Cynthia Erivo ‘Roar’ Episode Has a Lot to Say About Working Mothers

The Apple TV+ series Roar has an all-star cast, including Nicole Kidman, Issa Rae, Betty Gilpin, and Alison Brie, each in one episode. Cynthia Erivo stars in The Woman Who Found Bite Marks On Her Skin. Erivo said her episode has a lot to say about the struggles of working mothers. 

'Roar' star Cynthia Erivo screams in a boardroom
Cynthia Erivo | Apple TV+

Erivo spoke at a press conference for Roar on March 31. Here’s what she had to say about her episode, The Woman Who Found Bite Marks On Her Skin. Roar is now streaming on Apple TV+.

Cynthia Erivo is a working mother on ‘Roar’

Erivo plays Ambia, a mother who goes back to work, but finds bite marks all over her skin. The bite marks were created by makeup prosthetics, one of the show’s more complicated effects. Erivo just focused on the theme of motherhood. 

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“It’s navigating work life, being a wife, trying to handle being at the top of her game and not being able to make it to all of those things and fully be there,” Erivo said at the press conference. “Then she’s handling guilt because of it all. It’s really hard and sometimes it’s not particularly rewarding, but then you find the light at the end of the tunnel and something about being able to have her kids, to have her life, though it is difficult, something keeps her coming back.”

Cynthia Erivo hopes ‘Roar’ speaks to working mothers 

The bite marks may be a metaphor for what’s really eating at Ambia. Acknowledging that every mother’s experience is different, Erivo hopes that Roar does illustrate that it’s okay for everyone to ask for help.

“It does say that there are women out there who are struggling and figuring it out as much as they possibly can and that empathy is needed, and space and help is needed,” Erivo said. “We are not always good at asking for it because we haven’t historically been told that we can. And I think that there’s something really special about this episode that says you should ask for help if you need it and no one’s going to think any worse of you. A mother has the right to ask for help where she needs it.”

Mothers helped on the set of ‘Roar’

Roar co-creator Liz Flahive already had kids and co-creator Carly Mensch was pregnant while filming. Erivo said she leaned on them to capture the motherhood experience. 

As someone who wasn’t yet a mother, I was in an episode surrounded by mothers. I hope what I’m giving them is something that they can be proud of and something that is familiar and truthful, for one thing. That scene that we shoot towards the end where she sort of explains what she’s feeling and how she’s felt, I remember feeling like I had a massive hug that was surrounding me because it was such a vulnerable moment but I also felt like it was one of those moments where I got to be a voice for a lot of people who haven’t been able to say what they’re genuinely feeling.

Cynthia Erivo, Roar press conference, 3/31/22

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