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NOC Interview: Néstor Carbonell

NOC: Interview With Nestor Carbonell

  |   Written by Sophia Soto

Article From Nerds of Color

Nestor Carbonell plays Yanko Flores in the acclaimed and award-winning Apple Original drama The Morning Show. Season two premiered Friday, September 17 on Apple TV+ and new episodes are released weekly, every Friday.

Picking up after the explosive events of season one, season two finds The Morning Show team emerging from the wreckage of Alex (Aniston) and Bradley’s (Witherspoon) actions, to a new UBA and a world in flux, where identity is everything and the chasm between who we present as and who we really are comes into play.
I had the chance to ask the actor about where season two picks up, his character, being part of a show that deals with such important topics, his personal takeaway from the series, and more! Keep reading to find out everything we discussed.

Huge congrats on the new season, it’s great.

Nestor Carbonell: Thank you so much, and I feel very much at home on your outlet. I am a nerd, just ask my kids.

First off, I want to ask how it felt getting to return for a second season and what were you most excited for?

Well, Sophia, for so many reasons, I was excited. I mean, I think for so many of us who were because of COVID, the subsequent shutdown, and how it affected me, I was grateful that I had a job to come back to, many people didn’t have that luxury. I was grateful for that. So gratitude was the first thing, just being grateful to have a job and that we’re able to come back to work in a safe environment thanks to Apple, which was able to make that happen in an incredible way. So that and then actually getting to work on a show that handles the issues of the day in such an incredible way with this obviously, extraordinary cast and the writing is just so good, the crew, the directors, everybody. So, it’s a treat to get to work with material like this and with people like this. So for all those reasons, I was excited to come back.

The season one finale had an explosive ending, can you give me a preview of where we pick up and what fans can expect from the new season?

Absolutely, so we pick up I think, roughly around six months after where we left off when Alex proverbially blew up the network and it changed the network forever. It had people fired and there’s a big shake up in the network, including Alex herself. She basically had a bit of a breakdown and had to sort of come to terms with who she was, her identity, and try to find herself, while the show kept going under new leadership. And that’s where the show picks up, about six months after the fact, predating COVID still, so it’s before COVID hits the US. So, we get to find out through the show how COVID sort of comes into the into the news cycle, what people think about it, what they say, the silly comments some people say, including my character. Then we get to explore other issues that we’ve all explored in the last few years — namely, the advent of cancel culture, the dangers of it, the pitfalls of it, issues of race, the 2020 election is covered to some extent, and naturally, obviously, COVID. So, a lot of big issues.

What’s in store for Yanko in season two?

More pain, you’re definitely gonna see more pain, but Yanko is brokenhearted still when we see him six months after the fact, after Claire broke up with him. So you’re gonna see even more pain when he sort of unwittingly gets involved in and becomes a target of being canceled, having to sort of fight for his innocence and fight for it in the face of a boss that has painted him with one brushstroke, as someone who probably should apologize. He just simply doesn’t see it that way and he feels deeply misunderstood. So you’re going to see Yanko in even more pain than you saw before.

Fans love seeing new dynamics on their screen, whether that’s a friendship or a relationship. Which dynamic are you most excited for the fans to see?

Oh, there’s so many great dynamics. Julianna Margulies comes into the season and she has a tremendous dynamic both with Alex and especially Bradley. I love seeing that. I love watching this entire cast, I don’t get to play with many of them because I’m a bit of an island unto myself on the show as a weatherman. The weatherman is always marginalized. So, I’m a bit of a satellite story but I love what happens with Cory and with Mark Duplass’ character Chip, everyone has as sort of as a great trajectory and painful trajectory. Obviously, what happens with Mitch is extraordinary, his storyline, I won’t give it away, is mind blowing. I think it’s one of the most interesting storylines that the show covers, for sure.

How are you feeling about putting your work on the new season out there?

I’m excited. I mean, I’m bummed that it’s taken so long. Naturally, life has intervened, but I am excited. I’m excited that the world will get to see all the hard work that the writers and obviously, the cast and crew have put in into the show. Hopefully, everyone’s point of view will be represented in some fashion or other through the different characters, which is what I love about the show is that it doesn’t shy away from leading into points of view that we may or may not like. So hopefully, everyone feels represented and at the end of the day, hopefully, everyone’s entertained. Ultimately, that’s what we’re trying to do here.

If you could create your own tagline for either your character or season two, what would you make it?

That unfortunately, perception is everything in this business.

What is it like to be part of a show that really deals with serious and important topics that are going to start conversations?

It’s fun, it’s really fun to handle topics, current topics, because usually, as an actor, you’re typically doing escapist stuff where you’re trying to get away from reality. Here, we’re writing right into it, we’re handling it and tackling it head on in many ways, in many people’s opinion in a controversial way, because we’re giving credence to different points of view that some people don’t even want to hear. So I love that and as an actor, you want conflict, that’s what you want and the conflict is current, it’s topical. It became sort of very water cooler conversation in the first season with the whole issue of how the show handled Me Too, which is what I love. You want to get people talking, you want discourse, you want people arguing, I mean, we’ve gotten so far away from that because of cancel culture, of saying something that might offend someone. I love that the show is forcing people to get back to that.

Did you personally have any sort of takeaway from the show?

I mean, I think if there’s a big takeaway, sort of big, broader picture is this notion of gratitude. The show does handle COVID and how that shakes up lives, the characters’ lives in the same way that has shaken everybody’s lives. I mean, it has such an impact, not the tragedy of COVID but the subsequent shutdown and what that has done to so many lives and livelihoods. The takeaway for me personally, is how grateful I am that I was one of the lucky ones, that I had a job to come back to. So gratitude is big for me, absolutely.

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