I am Teal Sherer, actress, disability advocate, and rolling person you may recognize from Felicia Day's "The Guild." AMA (except whether or not my pussy works).

I’ve also done commercials, an HBO movie with Kenneth Branagh where I acted and served as his personal advisor, and I’m currently the creator and star of the award-winning online comedy series My Gimpy Life. We’re raising funds now to make more episodes: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1993187916/my-gimpy-life-season-two

Hey everyone. Thanks so much for joining me for my first ever AMA. Yay!!!! I definitely plan to do more in the future. In the meantime, you can find me on Twitter, the My Gimpy Life FB page, etc.. if you have any other questions.
xo Teal

Comments: 159 • Responses: 50  • Date: 

shellepenn42 karma

Well, damn.. that was my question.

TealSherer25 karma

haha. That’s actually an inside joke, based on a real event, which you can watch in the third episode of My Gimpy Life.

Hirokomons12 karma

Which is your funniest memory about the Guild? The Guild is where I first saw you and I absolutely adored your character, your acting was really great!

TealSherer16 karma

If you watch the S3 behind the scenes there is this great moment when we are filming and a bug attacks Wil Wheaton and he freaks out. I was so in character as Venom that you see me just rolling my eyes at him. I think the clip may be on YouTube. Trying to find it....

TealSherer18 karma

haha, so glad you found it. I look like such a bitch.

Rob_Saget10 karma

Would love to have you on an episode of my podcast to nerd out about games, tv, etc. Can we make this happen? P.S. We've had Alison Haislip and Boyan Radakovich on so we aren't just some regular neck-beards hanging in a basement. We're regular neck-beards hanging in a basement with connections.

TealSherer10 karma

Of course! I'd love to. Email me at [email protected]

w13rdo9 karma

Enjoyed MGL. You have scripts written for Season 2? Are there any topics you'll be touching on that we should be on the lookout for? I'd never considered how difficult navigating a restaurant would be in a wheelchair before having seen that episode. It just hadn't occurred to me. And I appreciate that a comedy series was able to bring that to my attention in a memorable way.

TealSherer8 karma

No, scripts have not been written yet. As for storylines, we’ll probably take a look at what “Teal” does when acting is slow, we’ll definitely be getting to know Brian (Daryl Crittenden) better, and likely see some other returning faces.

drinkola9 karma

No question, just a comment to say I love what you do! My Gimpy Life is hilarious, and I hope you are able to continue the series!

TealSherer8 karma

Thank you. Our Kickstarter is doing well and it looks like we'll be making more episodes.

IguanaGrrl8 karma

Hiya Teal! I'm a fan of yours and a proud supporter of your Kickstarter. :) I grew up with a blind father, so I've always looked up to those who overcome handicaps while aiming for their life's goals. :)

I've also recently caught up with the first season of 'Push Girls' from Sundance channel and I was curious if you have seen that show and what your thoughts are on how they portray the life of a paraplegic/quad?

Also, obviously you're very independent, but what would you say is your biggest challenge that you have conquered despite/because of your handicap?

TealSherer9 karma

Hi! I actually know all of the Push Girls and am really happy with their success. I'm honestly not a fan of reality television (well, besides The Voice) so I've only seen little pieces of the show so can't really comment to that. Curious what your thoughts are though. I think my biggest challenge I've conquered is a mental one. For a while I was really ashamed and embarrassed of my disability. Once I learned to embrace it and be proud of who I was, life got a lot better for me.

Dadbert975 karma

It seems to me that Push Girls has fallen into the "reality" trap where the directors turn the "cast" into characters and manufacture situations that they think would make "interesting TV." Somebody has to be the nice one, somebody has to be the beyotch, etc. - regardless of whether they're that way as people or not. Chelsie Hill seems to have been getting flack from people after this week's ep, even though publicity pix from this week show her and Auti arm-in-arm.

TealSherer3 karma

I couldn't agree more with you.

IguanaGrrl4 karma

Ironically, an audition I had for The Voice makes me hate that show now. :P

I really enjoyed the first season (It's on Netflix for anyone reading who is curious!) and I need to get on top of catching up with season 2.

I think that the show has a lot of unique perspectives on every day life, ones that your common able-body might not understand unless it was brought to their attention - much like you do with MGL. While it is very much a reality TV show and parts of it are over-sensationalized, I think that it is definitely a quality show. :)

I'm very glad that you were able to get past those mental barriers. Our minds really are our best friend and our worst enemy.

Very much looking forward to Season 2 of MGL, thank you for being hilarious and smart and amazing! :D

TealSherer7 karma

oh no, hate to hear you had a bad experience auditioning for The Voice. So curious what happened... But glad to hear that you think that about Push Girls. Thanks so much for your kind words.

IguanaGrrl3 karma

When I auditioned for Season 2 at the cattle call in Burbank, it was the last day of auditions... so they were being understandably quite picky (only 4 people went through to second auditions from the 1000 that went before my group).

The part that bothered me, though, is that they were selecting people not because of their vocal talents, but because of how their voice didn't match with their appearance. They were very much playing the reality show marketability game, and because of that, the actual vocal talent of the show is far inferior to what they would have if they followed the genuine impression of the show and judged based solely on the voice. shrug

Anyway, thanks for being so friendly! :D It always means a lot when my YouTube idols are approachable. :D

TealSherer5 karma

That's actually one of the main things I hate about reality shows, they're not really "reality" shows. They're so heavily produced that they might as well be scripted. I totally agree with Dadbert 97 comment below

"It seems to me that Push Girls has fallen into the "reality" trap where the directors turn the "cast" into characters and manufacture situations that they think would make "interesting TV." Somebody has to be the nice one, somebody has to be the beyotch, etc. - regardless of whether they're that way as people or not. Chelsie Hill seems to have been getting flack from people after this week's ep, even though publicity pix from this week show her and Auti arm-in-arm."

ChuckRagansBeard6 karma

You are awesome! My Gimpy Life is absolutely brilliant in highlighting the extra shit you have to go through but what have been the most surprising issues that you have/currently face as a wheel-chair bound actress in Los Angeles?

TealSherer14 karma

Thank you. I think some of the most surprising issues, which we touched on in season one, are that a lot of casting offices aren't wheelchair accessible. It's also frustrating that I rarely get seen for roles that aren't disability specific. There's no reason I can't play the teacher, the best friend, the computer tech, etc..

MrsPotatoehead6 karma

How'd you get the role of Venom on the Guild? And is Stupid Tall Hot Girl a good kisser?

P.S. Yay for Gimpy Life Season 2 - I donated!

TealSherer16 karma

Felicia wrote the part of Venom for me. Michele Boyd is an amazing kisser. She has really soft lips.

yougotmagiclegs5 karma

How do you feel about the phrase "confined to a wheelchair?"

TealSherer10 karma

I don't care for it. It sounds like someone is literally chained to their wheelchair. I'm in and out of my wheelchair all day long, when I transfer into my car, onto the couch, into my standing frame, onto my bed....

yougotmagiclegs2 karma

Thanks for the reply! What phrase would you prefer people use when referring to a rolling person?

TealSherer8 karma

"a person with a disability" is the politically correct way. Person first, disability second. Or a person who uses a wheelchair, etc..

chrisnch2 karma

I'd never heard of a standing frame, but thankfully there is wikipedia.. Is that purely therapeutic, or also nice/pleasant to work at?

TealSherer4 karma

both! It's very good for my range of motion, bone density etc.. it also just feels good to stand up and stretch out. I read a lot while I'm standing, get work done, make phone calls, etc... :-)

ChuckRagansBeard5 karma

The opening from S1E1 of MGL when your chair roles down the hill while you are trying to get out of the car may be the funniest thing I have seen in years. Everything about that sequence is perfect: the music, how slowly the chair spins around before going down the hill, your reaction. One of my favorite shows.

Wakinyan6 karma

That has actually happened to me more than once.

TealSherer5 karma

Me too! You'd think I'd learn to lock the brakes on my wheelchair but oh no...

ChuckRagansBeard3 karma

It definitely seems like something that could happen on a somewhat recurring basis. No different then when you leave your keys/phone/wallet in the car but has a much bigger impact on your day. As an opening scene it really sells exactly what to expect from the show: the common, everyday crap that every single person goes through, she just happens to be in a wheel-chair.

Wakinyan5 karma

The thing that it taught me was to always put the brakes on my chair... cough it only took about three experiences of that nature to teach me that. ;)

TealSherer5 karma

hahaha, just saw this comment. I just said basically the same thing above. ;-)

TealSherer3 karma

Thanks for saying this. I thought it would be the perfect way to set up the season and I'm glad you agree.

mutualwra5 karma

What is your opinion of Reddit? Have you used it for personal use? It's interesting to me, and many other fellow redditors, that there could b someone like Teal Sherer floating around some subreddit.

TealSherer10 karma

This is actually my first time using reddit and I plan to start using it a lot more. I'm late to the party.

Hirokomons5 karma

Are you planning on including Felicia's character in the next season of My Gimpy Life? And are there gonna be many new characters?

TealSherer9 karma

We'd love to have Felicia back for more episodes. Yes, there will be new characters but also familiar faces from last season.

aaron_gamejumper5 karma

Hi Teal! :) Hope you are having a great day! :)

TealSherer6 karma

Thanks Aaron!!! Hope you are too!

tz24425 karma

I was excited about watching My Gimpy Life as soon as I saw the trailer for Season 1. Happily supporting Season 2 as well.

It seems like you've gotten a lot of positive responses and press to the show, but have you received any negative responses?

TealSherer6 karma

Thank you. We actually received one of our first really negative responses on facebook this week. A guy thinks it's very wrong that we use the word "gimpy". He compared it to a racial slur and said shame on us and that he was praying for us.

Uncle_Sloppy6 karma

It's our word, we've earned the right to say it!

Source : I'm a lifelong gimpy person.

TealSherer5 karma


macmcgill72 karma

Comedy can be dangerous territory as it so often deals with exactly the things people would not otherwise say outside the context of trying to make it funny. Seems to me issues in society are big enough, the issues complicated enough, that we should be more prepared to deal with offensive things. Excessive courtesy can be stultifying, especially to creativity. So screw that guy.

TealSherer3 karma

haha, thanks. Totally agree.

TotalMonkeyfication5 karma

What's the most difficult part of making My Gimpy Life?

Also, what would you do differently with an unlimited budget?

TealSherer9 karma

It's definitely the stress of trying to make something that feels like TV at a fraction of the cost. We get so crunched for time that sometimes I only get one or two takes to do my lines, which can be a lot of pressure. A bigger budget I think would allow us to shoot less pages per day and take a little more time with performances.

TotalMonkeyfication6 karma

What originally inspired you to create MGL?

TealSherer11 karma

A couple things: As an actress I was frustrated because I wasn’t getting many auditions and therefore wasn't working much. I thought that creating my own show would be a good showcase of my talent and would hopefully lead to other work. In addition, I don’t think people with disabilites are represented enough in the media and I’ve always wanted to share what it’s like being a girl on wheels. Instead of waiting for someone else to do it, I figured I’d do it myself. I was very much inspired by what Felicia Day did with The Guild.

Phynal4 karma

Loved Season 1, and your character on The Guild, and Elf Sabers. Pretty much everything I've seen! Will you have guests like America and Casey in Season 2?

TealSherer6 karma

I'm not sure. But I love America and Casey and really enjoy working with them.

noshunintended4 karma

do you remember a time you got so angry that you could not control your temper, and absolutely just exploded on someone?

TealSherer8 karma

Not really. I'm not an angry person, but I get frustrated sometimes. The show lets me react in different ways that are more aggressive, but in real life I try not to get angry because most people don't see the world from my POV.

Hirokomons4 karma

Which was the funniest remark you have ever received as an actress?

TealSherer11 karma

Hmmm... It always cracks me up when people don't think I'm really disabled. Or will say "You're too pretty to be in a wheelchair." I have no idea what that means.

guns-4-hire4 karma

What is your favorite moment from The Guild? And what is it like working with Felicia Day?

TealSherer11 karma

When the Axis of Anarchy are introduced in Season 3 and we have the stand off in front of the Game Stop with the Knights of Good. And then I blame Vork for trying to push me into traffic. I love when both guilds are together. Felicia is the best. Super smart, generous, funny, focused, and she has great skin.

macmcgill73 karma

First of all, mucho gratz! It looked close there for a minute and that's where my question comes in. I'm a Tuber too, but basically just because I enjoy it. Sometimes I get a 1000 views, sometimes 3. Either way I'm cool. Obviously it would be awful nice if My Gimpy Life got enough views for some sustaining income, and in your drunken video (which is not a criticism, AT ALL), you talked about your moderate view count. Now, you got the funds to keep going at this (yay!) but I'm wondering about your attitude regarding the popularity of the show. Personally I find it shocking that such high caliber comedy isn't getting more while every video of a kitten sniffing it's own butt gets a million views a week. Were you hoping for more, has it gotten you down, or are you pretty much doing this because you can and FTW? I know your well deserved kudos have been major. Is that enough for you? Thank you, best regards.

TealSherer4 karma

Yes, it's definitely been frustrating and, I'm not going to lie, it has gotten me down at times. Instead of giving up though, it makes me want to work harder to gain more of an audience. I think the positive feedback and awards we've gotten have definitely helped me keep going. I believe in the show and know it's good - now we just need to make sure more people know about it.

macmcgill72 karma

Well, now you've got a whole new season! And we'll just go through all this over again for season 3! er, wait...maybe that's not the right approach. Sometimes things, really really good things, take awhile to get off the ground. Hate to hear that it's been a bit of a bummer here and there, and not sure what to say in response that you're just motivated to work harder since I'm pretty sure the word "inspirational" doesn't fly with you. It is a damn fine show, and I hope the ups are worth the downs. Maybe if you could pull out more than 5 episodes it could get a bit more momentum. Any plans on the number of episodes for season 2?

TealSherer5 karma

We’re figuring it out. When the Kickstarter ends, we’ll have an idea of how many episodes we can do. I’ve also been working behind-the-scenes to find additional sponsors because the first five episodes we did actually cost more than what we’ve been able to raise through KS. No matter what though, it’s full steam ahead thanks to all our generous backers.

MartinSchou3 karma

Without shopping first or ordering take-away, what would you be able to serve up for dinner for guests tonight?

TealSherer8 karma

I could make a stir fry with chicken and veggies (I like it spicy), and I'd make some rice to go along with it. Definitely served with wine. I've got a lot of that.

tz24423 karma

TV started with a few big broadcast networks, then cable added the ability for hundreds of specialized channels. Do you see internet productions as a natural continuation of this specialization of programming? Does creative control in your own internet production outweigh the potential of being on millions of tv screens when you would probably have network and advertising pressure affecting your content?

TealSherer6 karma

Those are good questions. Yes, I think we're seeing that internet productions are a natural continuation (interesting to note that Netflix is producing there own content now, etc.. I'm a big fan of House of Cards) Creative control over My Gimpy Life is so important, esp since it's so personal to me. I could definitely see a network screwing it up if they had control of it. I'm not going to lie though it would be nice to have millions of viewers and to have TV $$.

JohnQPotamus3 karma

As a cane-using, prospective entertainer, MGL has been a big, important thing for me. "SO INSPIRATIONAL" etc. What is the most important piece of advice you have for upstart creators (maybe particularly those with disabilities, but not necessarily)?

TealSherer5 karma

Create something you're very passionate about. It's a lot of work creating your own show, esp if you want it to be successful, so you have to be ready for that. And if you're not passionate about your material then it's going to be really hard to put in all of the work needed.

fleabitten3 karma


TealSherer6 karma

Thankfully, I don't have any pain. I just focus on the things I can do. Even though I'm a paraplegic, I'm fully independent and have a really wonderful life.

Wakinyan2 karma

Hi, Teal. Alan Seeger here. Good to... er... "see" you. I don't have a question or anything at this point, just wanted to come hang out with you somewhere other than Facebook. ;)

TealSherer4 karma

yay! Hey Alan.

yougotmagiclegs2 karma

Any chance that Bre will have a supporting role in MGL?

TealSherer2 karma

Maybe. We don't have anything planned yet but it could be fun. She's definitely popular.

RevolverSly2 karma

Hi. First of all, congratulations in reach the goal for the second season of My Gimpy Life. I've always want to ask you if you ever played "Katawa Shoujo"?, if you did, what's your opinion?, if you didn't, well, you should. Probably Reddit is the better place for ask any reference about the game.

TealSherer5 karma

Thank you. I honestly have no idea who Katawa Shoujo is, but I'm so curious. I must google her.

RevolverSly1 karma

It's a date-simulator game, basically you read, rather than play, the game. In the game you're a high school boy who try to date girls, in this particular case, girls with disabilities, a deaf girl, a blind girl, an amputee girl. The game came from guys from 4chan, but it's not what we would expect from these place. Edit: BTW, the game contain "adult material".

TealSherer3 karma

I definitely want to check this out.

prajnadhyana2 karma

I don't really have a question, just wanted to say that I love your work and thanks for answering all my silly tweets to you!

Oh wait - just thought of a question! Do you consider yourself as a role model for other rolling people? It's obvious that you don't let the chair define who you are and I'm sure that many young/newly injured people must see that.

TealSherer8 karma

After my accident (I was 14 years old) I was devastated and had no idea what life was going to be like. And then one day this girl came to visit me in rehab (it's called peer support). She had been in a wheelchair for several years, was cheerleading, driving a convertible, had a boyfriend, had plans to go to college. She was awesome and meeting her raised my hopes as I thought "hey, I can be like her." So that's what I hope that I do for other people, especially people who are newly injured. I think it's important to know you're not alone and to have people to look up to.

MyraMains2 karma

Often on TV and even in My Gimpy Life, New York and LA are portrayed as being full of out of work actors tending bar or waiting tables while going to very crowed audition and hoping to be discovered. How accurate is this? Have you gone to an audition with hundreds of other people all competing for the same role that is filled before you even get a turn? I would really like an insider point of view of what life is like for a struggling young actor.

TealSherer3 karma

I've never personally gone to an audition that big but I have heard of big casting calls like that. It is common though to go to an audition for a role that has already been offered to a celeb that ends up playing it. So it's like why did they even audition all those actors. I guess they just need back-up options if the celeb doesn't take the part.

fraize2 karma

Hi Teal! I've met you a couple of times, and you've always been gracious and very generous with your time. You really let people in, and for that I thank you.

My question is: does it ever get old? Do you ever just want to eat your froyo in peace without somebody slobbering "OMIGAWD ITZ VENOMM!!"?

TealSherer4 karma

Haha, I actually don't get recognized that much. More so if I'm at a Con. So no, I can't say it gets old.

Dadbert972 karma

Do you go to cons, either as a guest or just a regular person? I took my son to his first con this year (Farpoint, back in February), and got to meet Felicia (apparently her uncle and my son have the same name, first and last), and we had a blast! I know he'd love to meet "Venom."

TealSherer5 karma

I've been to Comic Con in San Deigo a couple of times, Geek Girl Con in Seattle, and I'll be a guest this Nov at The Geek Media Expo in Nashville. I'd like to do more of them. So cool you and your son got to meet Felicia. So cool about the name connection. Love to meet you both someday.

kites472 karma

What was it like working with Felicia Day? How is she in real life?

TealSherer2 karma

Felicia is the first friend I had in Los Angeles and she’s the best. We met in Atlanta on the set of the HBO film Warm Springs. With both played polio patients who do a singing and dancing number in antique wheelchairs. Felicia is very generous, so smart, and funny. She's been very supportive of me. It means so much that she wrote the role of Venom for me and that's she's been so encouraging of My Gimpy Life.

Dadbert971 karma

Just wanted to say Gratz on reaching your Kickstarter goal, and I'm looking forward to S2 of MGL. Any teasers for upcoming eps?

TealSherer2 karma

Can't give you too much but we’ll probably take a look at what “Teal” does when acting is slow, we’ll definitely be getting to know Brian (Daryl Crittenden) better, and likely see some other returning faces.

tz24421 karma

Were the scenes in season 1 of MGL where you get to the commerical set and you don't get a real dressing room based on a real experience? Have you had experiences on a set where they were really prepared or really unprepared for you?

TealSherer3 karma

Yes, that was based on a real experience. Yes, I've had both experiences. When I booked a series regular role for a NBC pilot called "I'm With Stupid" they were very prepared. I had an accessible trailer with a lift and people were overly helping me out, making sure I was happy, etc.. Then I've had those experiences where it's like they didn't know where to put me, the set wasn't that accessible.... Thankfully I've gotten really good at going with the flow.

Dadbert971 karma

Hi, Teal! I'm on after all; kid's camp closed early for weather ( that isn't actually here).

TealSherer3 karma

Yay!! Hi!

Rubber_Soulmate1 karma

Hi, Teal! Any idea of when/where production of MGL Season 2 will take place?

TealSherer4 karma

Right after the Kickstarter ends (which is tomorrow) Gabe (my producing partner/MGL writer) and I will start outlining the season (though we've already somewhat started doing that) and then Gabe will start writing and we'll start pre-production. I hope to actually start filming within the next couple months. Filming will take place in Los Angeles.

ImGoing2Hell4This-11 karma

Do you support gay marriage? Most people with mental and/or physical disabilities do.

TealSherer9 karma