“G.C.B.” actress Jennifer Aspen weighs in on the title controversy on the forthcoming ABC prime time serial drawn from Kim Gatlin’s book, Good Christian Bitches — which then became “Good Christian Belles,” and is now reduced to its monogram.
“It’s not an anti-Christian project. I would never, ever be a part of something that attacked any religion. That’s not my thing,” says Aspen. “I spoke to the author of the book, who is a devout Christian. The point of the title was, she felt there were certain people in the Christian community acting inappropriately and giving the religion a bad name, and she wanted to call them out. If you’re going to talk the talk, you should walk the walk. So she wanted to coin the name and make it strong so people would remember it. Well, I could get behind that idea. It was a risky move, but for me, it was an enlightened one.”
However, Aspen goes on, when the company went to Dallas to shoot exteriors, “We went to church there, and talking to the members, I realized that name is very offensive to various people. When we got their viewpoints on it, I was really glad they changed the name.”
Aspen points out that “Two of our executive producers are Christians, and their faith does mean a lot to them. This project was not born out of a Hollywood idea — it was born out of that community.”
The midseason replacement comedy, set in Dallas — “Where every day is judgment day,” per the promo tag — has Leslie Bibb as a former high school mean girl who has to return to her Texas home, and face all her one-time frienemies, after her marriage ends in scandal. Annie Potts and avowed Christian Kristin Chenoweth are also in the cast.
“Leslie is the girl who was bad who has now gone good, but you’re very suspicious when she tries to friend you on Facebook. ‘How do you have the nerve to request me? Don’t you remember the terrible things you did to me?’ But you see her picture with two kids there and she looks nice.”
According to Aspen, who a Scientologist, the set contains “a rainbow of faiths. Normally, you don’t talk that much about religion or politics on a set, but on this one, we do. Not in an argumentative way. It’s more like, ‘What do you practice? That’s cool,’ respecting each other’s beliefs. I’m personally a lover of religions. because each of them contains universal truths.”
That may be, but the lusty ladies and their lines like “cleavage makes your cross hang straight” are bound to rankle more than a few. However, by the time viewers see “G.C.B.,” production of the first 13 episodes will be complete, Aspen says. “We’re dying to see when we get on the air.”