It may seem harsh to refer to your main character as a b--. But there's really no other way to describe opportunist Chloe (Krysten Ritter) in the new ABC sitcom "Don't Trust the B-- in Apartment 23." With the self-professed "morals of a pirate," Chloe is an unaffected schemer whose only loyalties lie with her close friends.
"If Holly Golightly and Satan had a child, it would be my character," admits Ritter.
James Van Der Beek, who plays Chloe's best friend James Van Der Beek in a gleeful send-up of the "Dawson's Creek" star, has a slightly different view: "[She's] the love child of Lucille Ball and Sid Vicious," he says.
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No matter her mythical parentage, Chloe tiptoes the line between bad and just plain awful -- in the pilot, she robs her sweet, new-to-New-York roommate, June (Dreama Walker) -- which means the balance between audiences loving or loathing Ms. B is even more precarious.
But Ritter rationalizes that Chloe's actions, despite how outlandish they seem, aren't always selfish. (Wait till you see how Chloe suggests June dump her boyfriend in tonight's premiere.) "As long as I approach my character in making positive choices, that the end result seems to be somewhat heartfelt, you can get away with it," she says.
After all, even seemingly naive June is able to crack Chloe's tough-girl persona and ultimately become a member of her oddball entourage.
"June definitely ... outsmarts Chloe a little bit," Walker says. "That's part of our dynamic and part of what makes her respect me and like me in the end."
So is the B-word a severe moniker after all? Ritter doesn't think so.
"I'm an evil b--," she says.