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Another difference when the second half of the sophomore run kicks up again Monday? Bay (Marano) and Daphne (Katie Leclerc), switched at birth when they were much younger, get new jobs and move in with their biological families.
“Bay starts working at an amusement park where there are leis and flowers in the hair,” Marano says. “For Bay, an old love interest Ty (The Lying Game‘s Blair Redford) — who was in our first season — has returned from being in the military. They are figuring out if they want to start things back up, if they don’t want to start things back up. He’s been through war and so much has happened with her in the year that they’ve been apart so that’s an interesting line to play.”
The actress previews the remaining episodes of the second season (Marano reveals Lea Thompson directs the seventh episode back) and what viewers can expect for Bay.
The Hollywood Reporter: What can we expect with Bay living with Angelo (Gilles Marini) and Regina (Constance Marie)?
Vanessa Marano: Since Regina has returned from rehab, the whole thing about Switched at Birth was that everyone was all living under the same roof. Daphne and Regina were in the guest house right across the way. Now, Daphne has been staying with the Kennishes and Bay has been staying with the Sorrentos. It’s a look at how things would have been if they had that time together and whether or not it would have been good for everybody. I think it’s a lot harder on the Sorrentos than they thought it would be. Angelo and Regina had this idealized version of what their life would have been, and it’s not like that at all.
THR: How do Bay and Daphne handle their new living situations? Who has a better time dealing with it?
Marano: Bay is sort of the more difficult to get along with and she has a tremendously tough time with it because Regina knew about the switch all along. She had always been shut off toward Bay, and when Angelo found out Daphne wasn’t his kid, he’s been trying to work his way back in a very apologetic manner. The Kennishes just wanted to get to know their daughter so badly that they always felt left out of the loop because Bay so yearned to be part of a family that wanted with her. Whereas on the flip side to that, Daphne is trying to make everybody happy, she’s trying to get to know her biological parents, that she doesn’t want Regina feel like she doesn’t need her anymore. It’s interesting because the sides of the spectrum has always been Daphne trying to make everybody happy and Bay trying so hard to belong somewhere. Now we’re at a point where both of them feel like they belong but their expectations of what feels like to be happy and what it feels like to belong are not exactly what the reality is.
THR: Will we see them go back to their previous living arrangements, with Bay at the Kennishes and Daphne back with her family?
Marano: That’s the whole thing. Right from the pilot, nothing could go back to the way it was. With every step that they’ve taken as characters, it’s been shockingly different. Toby (Lucas Grabeel), the brother on the show, is getting married. He’s only 18. That’ll turn his life upside down. Regina relapsed with her alcoholism and is now living with the man who fathered her child who she hasn’t lived with in 13 years.
THR: What has it been like revisiting the Ty and Bay relationship?
Marano: Out of all the boyfriends Bay has had, Ty has been one of my favorites. He was the first one that she had and the first glimpse into the life that they would’ve had. She would’ve been neighbors with this kids, she would’ve fallen in love with this kid throughout childhood. And she never had the opportunity to have that so they come from two different worlds at this point in time but they’re meant for the same world.
THR: What kind of conflicts do they encounter?
Marano: He’s back from war. He’s seen a lot of things that broaden the big picture for you, and Bay, though she’s gone through a lot [about being switched at birth], is still just a high school student. They’re at a point right now where they’re trying to get back to a place that they were before he left and seeing if their relationship can withstand that.
THR: Since Bay has a new job, where do we find Daphne?
Marano: John (D.W. Moffett) is now officially in full senator mode, so Daphne’s interning at his office and they get into a little bit of an issue where both of their politics seem to clash a little bit. (Watch a scene below from the season 2.5 premiere between John, Bay and Daphne.)
THR: Is there an upcoming episode that you’re particularly excited about?
Marano: Our fifth episode is our “what if” episode. What if the girls and families had found out about the switch when the girls were 3 instead of 16, how different would their lives have been? The reason we go into the “what if” episode — the Twilight Zone [hour] — is due to a fight that happens between two characters and a life-changing event that results from that fight. That’s a very interesting scene.
THR: What has been the most surprising development over the course of the series?
Marano: Regina knowing about the switch was the biggest shocker. That was [creator] Lizzy [Weiss] and probably Constance [Marie]’s proudest moment too because Lizzy did tell Constance because it did affect the way she was playing the character. Both of them kept it so quiet and that was really a shocker for the entire cast — and I think the entire audience.
Switched at Birth returns at 8 p.m. Monday on ABC Family.
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