Molly Bernard tells how Younger season 7 is Lauren’s next chapter

Molly Bernard. Photo credit: Irvin Rivera
Molly Bernard. Photo credit: Irvin Rivera /

Molly Bernard has been stealing scenes on Younger since she was introduced as Lauren Heller in the first season. Now in the show’s seventh—and final—season, Lauren has climbed to the top with a huge promotion, one awesome birthday party, and of course plenty of good times with her friends.

Hidden Remote spoke to Molly about saying goodbye to the fan-favorite series, which moved from TV Land to digital sibling Paramount Plus this season, and how portraying Lauren has had an impact on her personally.

Plus, we look ahead to Molly’s upcoming film Milkwater, which will be premiering on demand May 21. Get to know more as the next Younger season 7 episode drops today on Paramount Plus!

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Hidden Remote: Younger has been a major part of your career, so what is it like for you as fans are now getting to see the final season? Has it been hard to say goodbye to the show and to Lauren?

Molly Bernard:  It has been such a gift to be on this show, and it’s hard to say goodbye. This whole season, we shot the season for the fans, smack-dab in the middle of the pandemic. It’s been a labor of love this season, and it’s hard to say goodbye to Lauren, hard to say goodbye to my beautiful castmates that’ve become my family. It was a very emotional probably last whole month of shooting our show; we were all kind of messes.

HR: Lauren’s arc has been a very big one, going from Kelsey’s friend to now taking over for Diana in season 7. What are you most proud of about her and how she’s evolved from that first season?

MB: The thing I’m most proud of would actually have to be having the privilege of playing a woman who is openly queer, and just has unabashed, unadulterated confidence, and loves herself so much. I think it’s been one of the privileges of my career, getting to play someone whose queerness hasn’t been tokenized, and who’s just a very fierce, get it done woman.

I wish I had a Lauren in my life. I need someone to be a champion for me, the way that she’s a champion for Kelsey, her best friend.

HR: What are some of the highlights for you from the final Younger season?

MB:  I think Lauren really flourishes this season and comes into her own. And I will say without giving too much away—the writers give her a perfectly brilliant Lauren ending.

HR: In addition to her amazing achievements, she’s also provided a lot of the comic relief for the show. What’s your favorite, funniest Lauren moment?

MB: I think my favorite moment of all time was when Lauren busts out of the pink Hummer for the surprise bachelorette party, and screams at Diana, “Get in the Hummer, b–ch.” (laughs) None of us could keep a straight face. I will never forget that. It was such a great, fabulously written scene, and such a great scene to shoot.

HR: You’ve been with Younger from the start. How much has this role meant to you, both as an actress and just as you said, personally with this group of people?

MB: It was my first job out of grad school, and I originally auditioned to play a character that had six lines, as a guest star in the pilot. And then they just kept having me come back, and it has defined my life. I think the great success of serialized episodic television is at a certain point you stop watching for the story, and you’re actually just watching for the characters, to see how they respond to the story, and to see what they do. Years ago, when I was into Mad Men, I realized, “Oh, I’m just actually watching because I love these people.”

It has been such a gift, and so amazing to get to embody the same person for seven years, and be with her as she grows, as well as the other characters on the show. It’s such a cool thing to be a part of, and such a fun thing to watch. And we have all grown so much; Hilary [Duff] and I were talking about that the other day, even just how much Nico [Tortorella] has evolved and changed. We’re all on our own journey, and it’s been such a joy to be on it with them.

HR: The show is a comedy, but it’s also addressed a lot of meaningful issues like ageism and sexuality. Are you hoping the audience takes away anything in particular when they look back on Younger?

MB: I think our show has fundamentally a really good heart. In a lot of ways it’s a 22-minute comedy, but…the show has an allegorical element, it’s meant to be learned from. And I hope that fans really take away how much effort goes into that, and how we make it for them. It’s fun to be on a show, but also there’s so much consciousness about how the story gets told, and what our greater messaging is.

The ageism is a huge part of the show; that’s the crux of the show. So as light as it is, it’s about a very serious issue. And I think our show tackles really serious issues, in almost a sardonic way. We take them head on and our characters, even if they get caught up in the midst of it, usually come out on top. Which I think is fun, it’s fantasy, because not all of those real-life scenarios pan out like that.

HR: The good news is that fans will get to see the next Molly Bernard project as the show is winding down. What do we need to know about your upcoming movie?

MB: This film that I did about two years ago now, pre-pandemic, Milkwater, is coming out in May, and I am so excited. I love this movie. I play this young woman, Milo, who’s kind of lost and flailing, and becomes a surrogate, for essentially a stranger. This film chronicles queer families, queer family making, and also, I think, is a beautiful coming of age story [that] captures a really complicated, late-twenties woman who’s trying to figure her s–t out.

At times she’s unlikable, and at other times I think everyone will identify with her. And getting to play a character that goes through many emotional states, and circumstances, was just so fun. I am just excited to share it with the world.

HR: Do you have any parting words for the Younger audience?

MB: I guess I would say we love our fans so much, and we’re so sad to say goodbye. I’ve just been so thrilled, to be able to play and represent the queer community. And I’m just so thrilled for fans to see how it ends, and that we made it with such love.

It’s been one of the honors of my life, and I’m so sad to say goodbye. But if you miss us, you can always go back and watch seasons one to seven.

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Younger streams every Thursday exclusively on Paramount Plus.