A.K.A. Josh's Breath Seriously Reeks!

By Shirley Li
Updated March 07, 2016 at 10:11 PM EST
Danny Feld/The CW

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

  • TV Show

In real life, the long-awaited kiss between Rebecca (Rachel Bloom) and Josh Chan (Vincent Rodriguez III) wasn’t even close to romantic — not because they were actors filming a pivotal scene, but because of … garlic.

According to Rodriguez, Bloom had been sick, so he sought the advice of actor Pete Gardner (who plays Rebecca’s boss Darryl) and was told that, to ward off illness, all he had to do was eat raw garlic on buttered toast for at least two days before the shoot. And so, like an episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, hijinks ensued: Rodriguez, who can’t eat gluten or dairy, gathered the ingredients and stuffed himself with enough garlic to become a walking vampire repellent. But by the time he had to film, Bloom could barely approach him.

“We’re rehearsing, and Rachel’s like, ‘Okay, stop. Vinny, I’m sorry, but you reek,’ ” Rodriguez remembers, laughing. “So I’m mouthwashing and feeling so insecure because of the intimate scene … Then we get to it again, and I’m saying my lines, and she’s like, ‘Wait a minute, when you breathe out of your nose, that’s what I’m smelling!’ And I went, ‘Oh my God, there’s no nose wash!’ I’m not putting Listerine in my nose!”

“So the garlic’s stuck up there, and she’s smelling it,” he continues, “and I’m trying not to breathe out of my nose during the scene and trying only to breathe through my mouth. And we full-on made out, I don’t know, eight or 10 times! … I imagine on her part, she got used to it, but I was rinsing my mouth through every take.”

Luckily, Rodriguez says, he didn’t get sick, and even better, the kiss wound up easier to film than he thought. “It was really the garlic that took all the focus, so the kiss didn’t feel awkward at all,” he admits. “It was a relief.”

Greg Gayne/The CW

Of course, Josh and Rebecca’s kiss wasn’t the only jaw-dropping, squee-worthy moment of last week’s episode, which was originally the season finale before The CW ordered more scripts. Darryl and White Josh (David Hull) made strides as well, agreeing to not keep their budding relationship a secret. Gardner says filming Darryl and White Josh’s first kiss a few episodes earlier didn’t involve garlic, but did draw Bloom onto the set. “When we did that kiss, Rachel came by from her office and wanted to watch,” Gardner recalls. “She walked up afterward and had tears in her eyes. She was like, ‘Oh my God, I loved that!’ “

So what’s next post-kisses for both couples? For Darryl and White Josh, “There’s still that awkwardness,” Gardner says. “I think Darryl honestly wants to go 75 miles an hour, and I think White Josh is the normal person who’s like, ‘Hold on! We’ve kissed twice!’ … [Darryl] just can’t believe this guy likes him. I think it’s adorable!”

Meanwhile, non-white Josh will face a difficult internal struggle that won’t be easily solved — musically or otherwise. “Rebecca’s like this pebble from New York that got thrown into the West Covina pond, and it ripples, and she affects all of us,” Rodriguez explains. “I think the question [for Josh] is, ‘I just did this, so did I just ruin 15 years of my relationship with my girlfriend? Do I tell her, or do I not tell her?’ ” Whatever happens, just don’t eat too much garlic beforehand.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.

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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

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