The Never Have I Ever Cast Weighs In On Team Paxton Vs. Team Ben
Somehow they worked a Shrek reference into this interview.
Devi’s life is about to get more complicated on Never Have I Ever, and Maitreyi Ramakrishnan can’t wait for fans to see her character’s journey in Season 2. The actor isn’t shy about her love for the upcoming season. “In my honest opinion, I think Season 2 is better than Season 1, and I already know how awesome Season 1 was,” she tells Elite Daily. Ahead of the release date on July 15, she and her fellow Never Have I Ever cast members tease Season 2 details and weigh in on the big question that has fans split: Team Ben or Team Paxton?
The first season of Never Have I Ever ended with a ton of question marks. Devi had both grown closer to her longtime crush Paxton (Darren Barnet) and finally kissed her enemy-turned-friend and academic rival Ben (Jaren Lewison), leaving her with a big decision to make. And it’s only made messier by the news that she is about to move to India to be closer to her extended family. The Season 2 trailer teased that not only will Devi have to choose who she’ll be with, but also that there will be more drama in the form of a cool new girl, Aneesa (Megan Suri), as well as ups and downs with her besties Eleanor (Ramona Young) and Fabiola (Lee Rodriguez).
The cast is pumped for Season 2 to finally come out, and they dropped a few hints about what’s in store, including which character has a surprising kinship with Shrek.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Elite Daily: What was your initial reaction to finding out Never Have I Ever was renewed for Season 2?
Maitreyi Ramakrishnan: I think I might've been the last one to find out purely because I was sleeping in, and I woke up to a swarm of texts and a bunch of calls. So that was a big yikes, but [I was] super stoked. I was like, "Oh my God, we actually get to find out what happens to these characters and figure out like, where does everyone go?" So, super stoked and super thankful.
Darren Barnet: I think it was really great because you just really never know. There are shows you watch and you're like, "Oh, that's definitely getting a Season 2" and then somehow it just doesn't work out. But I think we all knew there was a lot more of a story to tell and we are thrilled to be able to tell it in Season 2.
Ramona Young: I was so worried that we might get shut down because of COVID. So I was nervous throughout the whole beginning.
Jaren Lewison: I got so impatient. My first question immediately was, "Oh, when are we starting?" And like, you don't always have that information immediately once you're renewed. I was ready to go. I just wanted to see everybody again.
Lee Rodriguez: For some reason, I already thought we had a second season, like after filming [Season 1]. I didn't know we had to wait for them to tell us we had a second season. I just felt like the show was so good that it just automatically had a second season. So it didn't dawn on me up until they actually told us, "You're renewed." I'm just like, "Oh, I already know, but thanks."
Megan Suri: That's called manifestation.
ED: Megan, what was it like to join for Season 2, and how did you bond with your co-stars who already knew each other pretty well?
MS: I definitely felt like Aneesa on so many levels, being the new kid on the block. But also implementing the COVID protocol safety rules. It's not the same as it would have been prior to COVID in the sense that we didn't get to bond the way that we probably would have been able to. However, everyone in this cast is so nice. I remember when my casting was revealed, Jaren DMed me and sent me his number and was like, "Hey, if you need anyone, I'm here for you." They all made me feel like I was already a part of their family. I couldn't have asked for a better cast to join.
ED: What’s one word you would use to describe Season 2?
MR: I’ll go with cool.
MS: A lot.
ED: What can fans expect from your characters in Season 2?
MR: It gets pretty great. We have seen these characters all of Season 1 and we got to know them, but now we get to really dive into them all with their own arcs and learn more about them. But also new characters, too. Like Megan, who's playing Aneesa; then we have Common as Dr. Jackson; we have Tyler Alvarez as Malcolm. There are so many new characters who I'm very excited about, who only make this story way more rich and interesting for a bunch of different audiences to see and relate to.
JL: All of these characters that you fell in love with, you're just going to keep falling harder and harder in love with them. As they go through different areas and situations, and how they handle things and the relationships they build, it just keeps on getting better and better.
DB: Paxton is like an ogre. It's like Shrek said, he's like an onion. There are layers. You have to pull them back. In Season 2, those layers start to be pulled back. And with the culmination of Season 2, just like an onion when you peel it, there are tears that are going to come.
MR: Damn. Shrek is amazing. Paxton is amazing. Top-tier stuff you can find in Season 2.
ED: Are you all Team Paxton or Team Ben?
MR: Easy. Team Devi. All the way.
JL: I’ve got to be Team Ben.
LR: Team Devi.
RY: Team Paxton.
DB: This question is a trap. So, Team Devi.
MS: I almost want to say Team Aneesa, bro, but no. Team Devi.
Never Have I Ever Season 2 premieres on Netflix on Thursday, July 15.
Reporting by Lexi Williams