There's a delightful flintiness about Debra Jo Rupp.
As Vicky in ABC's "Better With You," she tells her husband how she takes their "no talking after 9 p.m." policy seriously and ignores him. As Kitty on "That '70s Show," she alone stood up to her cranky husband.
Rupp comes by that flintiness naturally as a self-reliant New Englander, and she seasons it with humor, which is why her characters are so much fun.
Though she has a house, "the house 'That '70s Show' built" in the Berkshire hills of Massachusetts, she was talking from Los Angeles before heading to work.
"I am renting a house," Rupp says. "It goes against every piece of my being to pay rent."
Rupp has switched coasts a couple of times.
"I came out to L.A. when I turned 40, and that is so late for an actress," Rupp says. "I did really well right off the bat. I was incredibly, incredibly lucky."
She worked very steadily, but after eight seasons as Kitty, Rupp longed to be back onstage. For four years, she lived in the Berkshires and Manhattan.
"I did a ton of theater, and I had a great, great time," she says. "I love the people. I love the people that work in theater. It's a different environment -- people really, really working for a common thing."
Despite how much TV Rupp has done, she says she has no sense of how "Better With You" will do. She praises the cast, many of whom she has befriended.
"I never thought 'That '70s Show' would go," she says. "I passed on that show three times because it was called 'Teenage Wasteland.' Seriously, why would I want to be on that? Seriously! I am the absolutely worst judge. I did not think this would be picked up."
Celebrity Scoop: Debra Jo Rupp
Debra Jo Rupp
We've upgraded our reader commenting system. Learn more about the new features.
Los Angeles Times welcomes civil dialogue about our stories; you must register with the site to participate. We filter comments for language and adherence to our Terms of Service, but not for factual accuracy. By commenting, you agree to these legal terms. Please flag inappropriate comments.
Having technical problems? Check here for guidance.