After drawing in over 2.8 million viewers during its 2011 debut, VH1’s romantic comedy series, Single Ladies is set to return to the network on May 28. Executive produced by Queen Latifah’s Flavor Unit Entertainment, season two stars Charity Shea (as April), LisaRaye McCoy (as Keisha), and former All My Children star Denise Vasi (Raquel) as they navigate through the dating scene in Atlanta.
During a recent interview with the Huffington Post, LisaRaye opened on filming season two, in addition to missing her friend Stacey Dash, and what provoked her to call out Duane Martin in JET magazine.
Congratulations on the upcoming season premiere of Single Ladies. What can fans expect from season 2 and your character, Keisha?
This year we have a new addition to the cast, Denise Vasi, Stacey Dash is no longer with us. I don’t like to use the word replace, but we added a new character to our cast, she comes from the soap opera world. Her character is different because she comes in to the premiere episode with a bang, gets the wind knocked out of her and clings to her friends. And I feel that’s what the gist of the whole series is about, it’s about friendship. She comes in and becomes one of us and then it just embarks on how we are we dating in this day and age.
Keisha is a little bit more vulnerable and open this year. I think when you have a character so strong and opinionated as Keisha you have to find faults and some weaknesses in her. You have to find those wrongdoings in her that will make you root for her. Her and Malcolm get together but then her Malcolm also fall apart too. But her ex also comes back and adds some different spice into her life, which causes problems with Malcolm. She will also have a fling with a nice gentleman. Also we have some great costars this year, we have La La, Chilli, Eve, Queen Latifah, Paula Patton. We got Lil' Romeo, T.I., Tony Rock, William Levy. So we really have some people that we’re cranking out this season. And I’m really excited to see the numbers that we do, which lets us know how much the fans like it.
And with success, of course, comes critics. What are your thoughts on media outlets who dubbed season one, “embarrassing.”
F**k’em! Let them write a show and come up with what they want to see. Until then, the people who love it, tune in.
While shooting this season, was there anything that you missed about Stacey Dash being involved with the show?
I miss my friend, because Stacey and I are friends as well, before we came to the show and after. So as a fellow actor, as an artist, of course I miss the chemistry that she and I have. But again, this is a job and this is my profession so I have been hired to do my job and I’m committed to doing that. And I believe that I do it well. I’m excited that the season is taking off the way that it is, I’m excited that Denise has joined the cast and I’m excited about the chemistry that all three of us have now. Everybody wants to be here. So that’s half the battle won right there, is when you want to be here then you get a better product. It’s not as heavy as it was last year, by no means. The synergy is there and we’re making a good product.
Have you reached out to Stacey since she parted ways with the show?
I did. We said Happy New Years to each other during New Years. And then I believe after that, I reached out to her one other time, but I want to say that I think she changed her number. But the last time that we actually communicated was New Years … One argument doesn’t break up a friendship unless it was something that was so personal, and it wasn’t personal, it was work related. We were tired, it was what it was and we moved past that. So I think that if either one of us held out against each other, we both would be fools, it’s not that serious.
Your JET magazine interview has everyone talking right now. Some were even surprised by your comments about Duane Martin.
If you know anything about me you know that I’ve been a very honest person and a very real person. And I feel when someone asks me a question it gives me the opportunity to straighten out the rumor or to straighten out the story that I do. That’s not to say that every time some gossip comes out I say, “Ah, let me go straighten it out,” no, not that. But something that directly affects my life that’s like, “oh, you’ve been friends with this person…” I’m like, “nah, nah, nah, I’m not friends with that person. I have very few friends. I’m an associate of everybody and friend of none.” And I wanted to make that clear.
Are you expecting a phone call from him in response to what you said?
Hell, nah! [Laughs] I don’t talk to him, he don’t pay any of my bills, he doesn’t do absolutely nothing for me. And what he did do for me was cause nothing but problems. So if I don’t ever see him again in life that would be cool with me. I don’t have no animosity or revenge in my heart, I actually pray about it every day. I know revenge is for God, and that’s the truth. Was it a hard pill to swallow to see and have one of your friends that you worked with for years that you’ve called a brother, be so back stabbing? Yes, it’s hurtful, but I done got over other things too, meaning my divorce. He ain’t the first friend that turned his back on me, and I’m sure it won’t be the last. I appreciate the time that he has given me, but I don’t appreciate his attitude and I don’t see the “man” in him. So for that reason alone, I’m here doing what I do. I don’t even know what he’s doing right now, I don’t even care to know what he’s doing. To him and his family I wish nothing but luck and love, it won’t be coming from me though.
Aside from Single Ladies can fans expect a third season of your reality show, The Real McCoy?
We’re in talks about it right now, so I think so. I just couldn’t get around to it this year because "Single Ladies" started a little bit earlier, and the season was little bit longer. I was so tired, but as you can tell, I’m not lacking any drama in my life, that’s for sure. [Laughs] TV One has been like family to me and I’ve been the darling of TV One. I raised their number higher than any program in their history. So with that said, I think we form a great partnership. If there’s room and time for me to come back and we can come to some agreement, then I’m there. If you don’t see me then you know damn well that they didn’t come with nothing.
Single Ladies: Season 2 Premieres May 28 at 9PM ET/PT on VH1.