Alice Wetterlund made headlines on Tuesday when she hopped on Twitter to criticize her former Silicon Valley co-star T.J. Miller. She described working with Miller as a “kind of a nightmare,” and went on to accuse the rest of the show’s male cast of enabling Miller to think his disruptive behavior was acceptable.
Wetterlund, who played engineer Carla Walton on the second and third seasons of Silicon Valley, also described the vibe on the set as “toxic and weird,” and had she not been starting out, she said she would not have tolerated Miller’s antics.
Here’s what you need to know about Wetterlund:
1. She Worked As a Stand-Up Comedian In the Late 2000s
Wetterlund hails from Minnesota, and grew up idolizing comedians like Larry Sanders, Bill Hicks, and Roseanne Barr. “My dad forced me to watch SCTV growing up, so Eugene Levy was a huge part of my childhood,” she told Serial Optimist.
“We also watched The Simpsons and Roseanne and The Larry Sanders Show as a family, so I feel like I had a really great comedy education,” she added. “My stepdad and his brother are both really funny and it was my uncle that first introduced me to Neil Hamburger and Bill Hicks, which is how I started listening to stand up. All of us basically try to make my mom laugh all the time which isn’t easy, because she doesn’t even like The Simpsons.”
Wetterlund moved to New York in 1999 to attend Cooper Union, and gave her first performance at the college’s Wollman Auditorium. She was in a sketch group where she did a July Garland impression. Wetterlund says that she didn’t know what she wanted to do throughout college, however, and it took her nearly a decade to figure out that stand-up comedy was the path for her. “I went to art school and then I just pretended to be an artist for five years after college,” she admitted.
Wetterlund started performing stand-up regularly in 2008. “When I began performing comedy, it was so obvious to me that it was what I was meant to do,” she said. “That I was mad at myself for not getting into it earlier, but then I convinced myself that I wouldn’t have been ready at any other time, which may be true.”
2. She Landed Her Breakout Role On the MTV Sketch Show ‘Girls Code’
Wetterlund’s big break came when she was cast as one of the ensemble players on the MTV series Girl Code. “MTV knew of me from seeing me in New York and they asked me to put together an audition tape,” she told Serial Optimist.
“I love Girl Code, all the behind-the-scenes people are so smart and funny, not to mention the cast, and I just love being a part of it.” The series premiered in 2013, and several of the sketches, particularly “Culture Culture Probiotics,” which parodies TV commercials, have raised Wetterlund’s comedy profile.
Since joining Girls Code, Wetterlund has appeared in several other televisions shows and films. She is a regular cast member on the TBS series People of Earth, and has had minor roles on Comedy Central’s @Midnight and the aforementioned Silicon Valley for HBO.
Wetterlund’s notable films roles include The Interview, where she played Alice, and Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates, where she plays Terry, the older cousin of the main characters. Wetterlund gained critical praise as Terry, with the Los Angeles Times calling her the film’s “comedic high point.”
3. She Was Previously Married to Writer & Producer Andy Haynes
Wetterlund married comedy writer and producer Andy Haynes in 2013. In an interview with The Cut, Wetterlund said that their wedding was the wildest she had ever been to. “My wildest wedding date? My ex-husband, who I married at my wedding,” she said. “We got super drunk and we stole a golf cart and we drove out to the desert — we were in Palm Springs — and he was so high that he wanted to go back. We were in the middle of the desert, and it was beautiful.” They split shortly after.
Despite their divorce, Wetterlund says that she and Haynes are still good friends. She told The Cut that she has “no regrets,” with the exception of the wedding’s price tag. “It’s like a $40,000 hit-it-and-quit-it type of situation, where it’s like, All right, we didn’t maybe need to,” she admitted. “The marriage didn’t last, but we’re still friends.”
Haynes, who’s writing credits include the TV shows Vanoss Superhero School and Ground Floor, has since gone on to date actress Stevie Nelson. Wetterlund has been more secretive about her personal life, aside from tweeting that she was dating someone named “Kirk” last July. On Valentine’s Day, however, she posted a photo of her kissing a man named Garret Lang. It is unclear what their relationship is at the present.
4. She Makes a Point of Including Feminism In Her Comedy
Wetterlund has made of point of encouraging more women to become comedians. “I think the “female comedian” label is giving way ever so slowly to “comedian,” but there’s a lot to overcome,” she told Serial Optimist. “When you start out in stand up, it’s a lot of unfunny guys talking about really rape-y stuff onstage, and you have to sit through it and grin, basically, so you can do your 4 minutes.”
“The weird thing is, there are so many unfunny guys trying to do comedy, but every time a dude gets onstage he gets the benefit of the doubt,” she continues. “A woman gets onstage and there is a good portion of the audience that’s expecting period jokes or judging her appearance or thinking of the one time they saw an unfunny female stand up. It’s not something that one person can change, it’s a paradigm shift that’s simply going to take a long time.”
Wetterlund has spoken out against sexism and the unfair ways in which women are treated by the industry on Twitter. “Just a random reminder that I know one man personally who was falsely accused of rape. He’s fine. His career is fine,” she tweeted. “He’s actually doing really well. The dozens of women I know personally who have been assaulted and raped by men are not fine. They still suffer daily.”
5. She Said That She Felt ‘Bullied’ On the Set of ‘Silicon Valley’
Wetterlund was equally blunt when she turned her focus towards T.J. Miller and the rest of Silicon Valley‘s male cast. She responded to Miller’s sudden resurgence by tweeting out: “Yes! It is definitely time to rehabilitate T.J. Miller’s career! We can’t afford to lose talent at a time like this, we need more—not less—comedic hijinks such as checks notes calling in a fake bomb threat.”
She went on to say that Miller “was a bully and petulant brat” and that “pretty much everyone who had any power on that (almost all male) set, including the male cast members, enabled him and were complicit in his unprofessionalism.”
She added: “I’m pretty open about this, and I don’t know if other women on the show had a different experience than me, but it was kind of a nightmare.” Miller nor any of the cast members has responded to Wetterlund’s claims, but HBO has released a statement. It as as follows:
While this is the first time we have heard Alice Wetterlund comment on her experiences on Silicon Valley, we are disappointed to learn of her concerns. HBO and the producers have always taken very seriously our responsibility to create a welcoming and congenial environment for everyone who works on the show.