The black-ish prequel, mixed-ish is a series set in the 1980s that follows a young Rainbow Johnson (Arica Himmel) as she and her mixed-race family adjust to life in the burbs after spending years on a commune. The show is now in its second season and has become a favorite amongst fans thanks to its subtle storytelling about what it really means and doesn’t mean to be a biracial child, in addition to many hilarious scenes and just as many heartfelt moments.
Distractify spoke exclusively with actress Christina Anthony — who plays Aunt Denise in the hit ABC show — about what will transpire in the rest of Season 2. Find out what she had to say about the changes in her character’s life, Denise and Paul’s (Mark-Paul Gosselaar) relationship, and more!
Check out our Q&A below. (Editor's note: This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.)
Christina Anthony talks 'Mixed-ish' Season 2 (and 3).
Distractify: In Season 2, everyone’s characters seem to have evolved since last season. How has Denise evolved?
Christina Anthony: Oh, I love it now that she's really focused on her career, which I think is, you know, is something that it happens to everybody. For her, it's happening later in life, but with the help of her sister and sister’s father-in-law, she’s really trying to figure it out. Denise left her job at Pan Am and now is working at a law firm. Before that, she just skated through life, and now she knows she has to push herself and get it together.
D: We love Denise aka Aunt Dee Dee. How does Denise like her new job?
CA: She's terrible at it, but she likes working there. Denise is working with Alicia, and being that her sister was the only Black person at the firm all this time, it's a special moment that I think a lot of Black people can relate to. Like, oh my gosh wow, there's another Black woman in the coffee room! Hopefully, we become a support system for one another. In tonight's episode, viewers will see Denise all day at work, and she's completely overwhelmed.
D: We heard that you have a big moment in Episode 6, where you’re doing Eddie Murphy impressions. Thus far, what has been your favorite moment you’ve had on mixed-ish?
CA: I think it's tonight's episode. There are so many different elements. I'm excited for fans to see my impressions. Eddie Murphy is everything and is an absolute inspiration to me. In a very subtle way, we pay tribute to Ms. Pac-Man. There are so many fun things that go on. It's a great episode where viewers get to see deeper relationships between different characters.
D: Are there any Season 2 spoilers you can share with us?
CA: Sure, some people will be getting girlfriends and boyfriends, but I can’t say who. There's a lot more dating going on this season.
D: Can you give us a hint about your favorite moment that's yet to come in Season 2?
CA: There's an entire episode dedicated to Denise and Paul spending the whole day together. We finally try to bury the hatchet and become friends. It was such a fun week shooting this episode.
D: What would you like to see happen in a potential Season 3 of mixed-ish?
CA: I’d like to see Denise more established, and I don’t know what happens at the law firm, but I would love to see her keep pursuing this career and really going for it.
D: Are there going to be any more crossovers with black-ish?
CA: It’s a total surprise to all of us when they happen, so there could be one and I don’t know about it yet.
D: What do you want the viewers to come away with at the end of the season?
CA: I think on the first season, we were preaching a message of, hey, it's OK to be different, and it's OK if you don't feel like you fit in; you'll find your place and get your footing. This year I hope the message that people take away from this season is that it requires all kinds of people to make a family. Also, there will be good and bad experiences along the way, and there will be some family members who have it together and who don't, and that's alright.
Mixed-ish airs on Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on ABC.