The White Lotus is full of hilariously unexpected jokes, but one of the funniest lines in Season 2 actually wasn’t in the script. Sabrina Impacciatore revealed that she improvised what is probably hotel manager Valentina’s most memorable comeback, and it will give everyone who’s been quoting her nonstop a whole new appreciation for the moment. Impacciatore confirmed Valentina’s “Peppa Pig” line in White Lotus Season 2 was improvised, and she was surprised it ended up making the final cut.
One of the second season’s funniest back-and-forths came in Episode 2 when Tanya McQuoid (Jennifer Coolidge) asked no-nonsense manager Valentina (Impacciatore) to take a photo of herself and her husband, Greg (John Gries), before their romantic Vespa ride. “Guess who I am,” Tanya cooed, modeling her chic all-pink outfit. Without missing a beat, Valentina shot back a brutal guess: “Peppa Pig?” No, Tanya was actually trying to serve the style of late Italian movie star Monica Vitti, but Valentina’s blunt insult quickly became a viral moment that had viewers in stitches.
Impacciatore actually didn’t even know her remark made it into the show until she was asked about it during an Access Hollywood interview. “It’s in the show? Oh, I’m happy about that,” she exclaimed.
The actor revealed she came up with the retort herself in the moment, and was nervous it may not make the edit after it caused the whole set to break out laughing. “[Showrunner] Mike [White] said, ‘Hey guys, you can improvise if you want in this scene.’ It was like my third day of shooting and I was so intimidated by Jennifer, because to me she is a goddess. She’s a genius,” Impacciatore recalled. “And me, I just wanted to lay down and worship her. So, I improvised and I said ‘Peppa Pig?’ And you know what happened? She could not stop laughing. Like, she exploded in this laughter. And me, I thought, ‘Oh my God, what’s going to happen?’ And John was laughing, like, everybody was laughing. Then they had to cut. I mean, we went on with the scene, but then I was wondering, ‘Are they going to put this in the scene?’ Because she didn’t know this Peppa Pig.”
Thankfully, the “Peppa Pig” comment survived the show’s final edits, but not all of Impacciatore’s scenes were so lucky. The actor previously revealed a couple of Valentina’s scenes were cut from the season, including one moment where the character revealed she used to be unhappily married to a man and another full-circle conversation in which Valentina admitted to Lucia and Mia that she respected their hustle.
Although a few Valentina details may have been lost in Season 2’s edit, at least Impacciatore’s masterful bit of cartoon pig-inspired improv made the cut.