'Mixed-ish' star Mark Paul Gosselaar say new show gets real about race originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.com
Tracee Ellis Ross and Mark Paul Gosselaar are ready for viewers to see the early beginnings of Ross' "black-ish" character Rainbow Johnson in the new spin-off, "mixed-ish," premiering Tuesday night on ABC.
The new series explores Rainbow's backstory and follows her journey growing up in a biracial household in the suburbs during the '80s. Ross tells ABC News she's excited for the series to pivot to Rainbow's life.
"On 'black-ish' we often get to flashback into Dre's childhood, but this is a show that is an opportunity for us to zoom back into a big flashback of where Bow comes from and who she is," Ross says. "So, in essence is what the show is."
Ross says while the new series will offer plenty of laughs, it will also provide a deeply relatable subject matter.
"It's the story of being a fish out of water. It's the experience that all of us have in many different ways," she said. "And for many different reasons, where we are the one that is not like everybody else for some reason. And what that experience creates for you as a person, and how the journey is usually that you get to become more yourself."
Of course, Ross will still get to play a part in the "mixed-ish" experience as the show's narrator, so she will be the one to tell Bow's story.
"We get to follow through the eyes of Bow, her family and her childhood through the backdrop of the binary eighties, where people were using language that we all now know is not appropriate," Ross says. "And being in that environment as she kind of walks her way through this coming off of the commune and into mainstream world."
Gosselaar and Tika Sumpter play Bow's parents on "mixed-ish." Gosselaar tells ABC News the show gets real about race.
"We need to work on some things and some things we need to work extra hard on," he explains, "It's a comedy and we don't hit you over the head with things, we kinda teach you a lesson and you don't even know it."
The series begin with Bow's parents raising their family on a commune, where the children grow up oblivious that the outside world deems them neither white or black. In fact, Bow and her siblings start off the series not knowing they're different.
Gosselaar gushed about how much he loved pretending to live on a commune and, especially, enjoyed the wardrobe.
"[The clothes] are comfortable, they are comfortable," he says. "I get more compliments for those type of clothes than any other character I've ever played. I've played well dressed lawyers, I get more compliments for these clothes."
"mixed-ish" premieres Tuesday night on ABC at 9 p.m. ET.