Spoiler alert! Contains important plot details about the ending of “Girls5Eva” Season 2.
Drew and Jonathan Scott are taking a scented hammer to their squeaky-clean image.
The home-renovation moguls, best known as HGTV’s “Property Brothers,” make a strangely silly cameo in the Season 2 finale of “Girls5Eva” (now streaming on Peacock), the Tina Fey-produced sitcom about a ’90s girl group launching a comeback.
At the start of the season, the girls – Dawn (Sara Bareilles), Wickie (Reneé Elise Goldsberry), Gloria (Paula Pell) and Summer (Busy Philipps) – land a record deal with Property Records, the identical twins’ fictional label. They’re asked to write and record an album in six weeks to coincide with the release of the brothers’ new line of scented hammers, which will then be sold as merchandise at their concerts.
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But Girls5Eva gets unwelcome news in the season finale, when they learn the label has not selected them to open for hit group Collab on tour.
“Life isn’t a wish machine. You don’t always get to do the exact thing you’re best at,” Drew tells the singers on a Zoom call, before showing them a “fight reel” video of him ruthlessly punching and kicking stuntmen in a backyard.
“Girls5Eva” creator Meredith Scardino is a longtime fan of “Property Brothers,” which is briefly referenced in the third episode of Season 1 as Dawn watches them on TV. She wanted to satirize celebrity brand expansion (“Rihanna’s getting into the mattress space,” an A&R representative tells the girls), and the Scotts seemed like a natural fit for a record label, given their real-life side gig making country music.
“The dream was always to get them to do a cameo and I was so happy when they said they would,” Scardino says. “Jonathan told me part of the reason they said ‘yes’ was someone had played him ‘Dawn’s Song of Fears’ from Season 1. He heard it separate from the show, but then they watched and were on board.”
The writers lovingly send up “Property Brothers” segments: The Scotts offer design tips for a “dream she shed” (the female equivalent of a man cave), and travel to Greece to renovate “everything” because it’s just “so old.”
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But Drew’s “fight reel” was actually no joke: After the Scotts agreed to appear on “Girls5Eva,” they emailed a list of their other skills and talents for the writers to build their cameo. One folder, labeled “stage combat,” contained Drew’s high-kicking clip with stuntman Daniel Locicero.
“We were like, ‘What? This is the most unexpected treasure I’ve ever seen,'” Scardino recalls. “I learned on set that Jonathan and Drew were martial-arts experts from a young age, so this is an interest of theirs. We literally just licensed his video (to include in the episode). Drew told me they shot it in a couple hours in a backyard one morning, and it fit in with the story of, ‘Hey, your passions aren’t necessarily what will make you money.’ ”
Drew also put his savage moves to good use during shooting. After the Scotts tell Girls5Eva they didn’t get the tour, Gloria bursts into a newly renovated kitchen where the siblings are filming and challenges Drew to a duel. The two exchange punches and pelt each other with oranges and books, before Gloria slams Drew to the ground.
“Kill him. Do it, please,” Jonathan desperately begs Gloria.
“It’s always fun to invent some behind-the-scenes craziness of people you usually only see one way,” Scardino says of Jonathan’s bloodthirsty plea. As for the fight itself, “Paula and Drew were just so game. We did have stunt doubles, but honestly, the two of them wanted to do everything.”
The episode ends with Girls5Eva choosing to fund their own tour after one of their songs goes viral. Drew apologizes to the group and thanks Gloria for the skirmish. (“It’s the only time I feel anything anymore.”)
Looking ahead to a potential Season 3, “I have some ideas, but I try not to get too married to them,” Scardino says. “I never in a million years could have imagined this season would involve a fight between Gloria and a Property Brother.”