It doesn’t matter what the weather looks like this weekend, at some point, we’ll be spending time on our couch, binge-watching season three of GLOW, which just hit Netflix on Aug. 9. There are a handful of reasons to love this show — strong female leads, thoughtful, interesting storylines, elaborate ‘80s trends, etc. — but at the top of that list is Britney Young. The actress plays Carmen (AKA Machu Picchu), a young woman who comes from an unsupportive family of wrestlers and, essentially, is struggling to find her place in this world. She’s the sweet friend you can’t help but root for, and that’s the same kind of vibe we got from Young herself during our interview.
“Carmen has had a very interesting ride this year,” she tells us via phone, reminding us that the group was on the way to Las Vegas when we saw them last. “She lost her roommate and her best friend — two of her best friends — with Rhonda and Bash [who spontaneously got married at the end of season two]. So at the beginning of the season, she's quite lonely, and she kind of feels like the way to patch up that lonely spot is to really lean into the Vegas lifestyle. She wants to go out and she's staying up late. She's really trying to figure out what’s going to make her happy.”
However, like most people who go through a somewhat-wild phase, it all ends up being part of the character’s journey.
“As the season goes on, we realize what makes Carmen happy is the wrestling part, and she's not leaning into that as much as she should. She has to ask herself, ‘What do I want out of this life? What are my dreams and how do I want to fit in with this GLOW group?’ I think people are going to be excited and happy about where she ends up. And if not…my bad!”
Young also reveals that things will get pretty dark in the next few episodes.
“It's way darker than any of the seasons we've had,” she admits. “But it's also so funny. It has so many great, heartfelt, touching moments that I think people will react strongly to and connect to. We have a lot of funny gags. And Geena Davis is there.”
Aside from an iconic actress joining the cast, another highlight for Young (and the rest of us) is the outfits. This season still has its fair share of puff sleeves and sparkle and, while Carmen typically wears T-shirts and sweatpants, Young asked the show’s costume designer, Beth Morgan, to put her in more leotards.
“I wear leotards so many times this season that I'm like, ‘Beth, I changed my mind, let's go back!’” she jokes.
Unfortunately, her favorite costume of the season is one that she wishes had more screen time.
“We have a scene where we're all stuck in an elevator going up to this party, and the costume department made me this amazing red dress. It has shoulder pads and ruching on it — it's so gorgeous — and, literally, it's going to be in the episode for like, two seconds. We tried to figure out a way to bring it back, because we don't really see Carmen all dressed up and glam with high heels and jewelry. But unfortunately, it was a one-and-done appearance.”
If it seems like Young is very into fashion, that’s because she is. She's has popped up on the red carpet wearing everything from sexy suits to Christian Siriano gowns, but admits it was only after she started working with her stylist, Christina Pacelli, that she began to enjoy getting dressed.
“I've always been a plus-sized girl and I've known nothing different,” Young tells us. “It's so frustrating to try to find not only clothes that fit you, but clothes that are fashionable and age-appropriate that you want to wear. For some reason, the fashion industry thinks that all plus-sized women are older and want glitz and glamour, and fringe and frill. And that's not what we all want, you know? So I just bought the same jeans and the same shirts over and over again because I knew they fit.”
Pacelli was the one who showed Young that she can actually pull off a variety of different styles, colors, and prints, and even introduced her to new brands.
Young is also happy to see more stores and brands expanding their sizing.
“A lot more brands are starting to really make clothes for plus-sized women. It's oddly — just to put it point-blank — a cash cow that fashion hasn’t tapped yet. There are so many women out here who want good clothing, and the fact that you're not even making it? It’s just mind-boggling.”
The conversation soon drifts from fashion to talking about the cast — “We hang out quite a bit outside of work,” she confirms — and then back to season three. That's when Young tells us that she still hasn’t seen the final result, despite having the episodes for weeks.
“I'm just such a huge film and TV nerd, that part of the experience for me is that countdown,” she admits, adding that she, too, will be binging this weekend. “As much as I hate it, I love it, because I'm just like, ‘Yes, Aug. 9! I know exactly what I'm doing.’ Come midnight, I'm going to check to see if the episodes are there. Then, I'm going to go to sleep, wake up, and watch it. For me, the fun is that there are scenes that I wasn't there for. I might know what happened, but I don't know what it looks like, how it was shot, how it's acted, directed, and all of that stuff. So, I'm excited. I know it's a good season — all the girls [from the cast] have told me so."