Spoiler alert! Do not proceed when you’ve got not watched Sunday’s episode of Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist.

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist flashed again six years in the past in its penultimate episode of season 2, which revisited Zoey’s first day at SPRQ Point (additionally when she met her future finest pal Max) but in addition revealed a well being scare that just about up-ended her household.

Through an emotional remedy session, Zoey recounts the primary time she was compelled to actually face the thought of loss and grief, that it wasn’t when her father was dying from progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) however quite when her mom had a small coronary heart assault. The timing could not have come at a worst time, with Zoey preventing for considered one of two coveted full-time positions at SPRQ Point (her dream firm) in a Hunger Games-model, multi-round problem.

With the assistance of her accomplice, Max — who wasn’t precisely her first alternative — they by some means survive to the top. But when it got here time for SPRQ Point CEO Danny Michael Davis to call which two of the remaining 4 would win the 2 jobs, he picks Max. And whereas Max and Zoey did not instantly get on the appropriate foot (and are, within the current day, on the outs), he gave up the job and persuaded Danny Michael Davis to offer it to Zoey — even arriving on the hospital to share the excellent news. 

As Zoey’s therapist so perceptively stated throughout her session, “It’s as much a love story as it is a loss story.” The solely query is, will Zoey do one thing about it earlier than it is too late? Following Sunday’s episode, sequence star Skylar Astin discusses Zoey and Max’s surprising first assembly all these years in the past, the place they stand within the current day with Max’s transfer to New York City looming and why he believes there will not be a straightforward reply with reference to their relationship standing by the top of the season. 

ET: This week’s episode of Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist fills numerous blanks by way of the origins of Zoey’s and Max’s relationship, and the way they met. What makes this one so particular? 

Skylar Astin

: Episode 12 is a flashback episode and is utilized as backstory for Zoey along with her mother and father, but it surely’s additionally origin story of Zoey and Max and Zoe at SPRQ Point. There’s numerous nice story areas there and a very enjoyable alternative to offer some context to the present-day Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist. Even with characters like Tobin and Leif, simply to see the place they got here from, their development and it is enjoyable to plant these Easter eggs previously that we get to see realized in current day. 

Tobin has a totally totally different look with some severe facial hair, Leif seems like a totally different individual, Max is much more aggressive and in his personal head. How did it really feel to revisit the not-so-distant previous? 

So enjoyable. It’s a interval piece of six years in the past, so it is not like we’re telling a narrative too far previously. But it is simply lengthy sufficient to offer your character just a little bit extra pep in his step. I bought to be a bit extra jovial, a bit extra sarcastic. I feel Max had a bit extra sarcasm in his earlier days at SPRQ Point. I used to be occupied with the pilot and within the pilot, I discussed that I haven’t got a lot drive. And not even in a tragic approach, he is proudly talked about to Zoey that he would not consider he is administration materials and is completely advantageous simply accepting a paycheck and doing the naked minimal. To dial that again even additional and consider the place he was out of school — take it or go away it, you understand? It’s an fascinating place for Max to now. He has struggled a bit along with his identification and who he’s as a businessman now, and as a son to his father and desirous to show him mistaken. You get to see that there is numerous insecurity beneath that pretend confidence that he carried within the pilot and likewise on this flashback episode.

Zoey's Playlist

Sergei Bachlakov/NBC/Lionsgate

Had you at all times had questions on Zoey and Max’s preliminary assembly?

I feel it might have been a secure assumption that when Max and Zoey met, they bought alongside immediately and immediately had that enjoyable banter, began gossiping concerning the different folks on the workplace. But seems they had been oil and water and Max was a jerk to her. She’s bought a really Type A character, much more so within the flashback and Max has extra of an off-the-cuff approach of approaching life and his work, which actually, actually irks Zoey. So it was actually enjoyable to play that and have them meet at reverse ends and are available collectively and actually forge a friendship.

It says quite a bit that he was extra within the SPRQ Point frisbees.

That simply says all of it, proper? It’s like he cares extra about free merch and free swag, as a result of he would not even know that is Zoey’s dream. It’s like she will be able to’t wait, the whole lot’s coming collectively and Max is simply there for the chance and for possibly some frisbees.

What about Zoey did Max gravitate towards initially on that first day? 

It’s the enjoyable, flirty attraction of “Who is this person? Why is she wearing a shiny suit?” It’s a man that you’d assume is simply having a go at her and having enjoyable teasing her, however what you actually perceive additional within the episode is that he really admires her work ethic and nearly needs that he may really feel the identical approach — that each deflection is actually masking the truth that he does need to do effectively. He does need to impress his father and it is in all probability that angle masking his worry of rejection and his worry of disappointing his household.

One of my favourite moments from the episode is Max and Leif’s impromptu sing-off of Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud.” What was it like filming that scene?

I recognize that. I beloved filming that scene. I beloved creating it. As far because the blocking and the roadmap, we at all times have an fascinating needle to string any time we sing out of the context of Zoey’s actuality in real-life singing. We’ve accomplished it with the flash mob [in season 1] and another cases, however fascinating is doing this little duet does present context for the episode in season 1 once I did the flash mob. We had thought that that was a little bit of a leap, like, “Wow, why would a coder in San Francisco be so comfortable performing and be comfortable singing?” Even although he mentions how he goes out on the limb. Seeing that he’s that type of an individual who would in all probability bust out at karaoke or on this case, bust out some Ed Sheeran on a escape room model scavenger hunt, it supplies you context into a few of Max’s wit.

At the top of the episode, we discover out that Max was really the one who bought the job, however persuaded Danny Michael Davis that Zoey deserved it extra. What do you make of his resolution and what it illuminated with reference to his values and what he noticed in Zoey?

It’s very noble of him to do this. Clearly the dialog that that they had on the steps at SPRQ Point had an affect on him. When you quit your place to offer one other individual a chance, there should be an actual cause there. Having her inform him that she’s at all times dreamed about this and that she cares, I simply assume he felt responsible, like, “How could I take this job away from someone who truly deserves it more?” Everything that she had gone by and was going by and was nonetheless managing to excel on the problem. I do know Max may by no means have accomplished it with out Zoey. And I feel he believes SPRQ Point could be a approach higher place with Zoey in it. You clearly see that in current day, how effectively she is succeeding and take a look at them now. Max is not even there anymore and thriving in his personal new career, however Zoey is just not solely answerable for the fourth flooring, however she’s the brand new Joan.

This episode type of was completely positioned, by way of the place issues might land with Zoey and Max along with his massive resolution to probably relocate to New York City for the popup restaurant. Where do you see their friendship/relationship at this cut-off date as a result of there’s a fork within the street for them? 

They’re at a little bit of a crossroads, however I feel that the separation is wholesome. It might be finest for Max, since Zoey is just not solely courting Simon, however Max is courting Rose and he additionally is actually centered on his enterprise. It’s one factor to say you are going to go on a pause, however then to see them on a regular basis thereafter, whether or not it is at a celebration or a gap… I do not know that it is the neatest thing if they’re really going to keep up a friendship and get again to that friendship. If it is the perfect factor for them to simply be in one another’s lives so constantly, and in the way in which that they do — even in episode 11, once they attempt to go on a double date, how that utterly backfires and it is simply not honest to any of the 4 folks concerned in that double date. 

In an earlier episode, Max confronts Zoey concerning the complete back-and-forth factor that they are doing and calling out how “unhealthy” it’s appeared to be an an eyeopener for Zoe. Was that dialog a needed one to have? 

I do and Jane [Levy] performed that scene so fantastically. You may really feel her coronary heart break there, but it surely’s needed for them to progress. And then to both begin their new journey as simply associates or to have a greater understanding about the place they’re at. Max has, for some time, actually stood by and been robust and been supportive of Zoey’s course of, particularly whereas she’s been grieving the demise of her father. It possibly is the appropriate time for him to select up the dialog and say, “Hey, we can’t keep doing this if that stuff’s going to come up.” I really like when Max places his foot down with Zoey. Not only for Max, however for Zoey. It’s necessary that she is aware of that. Max would not have that window into somebody’s unconscious the way in which that Zoey does. It’s a blessing and a curse for her as you have seen all through the season, however typically folks like Max have to simply come out and say it and I’m glad he bought that chance and I’m glad that Zoey actually heard him. You may inform that she was clearly affected by these phrases.

Zoey's Playlist

Sergei Bachlakov/NBC/Lionsgate

Will we see a call with reference to Max and Zoey earlier than the top of the finale?

I do not assume so. We have numerous story left to inform and I do not know if we actually wrapped it up in an entire bow. But I additionally do not assume we’ll have followers pondering we’re taking any straightforward approach out and leaving it up to an entire cliffhanger. We deal with it the way in which our present at all times does. Not utterly anticipated, however very thoughtfully and never simply considerate to the characters that we’re representing, but in addition the those who had been telling the story to. That’s not saying that we’re catering to any fanbase of a sure relationship, I simply assume that we all know audiences today are very sensible, very intelligent and deserve quite a bit out of those tales. The writers and Austin [Winsberg] have simply accomplished an unbelievable job at increasing this world and giving us one thing actually particular to stay up for in a possible season 3.

Do you assume Max will be capable to absolutely give himself to the Rose relationship with Zoey nonetheless type of orbiting round his life?

It stays to be seen. Katie Findlay is such an unimaginable actor. She does such an incredible job of enjoying Rose. She makes it not possible for audiences to not see her facet on this complete story. We must have respect for that as effectively. If it is meant to be, it should occur. If not, we should not be telling the story of a personality like Rose, who simply stands idly by and everybody’s simply ready for the one who’s not able to be with them on this present. Whether or not they work out actually stays to be seen at this level, however I be ok with the 2 of them. She’s an extremely viable possibility for Max. Austin and the writers did such a very good job not making this character somebody who the viewers is meant to obviously perceive is just not proper for Max. Sometimes writers can write these sorts of tropes of that is the one who’s making an attempt to alter Max for the worst and Zoey’s so clearly the appropriate individual for him. Human nature is extra difficult than that and we are inclined to faucet into that. Simon in some ways, there is a cause why there’s so many individuals that need Simon and Zoey to finish up collectively. That’s due to the characters, due to the way in which they’re performed and the way in which they’re written. Lots of people need Max and Zoey to finish up collectively. I’m positive many individuals need Max and Rose to finish up collectively or sure folks need these folks to be alone for some time.

One of the spotlight musical performances was the quilt of ‘NSync’s “Tearin’ Up My Heart” with you, John Clarence Stewart and Alex Newell. Do you may have a private favourite from the season?

I really like “Tearin’ Up My Heart.” I really like any time we get to do something boy band, that is an enormous factor for me. I’ve now gotten to do “Bye, Bye, Bye” and “Tearin’ Up My Heart,” so you will by no means hear me complain. But yeah, I beloved that that rendition was so easy, however then we simply play with harmonies and these actually easy boy band strikes that weren’t overly accomplished. Mandy [Moore] and Team Dance had been so considerate in giving a style of what their boy band internal monologues could be. They’re not utterly mocking it, not being satirical and being truthful to the second. I feel that is why folks beloved it as a result of it wasn’t probably the most show-stopping quantity, however it was satisfying. It left me personally wanting extra from these three vocally. As far as a favourite music or sequence, I actually beloved that I bought to do “New York State of Mind” this yr. That was an enormous full-circle second for me as a singer; I’ve been singing that music a very long time. Of course, I really like that vast sequence in episode 2 that the writers had been so unimaginable to reward me with and Jane with.

What are you able to inform us about subsequent week’s finale, which has me anxious due to its title, “Zoey’s Extraordinary Goodbye”…

It’s good and it is actually going to make you need to speak to folks.

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on NBC. For extra on the sequence, watch under.