Move over Joey Potter, there’s a new tomboy at the center of a tortured teen love triangle on television, and her name is Jo Masteron.
Fans of ABC Family’s new hit series, Twisted, know Jo (Madelaine Hasson) as the hapless teenage girl in love with her former best friend Danny (Avan Jogia) — who just so happens to be hooking up with their mutual friend Lacey (Kylie Bunbury) — and unknowingly ignoring the affections of her geeky BFF Rico. But if you thought that love square was complicated, just wait until Tyler (Chris Zylka) comes into the picture on Episode 7, “We Need to Talk About Danny.” He’s about to rock Jo’s world completely, and like another good-looking enigmatic teen we know (ahem, Danny), we’re not sure whether or not we can trust him.
Wetpaint Entertainment chatted with Madelaine Hasson about Jo’s complicated love life, her impending style transformation, and Tyler’s motives. Plus, what happens between Lacey and Danny that drives Jo into Tyler’s arms?
Wetpaint Entertainment: So let’s talk about the relationship between Rico and Jo. He’s super uncomfortable with her friendship with Danny. Plus, he witnessed Karen throwing the necklace off the pier. Are things going to be different for Jo and Rico now?
Madelaine Hasson: It definitely changes, and Jo is really oblivious to it because apparently, she can’t see the obvious signs that someone likes her. But things definitely change between them, and it’s unclear whether it changes because she realizes his feelings for her on the last episode [of the season]. The season ends with Jo, in her love life, battling between three guys in three different types of relationships.
Whoa! Three? Who’s the third potential love interest for Jo?
Chris Zylka, who plays Tyler. He comes in Episode 7 [“We Need to Talk About Danny”]. He’s amazing to work with. I’m so lucky! They’re all so talented to work with — Ashton is like this surfer boy who talks incredibly fast and says “like” a lot, and he’s so energetic that you won’t know, until you listen really closely to what he’s saying, that it’s probably the smartest thing you’ve ever heard.
So what can you tell me about Tyler? How does he fit into Jo’s love life?
He’s this generation’s version of a jock. In this generation the classic jock has been changed into a more creative, cool hipster type. So the cool guy is now the guy that does art and has a lot of passion for things, so that’s Tyler. He’s head of the film club — he’s still kind of a d-bag — and kind of pretentious. It’s unclear whether or not he’s pursuing Jo for the wrong reasons or the right reasons. Chris balances that really well.
Obviously, by the the end of the first half of this season, Jo is going to have three guys complicating her love life, but she very clearly has feelings for Danny. Does she love Danny as more than a friend?
I think she’s confused because when Danny left, he was her best friend, and they knew each other before Lacey knew them. It was always her and Danny, and then Lacey came in, so when he left, it was like this huge pull for her. But when he came back, I think she didn’t realize how much she missed having that companionship, so those feelings came rushing back. Then the dynamic started changing because they’re older, and they’re trying to find their footing in their new relationship. She doesn’t know if she wants it to be romantic or not, and I think she’s also experiencing her first crush, which is always really confusing. She’s very naive.
Such a scandalous crush! Green Grove’s most wanted...
Jo doesn’t go halfway on anything! She’s fearless in that sense, but at the same time, she’s very sensitive, so when it comes crashing down around her, she feels it. Teenage angst is high with Jo — it’s so high!
What about the relationship between Jo and Lacey? How will that dynamic change?
It’s going to be rocky. They were forced to work together, and opened up about middle school and what happened after Danny left.
The show is disarmingly funny for a series about a potential teen murderer.
It really is! Avan [Jogia], Kylie [Bunbury], and Ashton [Moio], who plays Rico — he is hilarious, by the way, and so similiar to his character — get the best lines. And it’s just so natural for them to be charismatic and funny. It gets funnier too!
Phoebe is my favorite. She kills me on a weekly basis.
Oh my god. Brittany Curran is the craziest, funniest person you will ever meet. She is borderline psychotic, and I am in love with her. She is amazing. I can’t wait until she gets more incorporated into the show. There’s this one scene — which unfortunately got cut — at Lacey’s sleepover where Phoebe is biting into a cupcake, and she comes up to me and say, “Did you just call Lacey’s mom a slut?” But on that line, she’s holding a cupcake and taking bites out of this cupcake in the most psychotic, crazy way! They cut out the bite, and I’m so sad! I couldn’t look at her!
The running joke throughout the show so far is Jo’s hair. There’s always one comment in every episode, which I really appreciate.
It’s so sad! But not as sad as the mom jeans I have to wear — I think if we get to film the second half of the season, I won’t have to wear those anymore, which I’m really glad for because they are not flattering!
Is Jo getting a makeover?
Yeah! She transforms a little bit. The last episode is a really big turning point for Jo. And that yellow sweater, also, needs to go. It’s not cold in LA! It’s never, ever cold there, and when we come to shoot on the East Coast for exteriors, it’s pretty hot. It’s never cold when we’re shooting for winter.
So it sounds like Jo is going to have a lot of growth in the first half of the season.
When I came on for the pilot, they told me they had this whole transformation planned, which is really cool for me because I never played a character who had that much of a plan to begin with. They really have a strict plan of where she’s going to go, and how she’s going to transform and what’s going to happen — so much so that wardrobe is kind of hell to go to because they really want me in sweaters and baggy jeans and boots. I’m always asking, “When can I start wearing fitted clothing?” It’s Episode 7, and she’s going on a date! She needs to look presentable!
At the heart of the show is Danny and whether or not he’s telling the truth about his aunt’s murder. Are we going to have more reveals? Does he know more than he’s telling Jo and Lacey?
Yes. There’s a reveal in every episode, but in Episode 7, Phoebe’s brother Tyler, played by Chris, comes in, and he shows a mysterious interest in Danny and Jo. So he invites them to a party in a cemetery. I felt so bad shooting there — morally, in my soul, it kind of hurts. I was like, “Where do I step? I don’t know!” It was really cool, really creepy at first, but cool. But at the party, Lacey and Jo confront Danny, and they’re like, “Look, you’ve been keeping secrets from us since day one. You won’t tell us why you murdered your aunt. Will you give us something?” And he’s such a good charmer and con artist that he actually flips it on us, and we end up telling him a secret of ours!
It’s that charm! Is Jo ever going to find out about Danny and Lacey’s kiss because I don’t think his charm is going to get him out of that one...
She finds out about something else that happens between them. She finds out in a really messed up way. If I found out that my best friend and the boy that I’ve been crushing on... if I found out in this way, I’d freak.
But Chris Zylka isn’t the worst rebound a girl could have!
When that happens, it pushes her toward Tyler — a lot. There already is friction between Danny and Tyler in the beginning episodes, but after she finds that out, in the last episode of the first half of the season, she goes to Tyler and makes a really daring move. All cards are on the table. She’s a whole new woman. It’s crazy what she does!
Catch the next episode of Twisted on Tuesday, July 23, at 9 p.m. EST on ABC Family.