She’s only 12.
“But I think it’s a really funny show anyway,” she says.
The road-trip comedy — from executive producers Samantha Bee and Jason Jones — follows a family from upstate New York as they encounter an unbelievable string of comic setbacks and cooky characters while driving to a vacation in Ft. Lauderdale.
Ashley is the comedy’s breakout star, stealing almost ever scene she appears in.
The sixth grader, who attends public school in New York City, plays smart-mouthed tween, Delilah Parker.
“You are so quick to give up on pushing,” she reprimands her mother in one episode. “I guess that is why we weren’t born vaginally!”
Ashley is no stranger to adult language or innuendo. She previously played Louis C.K.’s youngest daughter on the FX comedy, LOUIE.
But when it was time to film a scene where her TV parents give the “sex talk” to Delilah and brother, Jared (Liam Carroll), Ashley’s real-life mom and dad were forced to do some quick explaining of their own.
“My mom and I did have short and deep talks,” she remembers. “They’re glad it’s done, but sooner than they expected.”
Ashley opens up more about herself and her show in an exclusive interview with TheTVPage.com:
Have you ever taken a family road trip?
Yes, I actually have with my dad and my sister. We drove from New York to South Carolina. On the way down we listened to the musical CATS the whole time. I mean…seriously! We were obsessed with it for the next few months.
Did anything crazy happen?
We went to Savannah, Georgia for my dad’s birthday and we ate lunch at this restaurant. Later on we took this ghost tour and it stopped by [the same] restaurant. And we were like, “Why are we at the restaurant?” And they told us it was haunted in the basement. We were like, “What?? We ate at a haunted restaurant! Cool!”
How do you describe Delilah?
She is sarcastic and sassy and very smart. And she loves her family and her brother and tries to protect him.
Is she at all like you?
I would describe myself as also sarcastic and obnoxious at times. And I am also pretty smart, if I do say so myself. She is more of a “Too cool for school” kind of kid. It was one of the easier roles for me to slip into.
Your two sisters (Alexa and Erin) also act. What is it like to have all this talent in your family?
It is not that big of a deal, except if we are competing for the same role.
Did one of your sisters compete against you for this role?
My older sister actually went to the first audition with me. But I was the only one that got called back.
How did you all end up in show business?
I have to give a lot of credit to my mom. We were all babies.
How is Middle School going?
Middle school is great actually. I am learning science. I am learning math. I am learning social studies. I am learning health. It is a lot of stuff to cram in my head, but it is actually pretty cool because I like cramming stuff in my head.
A lot of kids are nervous for middle school.
I actually was a little nervous the entire summer because I was transitioning from one room to nine rooms. I was like “What if I get lost.” Then I realized the school wasn’t that big.
Your classmates must know what you do. Does that make it harder for you to blend in?
I try to keep it normal. When people ask me about it, of course, I answer them. But if they want me to say a line from a scene I am like, “I don’t think I can do that.” I will just start talking about CATS and boys and other stuff.
Are you a big musical theater fan?
Yes! I just saw Wicked on Broadway. It was really awesome.
Can you sing? Could you be in a musical?
I have never really done stuff like that except in my school play. I was Veruca in Willy Wonka. I do enjoy singing along to my favorite songs in the car. Playing piano…
Any other hidden talents?
I do Tae Kwon Do. I am a purple belt with a stripe. Nobody really messes with me. [laughs]
What about sports?
I enjoy swimming, but that is about it. I am not a sports girl, really. I like to draw. I like the arts more than sports.
Can you cook?
I can scramble an egg and toast bagels, but that is about it. I love to watch cooking shows.
Do you watch reality TV?
I watch SURVIVOR and HELLS KITCHEN. I will watch reality shows if they are not too dramatic or filled with tears.
Would you ever want to compete on a reality show?
I think it would be really cool if they made a SURVIVOR JUNIOR. I would love to do that. What could possibly go wrong?
What makes you think you would be good at that?
I try to be friendly so I think I could make a lot of alliances and I am pretty smart so if they had a puzzle challenge I would do well at that. And I am pretty strong, so I could lift up a chunk of wood to help build a shelter.
If I asked your teachers about you, what would they say?
I am not sure what they think of me, but I am pretty sure they would say, “Ashley is pretty good. She is smart. She is funny. She likes to learn” That is what it says on my report card, at least.
Is there a subject that give you trouble?
I don’t appreciate what math does to my brain sometimes.
Is acting the long term goal for you or do you have other plans?
I definitely do want to keep acting, but since acting is an on and off sort of thing, I would also like to be a chemist. Have a steady flow of money instead of a big wave and then nothing.
Are you a morning person or night person?
I am a morning person.
Team Kanye or Team Taylor?
Taylor Swift! I am a big fan. I like her songs.
If you found $100 on the sidewalk, what do you do with it?
I’d save it and then I would go buy something that my mom and dad would never let me buy if they were paying for it. Such as a giant 10,000 Facts Book. I like random facts.
Can you share a random fact?
Salt dissolves in water because when chlorine and sodium bond, chlorine gets an electron from the sodium, so that makes the sodium slightly positive and the chlorine slightly negative. When you pour it in water, the positive gets attracted to some molecules and the negative gets attracted to some molecules, and since they have a particularly weak bond, they separate. And that is why salt dissolves in water.
Why is there so much salt in the ocean then?
That is a good question. I will look that up.
Tell us three fun facts about yourself.
My favorite color is blue. My favorite animal is a horse. My favorite food is a big bowl of delicious, creamy mac and cheese.
What is the worst rule your parents have for you?
That they have to send me to school.
You don’t have a chore or an unreasonable bed time?
Sometimes they send us to bed at 9:30 PM. Sometimes at 11:30 PM. It depends on what mood they are in.
Do you have a favorite aisle in the grocery store?
The candy aisle.
Who is your celebrity crush?
I am not really into boys so I don’t have a celebrity crush. But I do share a birthday with Harry Styles and my mom thinks that is so cool.
Are you a One Direction fan?
A little bit. I did like their song “Story of My Life”
THE DETOUR debuts April 11 on TBS.
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