In an interview with BuzzFeed News’ morning show AM to DM, Brosnahan said the conversation around the parenting skills of her stand-up comedian character, Midge Maisel, wouldn’t be happening if she were a man.
“Most of the criticism in that regard has been leveled at Midge, and I suppose it’s because the expectation is that [ex-husband Joel] wouldn’t be as present and wouldn’t be around as much,” Brosnahan said.
“But it’s not a show really about Midge parenting; It’s a show about her following her dreams as a stand-up comedian.”
While acknowledging her character isn’t “parent of the year,” Brosnahan said she still believes Midge loves her children very much.
“I appreciate that this is a different kind of motherhood than the one I’ve seen, and for some people maybe is a more accurate representation of it,” she said.
“This hasn’t been a conversation that I’ve seen surrounding other shows with male leads who are also sometimes self-involved in their pursuit of a new dream,” she added. “And so that’s been kind of frustrating.”
Michael Zegen, who plays Midge’s ex-husband Joel, also chimed in to acknowledge the sexism: “Why don’t they ask that about Joel?” he asked.
Set in the 1950s, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel takes place in the 1950s and follows Midge’s journey from a divorced housewife to a stand-up comedian, navigating sexism and other challenges along the way.
The show has been very well received critically, winning eight Emmy Awards last year.
Two guest stars who will be joining for the third season include Cary Elwes, best known for his role as Westley in the cult classic, The Princess Bride, and Sterling K. Brown from This Is Us.
Though she couldn’t reveal much about Elwes or Brown’s characters, Brosnahan did say, “I have been fortunate enough to shoot a couple days with Sterling, and it’s been a blast.”
“He’s been amazing,” she said, “and he’s a really really exciting addition to the show.”