Yvette Monreal (Rambo 5: Last Blood, Matador) is co-starring in WB/ DC Comics hit series Stargirl, with the second season premiering this week. Monreal plays Stargirl's best friend Yolanda Montez, heir to the mantle of Wildcat. Unlike original Wildcat Ted Grant, Yolanda has meta-human powers including retractable claws and heightened agility. Recently, Yvette took time to chat with Bleeding Cool's Jimmy Leszczynski about what she thinks of the new characters, how she is dealing with the death of Brainwave, and what she wants fans to know about Montez's Wildcat.
What has happened since the end of last season? Yolanda's boyfriend died and she killed Brainwave. How is she dealing with that at the beginning of the season?
Yvette Monreal: We pick up six months after we defeated the ISA (The Injustice Society of America). We've been patrolling Blue Valley. We're looking for the latest villain and we can't seem to find anything. We tell Courtney (Brec Bassinger) -Hey this is kind of a waste of time. But low and behold there's Eclipso (Nick Tarabay) lurking around, and then we see The Shade (Jonathan Cake), they're not all gone as much as we thought they were. Eclipso- he's this powerful entity and he feeds off human fears and your deepest insecurities. So once he gets thru to certain people on the show, the cast, once he gets thru their insecurities, he's able to have a lot of control. That's going to be fun to watch.
At the end of the first season, Wildcat kills Brainwave and then jumps right back into the action, saving Stargirl at the very end. Yolanda doesn't seem to be affected as much, whereas by the beginning of Season Two she is clearly wracked with guilt, visiting her church to deal with her guilt. Would you say your character was in shock at that moment, or taking it in and trying to decide how she felt about it?
YM: I think it was like a shock factor. I think it was a lot of her trying to hide from the rest of her team how she's feeling. Yeah, she was trying to conceal it as much as possible but you'll see in Season Two that it's a lot for her. She's really dealing with the death of Henry and the death of Brainwave. The fact that she actually did kill someone and a lot of what she goes through is trying to justify if killing is ok. Faith is really important to her and the show, this time around leans heavily on religion and what that means to her. … she doesn't want to make it look like it's affecting her because this is her new family. She goes to the priest and she tries to find some comfort in that, but it's harder than she actually thought.
There are a few new characters coming to "Stargirl" Season Two. Can we get your comments on some of them? Jennie (Ysa Penarejo) – do you believe she is who she says she is?
YM: I think there is a little scepticism, you know? she kind of comes in there out of nowhere. I don't know how much I can say but there is scepticism and we're all kind of wondering if we should trust who she really says she is, because we have been lied to in the past. She claims that she is the daughter of Green Lantern (Alan Scott) eventually the team does welcome her in but Courtney's guard is completely up. I think that where the doubt is, that's where the catalyst is. Courtney's just on guard. This is her team. She is very protective.
And then there's The Shade…
YM: The Shade, oh my god, Jonathan Cake. He's so fun, he's so great. He is a member of the ISA and he arrives in Blue Valley in the second episode. He is in search of something -we don't know what yet, he doesn't really want to tell us. It's like, do we trust this guy? Is he on our team or is he not? We know that he is very powerful. We know that Pat knows him but the thing that sparks our concern is that Pat is really worried when he comes to town so we are just like 'What's going on?' There's all these secrets that aren't revealed off the bat and it's not until the season comes along and you uncover all of the secrets.
You mentioned Eclipso. With the darkness you are harboring- death of boyfriend and Brainwave- your interactions will hold a lot of weight. Will you be a target for Eclipso, will she be on his radar?
YM: Oh yeah, I think everyone is a target for Eclipso. Eclipso is the Big Bad Wolf. He preys on everyone who has insecurities. If you're scared it's an easy way in for him- I don't know how much I am allowed to say about him. But he definitely is the big bad villain that we need to try and get rid of in Blue Valley. I don't know if you've seen in the comics but you can't kill Eclipso. So pray for us, pray for me and Beth (Anjelika Washington).
Shining Knight- does he make a return this season?
YM: The Shining Knight! Oh, we love him. He might make a return, I don't know if I'm allowed to say that or not but, I will say maybe for now.
What is your favorite subplot setup so far? Artemis Crock, Issac Bowin, the weird old couple that speaks a weird language? What about Joel McHale's Sylvester Pemberton/Starman, will he have a big presence this season?
YM: I really do love Artemis Crock (Stella Smith). I feel like she has such a cool arc, and Issac Bowin (Max Franz), the principal's son. He has a really really cool arc this season too. He surprised me. He is so good. We have some back and forth encounters. I would say watch out for that Issac Bowin. He's a fun one. Joel McHale too, we love Joel McHale.
We start this season by asking the question, and maybe you can answer it now. Does Yolonda deserve to be Wildcat?
YM: I think so. Yes, of course she does. I think Wildcat was made for her, and there's a reason why Courtney decided to rally her up. I mean, Courtney saw something in her (Yolanda) that she didn't see in herself. She really needed it. Wildcat gives her this undeniable strength that she doesn't really feel when she is herself. But you'll see when the season goes along she comes to realize wow. It's all one. I am Wildcat, Wildcat is me. It's all one.
What do you want fans to know about Wildcat?
YM: I want fans to know that things aren't always as bad as they seem, to face your fears straight on because you can only run from them for so long. It's better to just go head-on. Get it over with, rip the band-aid off… The truth always comes to light .
DC's Stargirl stars Brec Bassinger as Courtney Whitmore / Stargirl, Yvette Monreal as Yolanda Montez / Wildcat, Anjelika Washington as Beth Chapel / Dr. Mid-Nite, Cameron Gellman as Rick Tyler / Hourman, Trae Romano as Mike Dugan, Hunter Sansone as Cameron Mahkent, Meg DeLacy as Cindy Burman / Shiv, and Nick Tarabay as Eclipso- with Amy Smart as Barbara Whitmore, Luke Wilson as Pat Dugan, Jonathan Cake as The Shade, Alkoya Brunson as Jakeem Thunder, Ysa Penarejo as Jade, and Jim Gaffigan as the voice of Thunderbolt. Executive produced by Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti, and Sarah Schechter, The CW's DC's Stargirl is produced by Berlanti Productions and Mad Ghost Productions in association with Warner Bros TV.
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