Fans of sci-fi and animation are in for a treat when TBS series Final Space launches on VRV this week. The series, created by and starring “Tennessee wonder child” Olan Rogers, is a mix of comedy, drama, and action in space. To get viewers warmed up, I had a chat with Coty Galloway, the voice of Avocato and a long-time friend and collaborator of Rogers’s.
Coty may well have some of the highest job satisfaction in the industry. There was plenty to talk about when it came to his career, his work on Final Space, and his friendship with Olan. No matter where the topic went, Coty was happy and excited about all of it. And I can’t really blame him. If I got to spend all my time working with one of my closest friends and playing an awesome space cat, I’d probably never stop smiling, either.
But there is one thing to know about Coty’s role “right off the rip.”
Everybody wants to be a… Ventrexian
Despite appearances, Avocato is not a cat, but a Ventrexian—and the difference isn’t just semantic. “Can a cat pick up an amazing blaster?” Coty points out. “Cats are pretty acrobatic. They’re not blasting their way through walls or anything like that.”
Avocato is definitely more of a bounty hunter than an aloof house pet, described by the Final Space team as “Han Solo if he tongue bathed himself.” This isn’t Coty’s first time taking on that type of role, either. (The Han Solo bit, not the tongue bathing bit—as far as I know.) Among his various YouTube short film credits, he appeared alongside Olan in the latter’s Star Wars fan film The Scarlet Lance, where the two played renegade space traders.
But rather than springboarding solely off the legendary Star Wars character, Coty preferred—as he does in general as an actor—to tap into aspects of himself that match the role. In particular, one major part of the character’s motivation is guided by his own feelings about his family, to the point that he got teary just talking about it in the interview. No spoilers here, though—you’ll have to find out what’s got him choked up for yourself.
Coty’s Avocato—and yes, it’s pronounced “avocado”—is, appropriately enough, the unlikely best friend of Olan’s character Gary, a human who’s spent five years aboard a prison ship.
Final Space boasts an amazing cast, including David Tennant (Doctor Who’s Tenth Doctor), Tom Kenny (the voice of SpongeBob SquarePants), and Steven Yuen (Glenn of The Walking Dead). Coty, who played and helped create Avocato for the series pilot, considers himself privileged both to be among these actors and to have the opportunity to be in the final version of the show.
“From the beginning, [Olan and I] just built this character and put the work into it. And then thankfully TBS said, ‘Okay, guys. We can have anyone we want, okay? But let’s give this guy a shot.’” Rogers even read with him during the audition, and the chemistry born of years of friendship clearly shone through.
Coty didn’t come out of nowhere, though. In fact, fans of YouTube fan films may recognize him from his work on projects based on Far Cry and Fallout, as well as original independent projects. He credits his immersion in California’s fan film community and the world of YouTube creators with much of where his life has taken him.
His first encounter with the YouTube filmmaker scene came when he was working on a show in Atlanta, and a friend pointed out a short on the video sharing site to him. He was impressed by and enamored with the community making these films right away: “I immediately hit my knees and I prayed. I said, ‘Please just let me around these people so I can learn.’”
He got more than just learning, joining the community of creators and appearing in a variety of projects.
Coty loves what YouTube brings to the table in terms of letting creators get their work out to brand new audiences, and he credits it with allowing both himself and Olan to grow and achieve new things. He’s excited in the same way for the arrival of Final Space on VRV, allowing it to reach viewers who might otherwise not have become familiar with it.
Humor and Heart
So what are you in for if you’re new to Final Space? “Whew! A roller coaster of emotions, baby!”
Coty sees Final Space as a perfect fit for VRV, which already has a large anime library offering fans a variety of shows with unique styles, interesting plots, and complex characters. “I really think that’s what Final Space will be able to bring to the VRV community, is that it has those things as well. But it has its own aspect. It has its own vision, its own style, and its own place it’ll win in people’s hearts when they watch it.”
He also praised Olan and executive producer David Sacks for creating exciting scripts, full of “life that comes off the page.” Though he also pointed out that many of the scenes between Avocato and Gary were ad-libbed in the booth—again, something they as long-time friends are able to pull off and add to their characters.
Most of all, he tells viewers to look forward to a series that never lets up “from episode one to episode ten,” with character development, comedy, drama, and a tightly-written script. There’s also a second season lined up, though he cautions that he knows about as much as anyone else about that at this point.
What will Olan and Coty’s unique friendship, and their experience in the world of fan films, bring to Final Space? You can find out for yourself now—watch Final Space on VRV!