Bless This Mess premiered on April 16, 2019: a month later, it had already proved so successful ABC renewed the series for a second season. The show follows newlyweds Rio and Mike as they leave the stresses and strains of the Big Apple for a small backwater in rural Nebraska. As it turns out, the simple life is not quite so simple as it seems… If you enjoyed the first season, you’re in luck. The 2nd season is back, and it’s set to be even bigger and better than the first. Get yourself ready with who’s who guide to the cast.
Dax Shephard as Mike
Playing Mike, a former music journalist who leaves New York with his new wife Rio after inheriting a farmhouse in Nebraska, is Dax Shepherd, a 44-year-old actor who got his first taste of the acting bug when he trained at The Groundlings Theater for improv and sketch comedy during his time at UCLA. After leaving university, Shephard began working on Punk’d with Ashton Kutcher, but found it difficult to secure serious acting gigs. After 10 years of auditioning, he finally got his breakthrough in the comedy Without a Paddle alongside Seth Green and Matthew Lillard. Since then, he’s enjoyed success in both TV and film, with notable highlights including a 5-year run as Crosby Braverman in Parenthood, Luke Matthews in The Ranch, and an appearance alongside Bradley Cooper in 2012’s feature film, Hit and Run (which he also co-directed, wrote and produced). On the home front, Shephard has been married to actress Kristen Bell since 2013, after the couple met at the birthday party of actor and singer Michael Rosenbaum. The couple currently has 2 children; their first daughter was born in March 2013, and their 2nd in December 2014.
Lake Bell as Rio
Lake Bell plays Mike’s new wife Rio, a former therapist from New York. Bell began acting while studying at Rose Bruford College in London, performing in numerous plays such as The Seagull, The Children’s Hour, Six Degrees of Separation, Light Shining in Buckinghamshire and The Pentecost. The actress made her move into film in 2002 with the role of Sara Marnikov in Speakeasy. That same year, she made her TV debut on ER as Jody Holmes. Since then, she’s starred in everything from Boston Legal (2004—2006), Surface (2005—2006), How to Make It in America (2010—2011) and Children’s Hospital (2008—2016) on TV, to Over Her Dead Body (2008), What Happens in Vegas (2008), It’s Complicated (2009), No Strings Attached (2011), Million Dollar Arm (2014), No Escape (2015), The Secret Life of Pets (2016), and Home Again (2017) on film. As well as acting, Bell has been writing and directing since 2010, and is, in fact, the co-creator and co-writer on May God Bless this Mess.
JT Neal as Jacob
JT Neal began acting at the age of just 12 years; a few years later enrolled in Dallas’ Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. So keen was Neal to pursue his dreams that he drove over 100 miles each day to reach the school. Since booking his first job as Disney XD’s Lab Rats, Neal’s rise up the ranks has been stellar. As well as playing a supporting role in Netflix’s Sierra Burgess Is a Loser, he’s starred opposite Cara Delevingne and Jaden Smith in the romantic feature Life in a Year. When he’s not acting, Neal is active in the work of the nonprofit, Share a Meal. As his ABC bio notes, he began working with the charity two years ago and has volunteered with them on a weekly basis ever since.
Pam Grier as Constance
Pam Grier plays Constance, the town’s local sheriff and owner of “Connie’s”. Grier started her career in the 1970s in such features as The Big Bird Cage, Coffy, Foxy Brown, and Sheba, Baby. Since then, she’s become best known for her work in the 1997 Quentin Tarantino film Jackie Brown (for which she received a Satellite Award and a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress), and as the character of “Kit” Porter on the Showtime television series The L Word. In the 1970s, she famously became involved with the comedian Richard Pryor, but the relationship became strained after Pryor relapsed into drug addiction after 6 months of sobriety. The couple eventually parted ways after Pryor became engaged to another woman while still dating Grier.
Ed Begley Jr as Rudy
Tacking the part of Rudolph “Rudy” Longfellow is legendary actor Ed Begley Jr, the son of another Hollywood icon, Ed Begley Sr. Over the course of almost 50 years in the industry, Ed Begley Jr. Begley has starred in numerous films and TV shows, including An Officer and a Gentleman (1982), This Is Spinal Tap (1984), The Accidental Tourist (1988), She-Devil (1989), The Pagemaster (1994), Batman Forever (1995), Auto Focus (2002), Pineapple Express (2008), What’s Your Number? (2011), Ghostbusters (2016) and CHiPS (2017). Away from acting, Begley is a committed environmentalist and has written several books on sustainability, including Living Like Ed: A Guide to the Eco-Friendly Life (2008) and Ed Begley Jr.’s Guide to Sustainable Living: Learning to Conserve Resources and Manage an Eco-Conscious Life (2009)
David Koechner as Beau Bowman
As Beau Bowman, we have David Koechner, an actor best known as Champ Kind in Anchorman and Todd Packer in The Office. As his ABC bio notes, Koechner got his first break in Saturday Night Light, where he proved both his acting chops and innate funny bone. Since then, he’s starred in over 170 feature films and TV shows (including Waiting, Out Cold, Talladega Nights, Get Smart, Extract, Thank You for Smoking, A Haunted House, Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse) and has continued to hone his comedy skills by performing live stand-up across the country.
Lennon Parham as Kay Bowman
Taking the role of Kay Bowman is Lennon Parham, an actress and improvisational comedian best known for NBC’s Best Friends Forever and USA Network’s Playing House. She’s also made appearances in Veep, Parks and Recreation, Comedy Bang! Bang!, Bad Judge, Arrested Development, Review and Mad Men.