Why Julia Davis loves to play the cringe-comedy villains that she creates
Julia Davis shares with Meaww that her characters echo the kind of people she's met in real life, who surprise her either by being pushy or by being selfish.
Julia Davis, not only creates a cringeworthy dark comedy, but she also plays the part in bringing the cringest character on TV alive. As of now, we have Emma, a sociopath, a pathological liar and Sally's girlfriend and forceful fiance in HBO's 'Sally4Ever.' In Davis' recent interview with HBO, the 52-year-old comedian affirmed that she likes playing "these sort of characters." Why? "There’s something so fun about it. In my real life, I worry about what people think of me, what I’m doing, am I doing the right thing? It’s a relief to play someone so selfish and so rude."
Those unfamiliar with Davis' humor, which is not just dark, but has a genre of its own are often baffled. She has regaled the audience with villainous characters such as Fay from the original UK version of the now re-made 'Camping,' as well as Dorothy, a malevolent housekeeper, in Sky Atlantic's 1830s drama 'Hunderby.' It is not just the selfish, narcissistic streak that's common in all of Davis' villains, it is also that fact that she herself plays the role that she creates. "I think narcissists are frequently very charming. There’s something about them that’s a bit exciting. I guess it’s their lack of predictability, as opposed to sort of really good people, who you know what they’re going to do in every situation," she tells in the same interview.
When Meaww interviewed Davis on the topic of dark villains that she creates and enacts for her shows, she told us that Jill Tyrell from one of the first dark comedies she penned in 2004, 'Nighty Night' can be considered the most outrageous one. Because besides being a narcissistic sociopath, Tyrell is "so unbelievably brash and brutal," wanting to seduce the husband of her multiple sclerosis suffering wheel-chair neighbor after discovering that her husband has cancer.
"Would it appeal to play someone nice? No, not really!" Davis told What's On TV, when talking about her role in 'Sally4Ever.' In a couple of interviews, she has also confessed that she is naturally good at playing bleak villainous roles but in reality, she's a completely different person. When in conversation with Meaww, soft-spoken Davis told us that even though she has never figured out where her dark comedy stems from, she believes she was just born with "that sort of take on life."
Davis writes the dark comedies with no intention of making anyone feel comfortable, she acts it out too with the same intention. She shares that sometimes she questions her own humor "is it really that dark? Oh my god! What was I thinking?" But in all her villains and comedies, there's adept silliness, which makes the fun characters even more fun.
As we head towards the end of 'Sally4Ever,' (there's still one episode to go), Davis' recent interview has put her character Emma in a different light as she reveals: "She’s probably a sociopath because I don’t think she’s that clever to be Machiavellian."