Keiko Agena is best known for her roles as Lane Kim on the WB’s Gilmore Girls and as White House Press Secretary Britta Kagen on Scandal. When she’s not on television, you can find Keiko performing in LA with the improv group Renegade Justice Patrol.
Currently, she’s working on a project that needs your help to hit its Kickstarter goal: Super(fluous) is a comedic webseries that tells the story of what happens when superhero roommates stop being polite and start getting real. Or something like that.
With only a few days left in the campaign, I sat down with Keiko to talk about how she got involved with the project and how she’s actually not really a nerd.
Keith: How did you get involved with Super(fluous)?
Keiko: I was asked to join the project by Sean Harrigan who is one of the creators of Super(fluous). We’re in the same improv group that’s been together for about a year, formed out of iO West called Hometown. We were just talking about different writing projects one night when we were hanging out. (FYI — half of “improv rehearsals” are always just hanging out!) And he mentioned this Web project he’s been working on.
What drew you to the project?
As soon as he sent over the script I just loved it! I couldn’t get to the end of it before I wanted to send the email back saying, “Yes! Yes! Get me on this project.”
Can you talk about your role a little bit?
Her name is Delia. She, along with her two other roommates, are superheroes in a world full of superheroes. Which I just love. I think people can relate to feeling like you are already doing the best that you can but the world only needs extra-extraordinary people. Nothing seems good enough. Ha! Delia’s super power is that she can cook things that will make people feel a certain way. Elicit certain thoughts from them.
While you’re best known for your work on TV, you have some geek cred too. Aside from appearing in Transformers, you also wrote your own superhero story (with art by Ming Doyle) in the first Secret Identities.
Are you a fan of the superhero genre? Would you like to do more nerd-friendly parts?
I have to be honest. I am a nerd lover but not a necessarily nerd myself. I get teased all the time about not knowing a certain references. I am the last one of my friends to see any of those movies. I love romantic comedy. I know… I’ve lost your entire audience by that statement. But I do! My only saving grace is that I am surrounded by smart, geeky people. In fact, one of the film projects I am working on will star Amber Benson from Buffy the Vampire Slayer and is being written by Sarah Kuhn who also wrote One Con Glory. The entire movie is in the geek world. It’s fantastic. Both of those women are brilliant.
Kickstarter is definitely a phenomenon. It’s produced big time Hollywood movies like Veronica Mars and resurrected beloved childhood institutions like Reading Rainbow, what’s your opinion on the power of Kickstarter?
Kickstarter is great. It’s a way that projects can get funded that wouldn’t have been able to before… or that would have had other pressures associated with that funding. Raising money, of course, isn’t the fun part of the creative process but it has to be done. At least through Kickstarter people can feel like they are part of something… that they’ve helped to bring a project into the world. It’s a way of voting. I mean, you definitely get a feel for what people support. I suppose it is a good way to tell if what it is that you are producing — or considering producing — is something that people actually want to watch.
Finally, tell me about the RJP.
Yes! [We] just got a MainStage show at iO West with SimmerCon! It’s crazy exciting for me because my favorite improv groups perform there and also because I get to be a part of a very diverse night. RJP is half Asian and SimmerCon is half African American. We get to share a different perspective in the show and the iO bar becomes a great place to hang out with a mix of different people.
When can folks find your shows?
Currently we go up on the second Fridays at 11pm.
The deadline to make sure Super(fluous) gets off the ground is this Saturday, June 21. Check the video below and donate if you can!