'Faking It' Season 1 finale: Katie Stevens, Rita Volk break down the shocking hookup
Had the network decided to pass on bringing the new hit comedy series back for a second season, the "Karmy" army probably would have rioted and marched to MTV's offices with pitchforks and torches in hand. How could "Faking It" just end so abruptly after Amy -- rejected by Karma after confessing her love for her best friend -- ends up in bed ... with Liam, heartbroken himself after finding out Karma had been lying to him about being with Amy?
That's right, the Season 1 finale ended with the best friend and the boyfriend drunkenly hooking up after getting hurt by the same girl. Whoa.
After watching the game-changing episode, "Burnt Toast," Zap2it had more than a few questions, so we got Katie Stevens and Rita Volk on the line to talk about Karma and Amy's emotional confrontation, Amy and Liam's shocking hookup and where this leaves us for Season 2. Check out the full Q&A below:
Zap2it: That cliffhanger ending. I mean, whoa. What went through your minds when you read the script and got to that final scene with Liam and Amy?
Rita Volk: I am going to get so much hate mail!
Katie Stevens: Well you know what, Karma's been getting it all season. Oh, how the tables have turned. [ laughs]
RV: I was very shocked. But here's the thing, I think it kind of makes sense for my character. I think she does get to the point where she's just fed up and has been really hurt by everything that Karma's done. And she's also been dealing with this internal struggle where she doesn't really know what she's feeling, and she doesn't have her best friend there to get her through it because her feelings are for her best friend. All of this stuff just piles on top of each other and leads her to make this really big mistake. As surprising as her action is, if you really think about it, there's a lot of truth to it. This is someone who has been very, very hurt and she just makes a mistake.
What really got me is that not only is Amy deliberately hurting Karma by hooking up with Liam, but she's also hooking up with a guy, regardless of who it is. What went into Amy's choice to hook up with a guy when she's been struggling with feelings for a girl all season?
RV: From what I know about the character and just people in general, obviously she's mad. She's very angry, and when you're angry, you're going to want justice and you're going to want to hurt the person who hurt you. As awful as it sounds, I think that's going through Amy's head. The other, bigger part of it is that if I put myself into her situation, she's thinking that, "I'm liking girls but that's not working out so well for me. I have all these feelings but I wind up getting hurt." Her sleeping with Liam is just a way to bury that because he's a guy. It doesn't even matter that it's Liam to her, it's just that she wanted a guy. It's her effort to not be a lesbian. She's trying to deny her feelings which won't work, because that's not who she is. Considering that she's LGBT, it's not going to turn out very well.
KS: I think that [creator] Carter [Covington] said it best -- I know that people are going to be upset with Amy over that mistake but I think that it's also important for them to remember that even though she's been questioning these feelings the entire season, that's what she's been doing. She's been questioning her sexuality. She hasn't been labeled as a lesbian yet. She's just questioning. I don't think what happened is her wanting to be with Liam at all. I think it's more of that they're both angry at the same person and they both want to hurt the same person and that's the only way to feel like they can at that moment, even if it's wrong.
RV: And Liam just happens to be there. I think that she probably would have made that mistake with someone else that came along anyways. I think there's a very, very big level of desperation that she's feeling, and she and Liam are both mad at the same person, like Katie said, and that's the one time in the whole show where they can bond over something. Clearly they need each other even if they don't like each other, and they're bonding over their hate for Karma in that moment.
Now let's talk about Amy's toast for a second, because that speech changed everything for everyone. Do you think Amy planned on blurting out her real feelings, or was that an accident on her part?
KS: I don't think she planned on making that her speech at the wedding, and confessing her feelings. I think that she was just speaking from the heart without realizing that everyone would realize what she meant and that Karma would realize what she really meant. Everything built up for Amy, her frustrations with Karma and Liam and everything all season, so it all just came out.
RV: Yeah, I agree. She couldn't handle it anymore.
What was it like for both of you to film that emotional confrontation after the toast, when Amy finally confessed her feelings to Karma but Karma rejected her?
KS: It was really easy to cry because when we were filming it, we didn't know if we were going to get a second season or how long this was going to last, and that was the very last scene that I shot with Rita. It was so easy to cry because we filmed this beautiful work of art with "Faking It," and then to have that be the end of it, it was just so sad and almost full circle. You know, the last scene that we shot when we did the pilot was the kiss and the last scene we shot of the season was the falling out and the realization and the confession. For our characters to finally get to the place where everything is laid out on the table, it was beautiful.
RV: Yeah, there were a lot of tears. Like Katie said, that was our last scene together and at that point, we connected as ourselves, as Katie and Rita, as well as with our characters, so it was huge. And for Amy, there was so much buildup and inner turmoil all season long, so when it finally came out I just felt for her. I got so emotional. And then on the technical side, Carter and the writers were so sensitive to how we felt and even asked us how we wanted it shot. They made sure that was the last scene we shot, and it was just so immensely amazing that they gave us that input and cared about how we felt.
Katie, Karma was left completely alone at the end of the finale which was so heartbreaking to watch. She lost her boyfriend and her best friend all in one night. Does Karma blame herself for her situation, or is she placing blame elsewhere?
KS: I mean, Karma knows exactly what she's done. And I think in episode 7 she realizes that she's put everyone in this tough position and now on top of that, she's realizing that Amy has feelings for her, and that's the point where she's like, "Oh crap." When she finds out that it's been going on for weeks now, she realizes that she really messed up. Her being upset at the end of the episode after losing everything, she knows it's her own fault. But she didn't think she would lose everything like that.
All season long, it's been easy to view Karma as the one who's wrong because the audience knew all the sides of the story, but to Karma, she had no idea how much she was hurting Amy. Katie, what was it like portraying Karma when she finally realized what she's been doing to her best friend all this time?
KS: It was a relief. Because I know if I was a viewer of "Faking It," I would feel for Amy. You yell at your TV, you yell at Karma for not realizing it, but as an actor, I had to step away from that. I had to put myself in Karma's shoes. She's just a 15-year-old girl pining after the cute boy at school, and telling her best friend about it. That's what I did at 15. Karma has no idea what's going on with Amy so she doesn't know that she's doing anything wrong or hurtful. And while Karma is ignorant to that, she also has these really endearing moments where she shows how good of a friend she is to Amy. I think those moments give Karma her humanity back and then at the end of the season, to have it all come full circle, I'm happy it happened because I think it's a major growing up moment for her.
Thank goodness we now know that "Faking It" is coming back for Season 2, especially in light of everything that went down in this crazy finale. In your opinion, where does this leave us for Season 2?
KS: I couldn't predict even anything that they did in Season 1, so I can't even predict where it would go from here. We were all just keeping our fingers crossed that we would get a Season 2 so we could find out where this will even go.
RV: The kicker for Amy is now going to be, "Oh my god, I made this huge mistake." And she's probably going to have to hide that now. Amy is just continuously having to hide everything all the time. [laughs] It will be interesting to see how all of that plays out and hopefully Karma finds out what Amy did and how all of that goes down. I have full confidence in our writers. They're amazing and I know they'll think of some really awesome stuff.
And most importantly, that dance sequence at the wedding. So. Awesome. Did you guys make that up?
KS: [laughs] We actually got to work with Neil Haskell from "So You Think You Can Dance" because we all wanted to make it look like it was something Amy and Karma have been doing their whole lives. It was so fun and I love that song, "Straight Up." It was great because there is such heaviness to the subject of our show, so to have those lighthearted moments like our dance helps balance that out. It helps you see how deep their friendship goes above all else and regardless of the drama they're dealing with. They've known each other forever, you know?
RV: And actually, that scene was cut down a lot, unfortunately, to make the episode fit for time. But it was fun! We really got into it. And I love how it sets up the episode with such contrast, like you think things are great between these two best friends. They're having such a great time and are really close with each other but then obviously things don't turn out quite so well.