In early January, Fox debuted Pivoting, a suburban-set comedy about three friends who each reevaluate their pursuit of happiness after the fourth dear friend of their group dies. Alongside Elize Coupe, Ginnifer Goodwin and Maggie Q, Tommy Dewey stars as Henry, who weathers the storm while his wife (Coupe) goes on a journey of self discovery. We caught up with Dewey to learn more about Pivoting, the importance of finding humor in life and what it’s like to voice all-American dad Stu Pickles.
What can audiences look forward to from Pivoting?
It's a show that mines humor from some of life's tougher moments, and after a couple of years that have been pretty damn tough for a lot of people, I hope that audiences can see a little of themselves in it. Thanks to my incredibly talented coworkers— both in front of and behind the camera— Pivoting manages to be both laugh-out-loud funny and emotionally resonant.
Tell us more about Henry! How would you describe him?
Henry is a good family man with a dry, mischievous sense of humor. He thrives in chaos and finds joy in strange places. In our second episode, he devises a running challenge to spell out "Jets" (his favorite NFL team) on his GPS app. Later in the season, Henry is unafraid to take up a hobby, at which he's hopelessly terrible. I love that about him.
Henry seems like Amy’s rock as she goes on her journey of self discovery. What do you think audiences can learn from their relationship?
Henry and Amy both have an incredible ability to quickly forgive each other's nonsense, which saves them a lot of time and energy. If there's a lesson there, it might be that patience with one's partner makes it easier to see and enjoy their positive qualities. Henry and Amy's life might be pandemonium, but they have a hell of a lot of fun together.
The series unfolds around the death of a best friend. Death, especially when sudden, is pretty taboo in our culture. How does Pivoting serve as a way for audiences to expand their understanding of processing grief?
Pivoting reminds us that there's no rulebook for handling grief. It's okay to laugh in dark times. And if tragedy makes you a little nuts, that's OK, too. Give yourself a break.
Do you have a favorite episode or memory from being on set?
There are a couple of scenes between Henry and Amy that Eliza Coupe and I simply could not get through without breaking. I don't want to spoil too much, but I'm thinking of a scene of the two of them in bed, in which Amy gets turned on by something Henry tells her. We couldn't stop laughing. I'm not sure we ever completed that scene.
You play Stu Pickles on the Rugrats revival series, which is pretty iconic to ‘90s babies (and many others). How did it feel to join such a series so legendary in pop culture?
It's a huge honor to step into the role originated by the great Jack Riley. To avoid freaking myself out, I try not to think too much about the show's legendary status, but I feel incredibly lucky.
What’s been your favorite part about playing Stu? I imagine voiceover work is a totally different experience, especially for something as fun as Rugrats.
I get to take some big swings with Stu. He's more unhinged than anyone I've played in a live action show. And I really love that I can do the job in my pajamas from the closet in my guest room.
Photography by: Riker Brothers