days later they asked, ‘Katy, can you come to New Mexico?’
“I said, ‘I can.'”
“I went to Clovis, New Mexico, Honey, with sweat under the boobs. Sweat in every crack. Doing it in one hundred ten degree weather. I knew I was part of something special, getting to work with Ben Foster, Jeff Bridges and Chris Pine. They don’t write movies like that. “
Then, Mixon takes us back to her training, her first job and shares everything.
“My background is theater, musical tehater, but theater. My very first acting job was at the Utah Shakespeare Festival, when I was 19. I played Capernia in JULIUS CAESAR.”
“I went to Carnegie Mellon Conservatory for four years.
This is the first summer I am not going to be working. I’m going to be a mommy. I am so excited!“
She shares she is having a boy.
On being pregnant, Mixon talks like she’s known us forever.
“It’s of another nature! It’s really crazy. You have to name a child for the rest of their life. No stress at all!”
Then her voice softens, and she shares an intimate side.
“Honey, I want my baby to do whatever he wants to do. I’m going to be such a big fan. I just want to introduce him to the world. Whether it’s a mathematician or a rock band, I just want to encourage. We just want to encourage him to be who he’s meant to be.”
On having more children:
“Yes! I want to try! In my mind I have it. I’m not a real planner. I’m real spontaneous. With children I tell myself, I’m going to handle this for the next four year. We’re going to go one, two, three, four.’ But things change. Nobody tells you that when you’re pregnant it’s a year. You. Are. Literally. Pregnant. For. A. Year!
You can’t do anything. It’s of another nature.
No hot tub.”
Someone mentions alcohol.
Mixon answers, “I went with the hot tub.” and flashes her amazing smile and that sly side-eye.
American Housewife finale airs on May 16.
And then we had a Meet and Greet. There I was one on one with Katy Mixon. I told her how proud I was that she had played these secondary roles and she had made it. She had landed her first lead role and I loved her.
She said, “I did it, Honey.”
And then I cried. She cried. Here we are with our ugly crying faces.
and then she hugged me and I felt like everything was going to be okay.
It’s “The CLUB” episode, which I have seen and loved!
KATIE PANICS AT THE IDEA OF APPEARING IN A BATHING SUIT IN PUBLIC, ON ‘AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE.’
“The Club” – When Anna-Kat develops a fear of water and stops bathing, her therapist suggests the Ottos get her to go swimming. But can Katie get over own her fear of wearing a bathing suit in public at the Westport Country Club so she can help her kid out?
Meanwhile, Oliver gives his dad a style makeover after students at the college give Greg a low “jalapeño” score, on “American Housewife,” airing TUESDAY, MAY 2 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on The ABC Television Network.
“American Housewife” stars Katy Mixon as Katie Otto, Diedrich Bader as Greg Otto, Meg Donnelly as Taylor, Daniel DiMaggio as Oliver, Julia Butters as Anna-Kat, Carly Hughes as Angela and Ali Wong as Doris.
Guest starring is Miya Cech as Marigold and Alexa Sutherland as the teenage lifeguard.
“The Club” was written by Brian Donovan & Ed Herro and directed by David Bertman.