I am not a set decorator nor a production designer – I am simply a movie and television aficionado who happens to be obsessed with locations. But that doesn’t stop people from peppering me with questions regarding décor from their favorite productions – where to get a bedspread featured in a particular film or the name of a paint color visible on a certain show. One location certainly stands out as receiving far more interest than the rest, though. I can’t open my email in recent years without someone asking, “Who makes the wallpaper in Jen’s dining room?” or “What hue is Jen’s kitchen?” The Jen interested parties are referring to is Laguna Beach realtor Jen Harding (Christina Applegate) from the Netflix series “Dead to Me.”
Created by Liz Feldman, the dark comedy centers around Harding, following the death of her husband, as she navigates being freshly single alongside a new best friend, Judy Hale (Linda Cardellini), whom she meets in a grief group and, as audiences quickly learn, is the person responsible for her spouse’s death via a hit-and-run. The series, and its main house, became instant favorites with viewers, as evidenced by my inbox – not to mention that of set decorator Brandi Kalish. According to Architectural Digest, ever since “Dead to Me’s” May 2019 debut, she has been “inundated with emails from people who want to copy the décor on the show, particularly in the home of the main character.” I feel ya, Brandi! Three years later and queries about Jen’s design choices are still my most fielded.
Fans should be delighted to know that Jen and her beloved home will finally be returning to the small screen for “Dead to Me’s” highly anticipated third season on November 17, following several lengthy delays (due to both Covid and Applegate’s recent heartbreaking multiple sclerosis diagnosis). Sadly though, this season will be the last. As Feldman told Us Weekly, “I always had the sense that I wanted this show to be a relatively short-running one. Halfway through shooting season two, an idea came to me that felt very true to the show — and I realized that it could be a really great way to end it . . . Sometimes I think I’m making a mistake, letting go of this incredible alchemy we have with Christina and Linda, but it just feels right to me that this is how we should close out the story.” If the trailer is any indication, the series culmination is sure to be teeming with the dark drama and irreverent hilarity that audiences have come to love.
The trailer also provides a glimpse at a few new locations that will be cameoing, including Glendale’s Chariot Inn at 1118 E. Colorado St., which plays the Windbreaker Motel where Detective Ana Perez (Diana-Maria Riva) and Officer Nick Prager (Brandon Scott) discover a body. The oft-filmed Peace Awareness Labyrinth & Gardens at 3500 W. Adams Blvd. in Jefferson Park also pops up as the location of Steve Wood’s (James Marsden) funeral. And the parking lot at White Point Beach in San Pedro is where Jen and Judy share a humourous encounter with their neighbor Jeff (Marc Evan Jackson).
Jen’s house, though, is sure to remain a fan favorite!