Grab a group of your closest friends and hunker down with the trials and tribulations of the Sweet Magnolias. No margarita goes unpoured when it comes to lifelong friends Maddie (JoAnna Garcia Swisher), Dana Sue (Brooke Elliott) and Helen (Heather Headley), so make sure to venture down the picturesque streets of Serenity and find your people. Not to mention, if you thought Season 1 of Netflix’s breakout hit was a tad bit juicy, just wait until you see what’s in store for residents of our favorite small southern town. Season 2 of Sweet Magnolias returned this past February– picking up right where we left off– smack dab in the middle of the aftermath of Kyle’s car accident and the turmoil inside that has led up to this boiling point.
Logan Allen, the extremely talented 17-year-old actor who has undoubtedly wiggled his way into the hearts of audiences across the globe as the compassionate and quirky Kyle Townsend, has reprised his role in the highly anticipated second season. Now, don’t get too excited– Allen is ditching (at least for now) the innocent Townsend charm and theatrics to delve into the more complex side of Kyle.
Despite Kyle’s turbulent journey in the latest installment of the series, Allen has quickly emerged as Hollywood’s one-to-watch, and has cultivated this dynamic character both on/off screen. You root for him, you cry for him, you want to shake him a little bit and slap him upside the head. But overall, you feel for him. No small feat for any actor in Allen’s situation. But he executes the task with ease.
Fandomize recently got the chance to chat with Logan about Sweet Magnolias Season 2, the impact the pandemic has had on filming, and the future of Kyle Townsend. We discussed building relationships in 2022, and the importance of putting your phone down and just enjoying the company. Take a look…
MCKENZIE MORRELL: For those who haven’t seen Sweet Magnolias yet, could you tell us a little bit about your character, who is Kyle Townsend?
LOGAN ALLEN: Yeah! Sweet Magnolias is a show about relationships, friendships, family, community and how important that is. Kyle is Maddie Townsend’s youngest son. He’s presented with a lot of challenges pretty much like everybody else in Serenity; he is a kid that is very nice, very, very giving, he tries to make others happy, and almost does that to an extent that hurts himself. He doesn’t really focus on himself too much and obviously that becomes an issue, he doesn’t have that many people to go to either because everyone else on the show has their own issues and problems. In season 1 he finds a really good person in Noreen [Jamie Lynn Spears] and there’s a cool dynamic there, but in Season 2 he doesn’t have anybody. After the car crash, I’m not gonna say who’s in the car but obviously that has a big impact on what his emotions are, that guilt, all that stuff. Diving into Kyle again in season 2 is really fun because there was a whole other side to him. I’m sure when you watched you were like what the heck because the first four episodes are a totally different side of him. It was fun to dive into and explore.
MM: Do you think that relationship with Noreen, and that unlikely pairing between the two came as a shock to people in Serenity? Everyone had animosity towards her considering the circumstances with Bill– why do you think Kyle was drawn to her out of all the people he could have confided in?
LA: Because I think they’re both the outsiders, they’re almost the outlier in the equation; they don’t really have many people to go to. Noreen obviously is away from her family, she has no friends, she just came and worked at this office with Bill. She doesn’t have many people to go to and Kyle himself, he has friends but he wants someone that he can truly relate to. A family member. Someone close to him and he found that in Noreen and Noreen found that in him so there’s a really cool relationship there. I think what drew them together was the fact that they both related to not having many people to go to and they were happy to finally have a true friend in Serenity.
MM: That was definitely a surprising dynamic but how it unfolded was really nice to watch. You start out the show not liking Noreen and then after that dynamic unfolds you’re like, okay I’m kind of rooting for her despite the circumstances. From the start you’ve mentioned Kyle has been this vibrant kid who always has this big smile on his face, he has this positive attitude overall but as the series goes on especially at the end of season 1 into season 2 we definitely get to see a different side of Kyle and the audience ends up exploring this more complex, darker version of him. Was it challenging switching those gears from this happy go lucky kid to Kyle having actual troubles and problems and dealing with things internally?
LA: Yeah, 100%. You don’t really have an opportunity to come back and play a character a second time, so that’s just exciting in itself, but every time you do come back for a character there’s always something new to explore and with Kyle that was this dark, I don’t want to say nasty, but this mean side to him that was fueled by that anger and guilt of what happened with the car crash, and also embarrassment too. That was super embarrassing for him and it kind of all built up at once and even some of the issues that happened in season 1 it all built up as well into that one moment. It was really fun, I don’t know if it was necessarily challenging but it was definitely new to jump into a character that you already explored but there’s more pieces to him and it was fun to kind of dive back into him there and play that side of him and to explore him. There’s still so much to that character, that hopefully we get a season 3 and I can dive into as well and explore more but he’s so much fun to play, he goes through so much and like you said, he’s this nice, giving, caring kid that I think really holds a lot of relationships and friendships together– so it’s a blast.
MM: Definitely. And how did you connect with that character, what’s the biggest life lesson Kyle or any of the characters on the show have given you while working on the show?
LA: I can relate to him in a few different ways. Number one, he’s an actor. In season 1 he did that play which was really cool because I played a character inside of a character. It was strange, so that was really fun, to play with Kyle in that sense. Another thing I can relate to is definitely being the middle child, the challenge that comes with that. There’s a challenge that comes with being every kid: the youngest kid, the oldest kid, the only kid, and then the middle child, and obviously only a certain amount of people get to experience that. I did as well so it was really fun to see myself in him in a lot of ways and it made it easier for me to dive into and experience his emotions and relate to those situations, which made the whole experience so much easier for me. But I think being able to relate to the character was very important and it made it easier for me to play out the character and bring him on screen.
MM: Obviously the relatability to your character is kind of something that transforms on the screen for everybody watching. There’s somebody that you can really connect with or find some of yourself in, so you being able to find that within your characters is good because it obviously helps the portrayal and for the audience to connect with you. The show has consistently been in the top 10 or better yet, the top 5 on the US Today list on Netflix. I know this is kind of a loaded question but why do you believe this show has been so successful? Obviously there was a gap between season 1 and 2 so everybody waited a while for it but it’s still coming out on top. What’s the secret sauce, what do you think?
LA: I think it all starts with the cast and crew. Before even the show drops. What I love so much about this set and I say this all the time but it’s true, there’s this family dynamic with this show and like I said, it’s with the crew too, everybody behind the camera. We all get along so well, and every day on set is so much fun because of that, we’ve built this family dynamic so its so easy to get through the day and so easy to work and I think that obviously then that chemistry builds and then you see that on screen. Some of my favorite scenes to watch are the margarita nights with Helen, Maddie, and Dana Sue, just that chemistry and that bond between those three ladies, that’s real. I think that’s really important to have that chemistry in real life because it’s super easy to translate it onto screen. I think that’s what really makes this show so special is because it’s built around friendship, family and relationships and that’s what we really have in real life so that just makes it easier for us. It translates really well because that’s what the show is built on and it’s so much fun. Seriously, we have the best cast and crew. Everybody is so nice, everybody gets along and you don’t have that with every set. You can get the best actors in the world, put them in a movie or show but if they don’t have good chemistry or don’t get along it’s not gonna be good at all, and that’s what’s so great, everybody has great chemistry, everybody gets along and you really see that in the show.
MM: Of course. As you mentioned, the Sweet Magnolias have their margarita night, they really come together, pour it out to kind of decompress in their lives, obviously you’re not old enough to partake in such activities but do you have an equivalent kind of tradition or way to kind of reconnect with your friends to check in and kind of help each other out if you’re going through some rough times?
LA: Yeah, connecting with people is very important especially throughout the pandemic, everybody has their own issues they’re not as outgoing as usual you know what I mean? They’re not usually expressive with their emotions like everybody was before the pandemic because they’re just sitting in their house so you can easily just hide those emotions. What I did was try to reach out to as many people as I can, keep in touch with everybody and I learned that early on, to make sure to keep in touch with everyone because a friendship or a relationship can be gone just like that. You have to make sure you’re keeping that bond strong and that’s something that I really learned and obviously a lot of people went through tough times. We don’t really all get together but I definitely do reach out and try to hang out with as many people as possible so I can keep that bond strong. A lot of people are going through some tough times so it’s always fun to reconnect and help them out.
MM: Yeah, of course. Always finding a way to reconnect, you know you have those friends that you don’t talk to for a while but every time you check in or every time you call them they’re showing up at your doorstep, so it’s good to keep those going, and then obviously everyone has been through a lot in the last two years with this pandemic still going on. The show is just such a breath of fresh air with just community and good values at the core despite people going through real life turbulent times. How was it going through this process during the pandemic and having your on screen parents, your on screen brother, that kind of stuff being supportive and having that chemistry kind of shine through knowing that everybody’s kind of going through these tough times?
LA: Yeah, it really helped us. We filmed this the summer of 2021 so that’s when everybody was finally starting to get going again and it was so fun for us to finally get to do something again. That was my first job ever in COVID so to be on this set again it was such a breath of fresh air. For us, it was great because we all got to get together again and it was like a little family reunion and we just had fun for 5 months. For everybody else watching, when Season 1 dropped, it dropped in May of 2020, so that’s when it first started. Everybody started quarantining 2 weeks before that, so Outer Banks dropped I think two months before, that was the big thing and then Sweet Magnolias came along and this was the show that brought people together, that reminded people how important friendship and relationships are which also really helped out people reaching out to other people and keeping those bonds strong. I think it was very important to have. I get DMs all the time, people saying it’s actually helped them rekindle relationships and reach out to people again and reach out to family members that they haven’t talked to in 10 to 15 years and be able to have that impact on somebody like that, it’s truly amazing — and me and the cast, we talk about that all the time, to know that we actually help people like that, it’s truly amazing. But yes, it is a show about community, family and friendship and I think that’s really important especially when season 1 dropped, but in season 2 as well, because I think people need to be reminded, you know what I mean? We finally started going out again, everything’s starting to go back to normal, it’s gonna start moving fast again, but we have to take a step back and be reminded of how important friendship and community are and that’s what season 2 does.
MM: We’re all buried in the zombies and the apocalypse and now we need to bring it back to real life and help a neighbor out and come together for a good cause. I admit, I was a little late to the Sweet Magnolias party but I successfully binge watched 2 seasons in a week so I’m very grateful to be able to have consumed it all at once versus having to wait in between. Do you recall the last show that you sat down and binge watched and couldn’t get enough of and wanted more kind of thing?
LA: I’m not proud of this at all but I binge watched Bloodhound, I think it’s a Korean show. I watched that all in one night and I know that sounds horrible but I was sitting there with my older brother and we were like: what do we want to watch? It was like 10 o’clock at night and I was like you know what I’ve been wanting to watch this show, it’s weird, I saw the trailer and I was like, this is crazy, we’ll just watch it. The show is great, but it wasn’t insanely good, we were just sitting down and we just started watching and we were just hanging out, but it was a really good job. Bloodhound’s fun. What I love about that show is midway through you think the show’s gonna end because it kind of comes to a stop and then it picks up 5 years later and you’re like: oh okay, what? So it was really fun. We had a good time. I watched Bloodhound all in one night and I’m not proud of it but we did.
MM: Sometimes you need a show where you can do that where you just sit down and you get a bunch of snacks and just sit there and escape for a little while. If you could throw yourself in any show for a day, what show would you throw yourself into?
LA: That’s a good question. You know, it’s funny, I wanna say Stranger Things, but I wanna be in Hawkins.
MM: You wanna live in that world for a day?
LA: Right. They put my character in California, I wanna be in California, I wanna be in Hawkins. Being in Hawkins would be really cool. Funny story about that is, you know when you watch a TV show and you’re like: man I wanna be in that town, that community, it feels safe. It’s funny because when you’re filming that you don’t really understand that, obviously without the music, without cinematography you’re just acting it out, so you’re trying to bring that to life, but one of my favorite parts about being an actor is when your movie or show comes out, it’s to see the vibe that the show gives off because you don’t really feel that vibe when you’re making the show, you know what I mean? Serenity? Oh my gosh, the way it came to life on screen is so weird for me and the cast, ‘cause we’re like: man, you wanna live there but we did, so it’s really weird, but that’s just a fun little fact. We don’t really know what that vibe is gonna be like until it comes on the screen and it’s just so cool.
MM: Right, I know, and everybody’s wishing they were in serenity these days I think. You’re based in Florida and you live on a farm. Is that correct?
LA: Yes ma’am.
MM: Wonderful, that’s super cool. Do you think being raised in an environment like the one that you grew up in helped tapping into that southern charm that the show brings and is known for, kind of learning the value of hard work responsibility all of that versus coming from like, a fast paced, LA type scene.
LA: What’s really nice is my dad’s side is the southern side and my mom’s side is very city, so it’s really easy for me to jump from one to the other which I think is very important and like you said, helps me out with roles too. So yes, I think it was easy to dive into it. I was raised in a small town, not as small as Serenity but a smaller town you know? My dad sees people that he grew up with. And that kind of stuck so it was definitely a lot easier to dive into the character in that sense for sure, and then also being on a farm is really nice because during the pandemic when you’re in quarantine, we have all this land to run around on so we’re not just quarantined in one little house which was nice. There’s a lot of advantages when it comes to Sweet Magnolias because it definitely helped that southern charm that I was really familiar with.
MM: Wonderful, and do you guys have horses? What kind of animals do you guys have on the farm?
LA: You know what’s funny, I used to do 4-H, which is where you show animals at the fair whenever the fair comes around, so we used to have everything like chickens, goats, sheep, it was like a literal farm because we did 4-H, but I think right now we just have cows and horses because we had to take a step back, relax, take a little bit of a deep breath, ‘cause obviously having that many animals is way too crazy. We’re definitely enjoying the cows and horses right now and they’re amazing, it’s so much fun just to go for a nice ride. It’s great.
MM: That’s awesome. Definitely not something that normal teenagers get to do when they’re not on TV and being a star so that’s definitely a great experience. How have the fan interactions been? Do you get recognized in public, school, do people reach out to you in social media, the feedback overall good? Tell me any crazy stories you’ve got.
LA: It’s great, I love meeting people all the time. I do get recognized in public. It’s weird though, sometimes people are scared to come up to you so they’ll kind of just stalk you around the store you know what I mean? ‘Cause they don’t wanna come up and say hi even though they’re the person who’s been following me for six aisles and I’m like: oh whatever, I’ll go up to them and say hi. But it’s kind of weird, sometimes people are a little scared so if anyone is reading this, if you see me in public come say hi don’t follow me around, it’s kind of creepy. But I love meeting people in real life and then hearing their story about why they love the show. Some people say it really really helped with depression and when it went to dark times with the pandemic which is just incredible and I’m glad we were able to have that impact on somebody. And then obviously through social media, the feedback’s been amazing, everyone’s been loving the show and that’s what I love to hear, just being number one on Netflix is still very surreal to me, I don’t know if that’s actually clicked with me yet, but that’s insane, and we were number one for a whole week and that was a crazy experience. The DM’s and everything is so nice and I love talking to people and seeing their input on the show, why they like it so I can have that in the back of my mind if we make a season 3. It’s always fun to talk to them and interact with the fans for sure.
MM: Yeah, and definitely the show is very generational, obviously on screen you have these different generations, and it translates to the audience as well. My sister watches the show, I watch the show, my mom watches the show, so it’s something where you really could sit down and at any age you could watch this and find yourself or find some sort of calm in it no matter what age you are. I definitely think that translates and that’s a testament to you guys and that chemistry you portray on the screen.
LA: I totally agree, I think that’s another factor that comes into why the show’s so successful. Everybody can relate to at least one character, as well. You have the teenagers, you have the moms, and then you have the grandparents so everyone can relate to some character in some way, they all have different backgrounds, it’s definitely really amazing. The writers have done such a good job, thank you for giving us credit but really that goes to the writers, the writers have done such a good job. It’s incredible. Sheryl [J. Anderson] and the writer’s room, they do such a great job and bringing that to life, that’s our job, but obviously we couldn’t do it without the words on the paper. It’s incredible and I think definitely the characters and how relatable they are is definitely factored into how successful the show is.
MM: No doubt. And a hard question coming your way, I like to add my signature question to all of my interviews, are you ready for it?
LA: Let’s do it.
MM: Alright. So now, if you were to construct a donut based on your character’s personality, what kind of donut would it be and what toppings would be on it?
LA: Oh my gosh, I’ve got to think about this one for a second. Oh man…
MM: There’s no limit, we’ve had some crazy concoctions, some practical concoctions, there’s really no limit to what you can do.
LA: Okay. I think he would go for a Shakespeare style so maybe some Shakespearean art around it with some frosting. I think he would have some jelly in the middle, one hundred percent, that’s a Kyle thing. He would want the colorful sprinkles I think, that definitely on top, man I’m trying to think of what else. Yeah. I think the jelly, the sprinkles, and the Shakespeare frosting on the outside, I think that’s a Kyle donut right there.
MM: That’s definitely a Kyle donut. And now, what three emojis do you think Kyle overuses in his text messages to friends and family?
LA: The drama guys, I think, is definitely one of them. Oh man, let’s see, I think maybe the laughing emoji. Definitely the laughing emoji and I think the thumbs up. You know what? I think he’d put the thumbs up every once in a while at the end of his text messages, I think that’s what he’d do. I’m trying to think back because I remember we saw Kyle send a couple of texts in season 1 and season 2 and I don’t think he used any emojis. He might not be an emoji person. I don’t know but if he was, I think we’d go with those three.
MM: It’s so weird though, to kind of watch the show knowing that in this day of 2022, how the teenagers obviously are more — I mean, I’m guilty of it, you’re tied to your phone and you’re on social media, you’re doing all this stuff, and really in Serenity, phones are not really predominant, it’s not something that these kids spend all their time on their phones and I think that’s just the small town charm of camaraderie, and doing things together, and activities, and being more outside, and it’s just really weird to see cause you kind of feel like you’re in the Twilight Zone since everybody in real life is just glued to their phone.
LA: You’re 100% right, I never actually thought about that until now and you’re 100% percent right. I think what it is is an old town, old fashioned kind of thing and I’m assuming that the two moms Dana Sue and Maddie, I think that they definitely have rules in the house like: hey you get off your phone at like 8, probably one of those, but yeah it’s so funny you brought that up, I never thought about that. That’s funny.
MM: It’s just so weird. I was like huh, that is new. But now we see season 2 left us with many unanswered question we’ll kind of put this out when hopefully everybody’s seen the show at this point, but the biggest one for your character is that you know, Nellie has been forbidden to see Kyle due to Mary Vaughn’s vendetta against the Sweet Magnolias. We haven’t officially gotten word if Netflix will renew the show for season 3, but we’re hopeful obviously that this will take place. What do you hope to kind of see in the next installment of the show for your character? Where do you see this journey taking him?
LA: I think what I’m most excited for is the Maddie relationship with Mary Vaughn and I think that’s gonna affect Kyle a lot, and that’s why I’m ready to see it because obviously Maddie is gonna see that what Mary Vaughn is doing is taking a heavy toll on Kyle. They can’t make kyle happy, he’s always depressed all the time, he’ll probably start out being all sad again at the beginning, but what I’m excited is what Maddie is gonna do about it because I assume Maddie is gonna go off. I feel like Maddie, like every other mom, is obviously really, really defensive when it comes to her kids, and we’ve actually seen some of that fire with Maddie especially in season 2, that one scene with Bill, I think you know what i’m talking about, I was like: oh my god, that’s crazy! But rightfully so, I get that, but yeah she definitely has some fire in her so I’m excited to see what’s gonna come out of that with Mary Vaughn and obviously with Cal, too. We need to talk about what happened with Cal. That right there was insane and you think you know that character, but then obviously all the stuff starts coming out but then they cover it up really quick and he’s like: okay, no, let me pour my guts out to you, this is what happened, and then something else comes out and you’re like, whoa alright that’s interesting. I’m really excited to see what they’re gonna do with Cal and that side of things and obviously Ty too. I think Ty had one of the best story lines of season 2, I really do, and Carson did such a great job with that character, but I’m excited to see what’s gonna happen with him. I think he’s a junior in the show so he still has a senior year I believe, so what’s gonna happen? We’ll see what happens there. Is he still gonna be a big supporter of the baseball team? It’s gonna be fun.
MM: Definitely and obviously your two characters as siblings will be able to kind of explore that more since you had some turbulent times with the accident just prior to that stuff but it seems that towards the end you guys come together and are very supportive and that dynamic is gonna be reinstated and hopefully explored as we return. Hopefully you guys get a season 3!
LA: We’ll see, we’ll see. All the support too, everybody watching right now, thank you so much, it really helps. We were number one for a week, so hopefully everybody keeps watching it. Tell your friends and your friend’s family and their family friends about the show and hopefully we’ll get a season 3.
MM: Yeah, and right now during this interview, I think you guys are top 3, you’re number 3, so that should be foreshadowing of you guys getting a season 3. Like you mentioned earlier in our conversation, you also have an appearance in the upcoming season of Stranger Things which is super exciting. I can totally see you in that world.. I heard that you play a bully which is the opposite of Kyle Townsend, anything you can kind of tease for that stint on Stranger Things coming up?
LA: Yeah, yesterday morning they announced the release date and I think it’s gonna be May 25th. There’s two volumes which are interesting. It’ll be fun. I’m only in a few episodes, and I’ve had this role for like 2 and half years– it was crazy, and COVID hit, messed everything up, and then they delayed filming, and then they filmed our thing literally last. I was there the day it wrapped which is crazy to be able to wrap with the whole cast. It’s crazy. It was so much fun obviously playing a bully– in California in the 80s, being able to dress up — I have so many pictures it’s crazy — they had me in short shorts, and my mom and dad who grew up in the 80s were like: this is so nostalgic. They were like, I had that jacket, I had those shoes, and it was so weird for them but it was really cool to kind of dive into that world and meet the Duffer brothers, get to work with them, and meet Millie Bobby Brown, and obviously hang out with some of the other cast. I don’t know if I can say who they are yet, but it was so much fun, and I had such a great time, and it was such a fun experience. We filmed that out in Albuquerque, New Mexico so it was different. Usually I film everything in Atlanta so going pretty much across the country to a place where there’s nothing to do… There is nothing to do out there at all. I’m from Orlando, we have theme parks and we have beaches 30 minutes away…
MM: Excitement all around right?
LA: Yeah, I think the biggest attraction there was a rattlesnake museum. I was like cool, great this’ll be fun, but it was cool, we went hiking and stuff. It was a blast and we filmed a lot. So it was cool.
MM: That’s amazing. As we wind down, anything else you’d like to add for the fans, the audience, a final push for Sweet Magnolias.
LA: Keep supporting the show. We love it. We see all you guys, we love you guys, seriously we really appreciate all the love and support. Hopefully we’ll get a season 3, we’ll see what happens, I hope you guys enjoy season 2, as well. I don’t know about your opinion, but I think season 2 is better than season 1, I don’t know why, I just think the ball really started moving a little bit and it was crazy. But anyway, so yeah guys, thank you so much for all the love and support, seriously and make sure you guys get ready for Stranger Things! If you guys can follow me on my social media @itsloganallen is my at from there and I post behind the scenes and all kinds of stuff and Anneliese [Judge], who plays Annie, is doing like a day by day, almost like a vlog thing she did when we shot season 2 on her TikTok so go check that out as well. It’s really cool.