Global is set to debut a new comedy series tonight at 9 p.m. Created by Katie Ford (Desperate Housewives) and Jane Cooper Ford (Material World), Working the Engels revolves around a family that must band together following the death of the patriarch, who was the majority breadwinner and who has left them with a mountain of debt.
The Engels decide to work their father’s storefront law firm even though only one of them, Jenna, is qualified to practice law. Jenna is played by Kacey Rohl, who has appeared on Hannibal, The Killing and Fringe.
Rohl on playing Jenna: “I love playing Jenna because she’s a great mix. She is very complicated and has many layers. She can go to work and be a great lawyer and then come home, run into an island and drop a plate. She’s very complex and not perfect in any way but tries really hard. She also has a really high tolerance for weirdness. I think she’s grown up around these crazy characters and has learned that nothing’s falling apart until it’s actually falling apart. She is able to take a lot in stride and just accept people for who they are, even if they’re absolute idiots.”
Azura Skye, who you may remember from The WB’s Zoe, Duncan, Jake & Jane, plays the other sister, Sandy, who is a former pill-popper and has never worked a day in her life. Skye feels that Sandy is such a gift to play as an actor. She continues, “When we meet Sandy she’s very much on the rebound. She is rebounding from a dug and alcohol problem, from a divorce, and from some time spent in a cult. But she’s on the upswing, trying to be a better person and make the world a better place. I don’t know that she’s succeeding but she is trying her hardest, which I really admire.”
Sandy becomes the new receptions while their brother Jimmy becomes the firm’s investigator.
Jimmy’s played by Benjamin Arthur, who recently starred on Less Than Kind – the final season of LTK also dealt with the passing of the patriarch. Jimmy’s a petty criminal and “bad boy” but is still devoted to his family. Arthur likens his character to “A little bit of Tom Cruise and a little bit of Luke Perry.” He continues, “’Just because you go to prison doesn’t make you a criminal’ – that’s Andrea’s [Martin, who plays the mother] line in the show. Jimmy went to prison for embezzling money from the family. We’re not sure what happened. Some sort of a pyramid scheme.”
And yes, the mom is played by Andrea Martin of SCTV fame. Ceil (short for Celia) is fiercely protective of her three adult children. Martin will get to reunite with two of her former SCTV co-stars, Eugene Levy and Martin Short and described working with them again: “It felt seamless, like no time had lapsed and we were just where we should be – working together. We worked together for so long and it was a pivotal time in our careers. When you make that kind of bond it never goes away and that’s just want it felt like. Nobody had to gear up to do anything. It’s just like we were talking in a corner and then the camera rolled. That’s how it felt.”
In addition to SCTV alums, look out for Arthur’s former Less Than Kind co-star, Benjamin Ayres (also from jPod and Saving Hope) as Sandy’s ex-husband in the third episode while Breaker High’s Rachel Wilson appears in the second episode.
Tonight’s premiere sees Jenna leave her job at a big corporate law firm to take over her late father’s law practice. Working the Engels airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on Global.