One of the funniest standout stars of the 2012 fall TV season has been Toks Olagundoye, a Nigerian-born actress who plays the wife of an alien leader in ABC's charming new sitcom "The Neighbors" (Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m.).
In "The Neighbors," all of the Zabvronians living in self-imposed exile inside their gated New Jersey community are named after professional athletes. Olagundoye's character, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, is married to Larry Bird (Simon Templeman) and they have two sons: Reggie Jackson (Tim Jo) and Dick Butkus (Ian Patrick). The Zabvronians are forced to mingle with humans for the first time when a New Jersey family moves into their subdivision. The humans and the aliens (primarily the Bird-Kersee family) both learn from each other's cultures.
We recently spoke with Olagundoye by phone. Below are excerpts from that conversation.