‘Hot Ones’: Quinta Brunson Says Her ‘Abbott Elementary’ Season 1 Wardrobe and Hair ‘Looks Bad on Purpose’ | Video

“It’s a way for us to show her brain on the outside of her head,” the creator and star tells host Sean Evans

“Abbott Elementary” creator and star Quinta Brunson revealed Thursday that her character Janine Teagues’ wardrobe and hair were meant to look bad in Season 1.

Now airing Season 3 on ABC, the Emmy-winning multi-hyphenate swung by “Hot Ones” with host Sean Evans and explained that Janine’s appearance over the years is meant to be reflective of very intentional character development.

The “Hot Ones” host asked her about the subtlety in Janine’s clothes changing as the show progressed, and she excitedly answered.

“When the show first started, a lot of people were like, ‘Oh my god, the budget is so bad, Janine’s hair looks so bad. It’s like, ‘It looks bad on purpose.’ She’s a girl who doesn’t quite know what to do with her hair and wardrobe yet, but she’s proud of herself regardless,” Brunson said. “That’s what I want people to take away with that kind of character. Everybody’s not perfect or knows how to do it all. Janine’s a character now who has started to watch some YouTube videos and she’s like, ‘That’s how I maintain my curls.’ And then she went, ‘Maybe not that shirt with that skirt.’”

“That’s fun, it’s a way for us to show her brain on the outside of her head,” she added. “And it’s important to really have those things for all characters, but especially a young Black girl character.”

Evans also asked Brunson where she thinks the next generation of showrunners will come from, and she reflected on the preparation needed to break into Hollywood.

“I could tell you that I think that some of them will come from TikTok, whatever thing happens next, but I know what I look for when I’m watching videos online and I see talented people,” she said. “I think there’s talent, and then I see the people who are able to create worlds and to deliver things on a schedule. It requires education.”

She added her own experience following this path, emphasizing the need to do the work and educate oneself about the industry.

“I know even when I started and knew that I wanted to be a creative showrunner, I got some books, I did some reading. I saw how it was done in the past. I saw how things were changing,” she said. “You just have to educate yourself. For some reason sometimes, people think they don’t have to educate themselves about entertainment. That is sad to me.”

Watch the full segment in the video above.


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