‘Carrie Diaries’ Season 1 Spoilers – Brendan Dooling on Walt / Bennet
As Carrie’s notebooks sign for season Monday (The CW, 8 / 7c) – The titular writer’s secretly gay boyfriend, Walt, will find himself shoved out of the closet.
With everything out in the open, will Walt be encouraged to take his friendship with Bennet to the next level?
Below, Brendan Dooling talks about her character’s feelings for her boyfriend, the explosion with Maggie and how Gender and city comes into play in the final.
TVLINE | Walt’s screenplay really stood out, both because of your performance and the thoughtful writing. What response did you get?
From the people I meet in person, from family and friends to fans on Twitter, everyone really, really loves Walt’s storyline, how the arc progressed and how he’s not a typical gay character in the prime-time television. The response has been truly heartwarming. It’s not just silly stuff like, “Oh my God, Walt is so hot.” It’s like, “Oh my God, Walt’s story, I’m actually connecting with it.” And that’s really cool. I won’t say it’s surprising because, obviously, I had hoped for something like this. But as far as I got [feedback] the whole season I couldn’t expect it.
TVLINE | There is clearly a lot of care to be taken.
Yes. [Executive producer] Amy Harris always said from the start that she felt close and dear to Walt. And me too. It’s kind of normal for me to play this role, because I grew up with friends in the same position. Now I try to make them proud.
TVLINE | What’s next for Walt on this journey of self-discovery in the finale?
He finally asserts himself. He puts his foot down and says, “Alright, I’m controlling that.” I think everyone will be happy to see this. I definitely was when I first read the script. There’s a bit of a leap of faith for him in the season finale because things aren’t quite going as planned or as planned. He therefore needs to improvise. He stands over there on the chopping block, which is very courageous.
TVLINE | He’s been lucky so far in that people he’s opened up to like Carrie and Donna have responded well and accepted him. But how does Maggie deal with all of this?
The last two years they’ve been together, as far as she knows, they’ve just been a big lie. So she takes it to heart. She obviously feels a sense of betrayal, which is understandable. It’s not like Walt is actively hiding something from her. It was just the development of his sexuality, and that, unfortunately, amounted to hurting someone, which of course he never wanted. But these are the breaks, I guess. It’s life. I hate using these shots, but that’s how it worked. But you can’t really blame Maggie for her gut reaction.
TVLINE | I imagine his family won’t be so understanding either. Has Amy hinted at you that this is something they’ll explore if there’s a season 2?
No clues yet. But obviously in the books Walt lives in a tent in his backyard because his father doesn’t want him in the house. I don’t know where Amy and the writers are going to take it, because I don’t know what the setting would be for a start of season 2. I don’t know if that would be just the city or if it would include Castlebury. I’m sure Walt does do not want it to include Castlebury. But [there will] absolutely [be] more adversity.
TVLINE | Now that he’s revealing his true personality to people, what does that mean for his relationship with Bennet?
It certainly strengthens the relationship. It’s hard for me to answer that question because I think the season finale does such a good job.
TVLINE | Do you think Walt really likes Bennet? Or is it because he’s the first guy who accepted it and saw it for who he is?
What I’ve been saying from the start is that, as attractive as Bennet is, he’s also the first person Walt has experienced who is entirely himself, and people love him for that. It has to do with the environment he is in and, of course, the type of person he is. But [Walt has] never seen before. So it is also the novelty of Bennet that attracts Walt. It’s all this atmosphere that Bennet surrounds himself. And of course, he’s a very supportive and compassionate guy, so who wouldn’t love him?
TVLINE | How the world of Gender and city enter the final?
It is quite progressive. It’s just the implication that Gender and city exist. It’s a really good way to end the first season, to let people know that there is a connection there. You can only hope this results in the Gender and city the fans are crazy enough that they want a second season because everyone will be like, “Oh my God, that is Sex and the City! It’s crazy! I want to see young Carrie and young Samantha and young Charlotte.