Reba Reunites With JoAnna Garcia for ‘Better With You’
Reba McEntire is no stranger to the small screen, having the title-role on 'Reba' from 2001-2007. Tonight (November 17), she reunites with her TV daughter, JoAnna Garcia (aka 'Cheyenne'), on the new show, 'Better With You.' JoAnna's character, Mia, is a pregnant 24-year-old, who is engaged to 'Casey,' played by Jake Lacy. In tonight's episode, the couple decides to fire Mia's parents, portrayed by Kurt Fuller and Debra Jo Rupp, as their wedding planners and bring in the highly sought Lorraine Ashley, played by Reba, to take over.
"I was a big fan of the show, I love the concept," Reba tells The Boot. "It's totally relatable, no matter what age group you are. If you're older, you've been in the younger characters' situation, and the middle group and the older group. It's, 'Oh, that's my parents. That's my sister and her husband.' It's just so witty and a great concept. I fell in love with the pilot."
Whose idea was it for Reba to make an appearance on the show, though? "The writers made this role for her," JoAnna explains. "They had a million ideas for her, a lot of them included her in tight clothing. [laughs] They came to me with the idea and said, 'We'd love to have her on the show, do you think she'd do it?' I said, 'I mean, she's really busy, but I would love it.' So I called Reba, and her agents did the whole business thing, but I was like 'No pressure, but it would be awesome.' [laughs]"
"I love working with her again," JoAnna continues.
"Except I'm not getting on to her like I did in 'Reba,'" Reba interjects.
"She doesn't smack me much now, I smack her," JoAnna says with a laugh.
"Yeah, payback," Reba agrees.
"I wouldn't be here if it hadn't been for the experience I had on 'Reba,'" JoAnna explains. "All that I learned, not just as an actress but as a career woman from Reba, and learning that you can do it all and you can be kind and lovely and genuine. You can care about the people you're working with - we had a family - I knew we had such great people we were working with here and I wanted it to be something that was as lovely and respectful and wonderful as what I had. I wouldn't be here it weren't for her, and I mean that genuinely, I learned so much, so it's exciting to share it with her. It's like having my mom come, when my parents come on set, I'm just as proud. It's like, 'Look at what I'm doing here.' I'm just so grateful. What she brings to the show is so tremendous."
Reba has been focusing on her music career for the past few years, but acting has always been a part of her life. "Acting is one of the things I am," Reba tells us. "My new album is called 'All the Women I Am,' and all the women I am does include acting."
"The album talks about the woman who gives advice to her friends and has been jilted by a guy and stands up and says, 'If you want to talk to me, you've got to hear me on the radio,'" Reba explains. "It also talks about being a mother, a person who's been divorced. I am all those women. I need to get a song about acting, so it will really include all the women I am, but I do I love to act, it's a lot of fun I've been acting all my life. In my mind, there was always an invisible camera following me, ever since I was a little girl. I don't know why, but that's the way I always felt about it. On stage singing songs, you become the person in the song so you're acting out the song, but to be able to be with an ensemble is the icing on the cake. I love that part."
JoAnna's respect for Reba isn't just limited to the superstar's acting career, though. "I love Nashville," JoAnna gushes. "It's such a great town, and I'm a huge country music fan. That's what I listen to on the radio in the car. I feel like every time I meet someone who is a singer in country music, they're like, 'Oh, you're Reba's daughter.' I'm like, 'Yeah, baby!' I have an in already because of her."
Reba gets back to her 'day job' when she hits the road with George Strait and Lee Ann Womack on the second leg of their wildly successful tour, which begins again on January 14. Their first 2011 stop is in Austin, Texas; check out tour dates and more here.
Reba's 'Better with You' episode airs tonight (November 17) at 8:30 PM ET on ABC.