There are endless reasons as to why so many people have fallen hard for FXX’s edgy new comedy, YOU’RE THE WORST. The brilliant writing, the raw and truthfulness to each character, and the hilariously awkward situations they get themselves into week after week. While Gretchen (Aya Cash) and Jimmy (Chris Geere) drive the show, Edgar brings something a little different to the table. From the very first episode it was quite clear that there was so much more to this adorably charming, selfless, breakfast cooking man, than just the fact that he suffers from PTSD. Borges’ Edgar brings so much light and hope to the show. Whether it’s making a fun-filled Sunday Funday for the gang or offering words of encouragement to Lindsay, he’s that guy you always want around. Slowly throughout the first season Edgar made Jimmy, Gretchen, and Lindsay (Kether Donohue) better people, just by being in their lives. He continues to make us laugh this season on the FXX hit! I caught up with Borges about his preparation for the role, his initial reaction to the script, Edgar and Lindsay’s strange chemistry, and what we can look forward to on tonight’s episode.
Your character, Edgar has PTSD. How did you channel that character? What kind of research did you do for that?
Desmin Borges: I did a lot of ground work trying to research PTSD online and I found out kind of rather quickly that a couple of my close friend’s dads had PTSD and I hadn’t known about it and I’ve known them for over eighteen years. Once I found that out I kind of started to think about the ways that they would act and the stories they would tell, and one of the things I focused mainly on was how being as someone who was close to them for eighteen years, I had no idea they suffered from PTSD. That was one of the things I definitely wanted to bring over to Edgar because when you’re dealing with anybody who is dealing with those certain issues you can’t tell just walking down the street. The things we wanted to focus on were that he was a hopeless romantic, extremely loyal, and ready to put anybody in a chokehold that screws with his friends. Within his PTSD we wanted to find the lows of it and we actually had a vet come in and talk to the writers. We spoke to him and he basically told his entire life story of going into the army, starting to deal with his issues, and coming back out, dealing with his issues, then going back in. I would say I probably got the most amount of help from him because some of the things he went into, you don’t ever read those types of stories on the internet so it was a great insight. One thing that he weighed in on a lot was that when you’re on the upwards trajectory of PTSD, which is where we find Edgar he’s in a pretty good place right now. They like to do things like normally people, go to the movies, hang out with their friends, watch football, go on dates, and play put-put golf and try to live their life as “normally as possibly” whatever that means. I also regimented my life, I wore the same types of clothes five days a week, I was getting up at the same time, I was working out at the same time, going to sleep at the same time. Just to kind of give myself that sort of structure that I would have had doing two tours in Iraq, in the Army.
Aside from reading about Edgar, what do you remember reading in the Pilot script that made you want to do this show?
I’ve worked with Stephen (Falk) previously on his show NEXT CALLER that we never quite made it to the air. But whenever I get a text or call from Stephen saying that he’s got something going on I’m always pretty quick to jump on, on any project that he is working on because I love the way he tells stories so damn much. I love the fact that even though Edgar is a “sidekick” you don’t ever stress the fact that he has to be the ethnic sidekick. He is ethnic, yes, but its not necessarily about that, we are telling this universal story through a very specific lens. With the character Edgar with PTSD we have to try and find how that dark comedy kind of strains through him. Very quickly, after the first couple of lines in the Pilot he had this moral compass about him and at the same time he had this great amount of hope.
I know Stephen recently spoke about how Lindsay and Edgar won’t ever be together. Would you like to see them together? Do you think that would be weird?
I think they would be interesting together. I think they’re a fun pair, they have really great chemistry. They both kind of give each other what they want and need in relationships, they unexpectedly find that in themselves, which I think is really interesting. But at the same time I know how tender Edgar is and how alcoholic-y Lindsay is and I think they should tread the waters lightly and if it turns out they are better just as friends, I have no problem with that as well.
If you could have your own Sunday Funday, what would you do?
Oh man! You know, it’s football season so I play a lot of fantasy football and I’m really big into the Chicago Bears. My Sunday Funday is kind of all around that, which is pretty amazing! I wake up super early, get some bloody Mary’s going. I make myself a delectable breakfast, maybe steak and eggs, then I go in and start making some wings or spice up some sweet potato. Usually have some friends with me, which is always nice and then after the first round of games I usually go out to brunch with my lady. Then I usually fall asleep on the couch after watching more football. That to me sounds like one hell of a day! If it wasn’t football season, I’d be sleeping in, taking a nice bath, eating a nice brunch, having some bloody Mary’s and then come back and sleep. I think that’s what Sunday’s are for, sleeping till the next day.
I like the cooking, that’s a lot like Edgar!
Thank you, I can’t remember if Stephen and I talked before the Edgar thing or if that kind of just came up incidentally, I can’t remember what came first the chicken or the egg.
What can you tell us about this week’s episode?
There’s a house vote that’s taken and Jimmy is finally on the losing end. That’s in favor of Gretchen having some friends over and having a party in the apartment, which Edgar views as another opportunity to continue to court Lindsay. Low and behold Mr. Paul (Allan McLeod) shows up and shit get’s cray!
You can watch Desmin in an all new episode of YOU’RE THE WORST tonight at 10:30PM on FXX.