In predictably unpredictable fashion, season 2 of Please Like Me wrapped with drunken skinny dipping, a disastrous balloon ride, and Josh (Josh Thomas) once again falling asleep with a mentally unstable loved one.
As for his same-named hero’s sleeping arrangements, Thomas laughed as he told EW, “I don’t think that’ll happen next year. I don’t think we want to get into a situation where, at the end of each season, it’s like, ‘Who’s Josh going to get into bed with?'” That said, PLM‘s creator and star isn’t ruling out the possibility that “maybe next year it’ll just be [my dog] John. That’s actually such a cute idea.”
What will go down in season 3 is still in question since Thomas only recently handed in the premiere script, but he can dissect the intricacies of this past season: Where do Josh and Arnold (Keegan Joyce) stand? What does the return of Patrick (Charles Cottier) mean? How did poor Tom (Thomas Ward) get so lonely? And what about that unexpected kiss?
About that panic attack…
“We’re not scared of uncomfortable scenes. [laughs] That’s the reality—that’s what Josh is getting himself into, and we wanted to drive that home throughout the [season]. Arnold’s main issue is an anxiety disorder, and people with anxiety disorders usually seem sort of fine. They’re really good at hiding their anxieties. One of the things about anxiety is, it actually forces you to work really hard, so some people put a lot of effort in and come across really well put-together. We haven’t really seen Arnold’s illness very much in this [season], and in episode 10 we wanted to drive it home.”
So what will happen with Josh and Arnold?
“They like each other. [The issue is] how they make that work, if they make that work. … Josh has practice at it—he’s got game when it comes to dealing with mental illness. That’s the whole thing—trying to watch them navigate that. I actually don’t know how good Josh is going to be for Arnold. [laughs] I would be nervous if it was my life. I’ve never dated somebody that was that fragile. If I was actually going into that situation, I’d be really nervous about how to behave.”
Is there any hope for Josh and Patrick’s shippers?
“There definitely are people on the Internet that are Team Patrick. Josh certainly isn’t. I think Josh has moved on. I think Patrick has moved on as well. We’ve seen him before where, in the moment, he thinks he’s in love and then realizes he’s completely not. I’ve been guilty of that before.”
Does that mean Charles Cottier’s out for good?
“Josh the character’s certainly done with him, but I [don’t know if we’ll ever] be done with him because he’s pretty.”
Did Tom bring everything on himself?
“At the beginning of the season, he was such a douchebag. He was a bad dude. He’s just bad with girls. He’s cheated on Niamh (Nikita Leigh-Pritchard) a few times. She’s a person even though she’s not that likeable; she’s got feelings. I felt like it would be nice to see the girls turn against him, which we did in quite spectacular fashion, I think. He’s left, hopefully, in a place where he’s questioning how he treats girls. [But] I don’t think Tom’s going to improve. [laughs] I think he’s plateaued.”
But don’t pin that final, awkward shot of Tom on Thomas!
“Tom [Ward] writes a lot of his character. People always blame me. He’s much more masochistic about his storylines than I am.”
What about that kiss between Mum and Hannah (Hannah Gadsby)?
“Hannah has this thing in her character where she makes fairly impulsive choices, like joining a choir. They’re just roommates now. Mum just has a roommate, and hopefully it will take some of the burden off Josh.”
What would you like to explore more in season 3?
“Josh and Dad’s (David Roberts) relationship—we spent so much of season 2 dealing with Josh and Mum. I think Josh and Dad probably have some stuff to talk about.”
Why was this season darker than season 1?
“A show about upper middle class people dealing with mental illness, set now, probably needs to have a lot of characters that are surrounded by people that feel quite lonely. … I think I just got a bit more confident with the drama. I’d only ever done stand-up comedy before season 1. With season 2, I’d done season 1, so I understood the drama part of the writing a bit better.”
Most importantly, what has your dog John been doing during the hiatus?
“[He’s] getting worse-behaved…. He’s just napping. He likes my boyfriends a lot more than me, and it’s a real issue at the moment. I brought him up—I’ve had John since he was a baby—so I know that it’s going to be fine. I know that my boyfriend and John will never have that bond that me and John have, but he just seems a lot happier to see him than he is to see me. … I’ve been working on it. I’ve been giving him lots of snacks.”