WARNING: This article contains spoilers for Partner Track Season 1.With all ten episodes of Partner Track now available to stream on Netflix, the season 1 finale left fans with more questions than it answered. Ingrid’s track to making partner at Parsons Valentine doesn’t go as smoothly as she planned, and her relationships begin to pay the price of her resolve, but that doesn’t mean she’s out of the game.
The series stars Arden Cho, alongside Bradley Gibson and Alexandra Turshen as her best friends Tyler and Rachel. Rob Heaps, Matthew Rauch, Nolan Gerard Funk, Dominic Sherwood, and Roby Attal also star.
Screen Rant chats with actor Bradley Gibson about Tyler’s storyline and the opportunity to address racism in the workplace on the show.
Bradley Gibson Breaks Down Partner Track
Screen Rant: I really enjoyed Partner Track. I was a big fan of the first season. Arden was the only one I had a chance to speak with before the show aired, so I’d love to just go back and ask you what drew you to the role of Tyler. How did you end up playing this character?
Bradley Gibson: Oh my gosh. Well, like most things, it came in the form of an email and audition tape request, along with the script for the pilot. And the second I started reading the pilot, not just Tyler, just the entire show, I fell so in love with it. It was something that I felt that I hadn’t seen before on television. An Asian woman leading a show about breaking the glass ceiling. It’s intense, but it’s also fun. It has the sort of Sex and the City type of feel. The city itself is a character, right? New York City is such a big part of the show. And I crave to be a part of storytelling that is groundbreaking in that way and pushing the needle forward.
That really got me right there. And then also the role of Tyler…I connected so much with him for so many reasons, right? I am a black gay man living in New York City and I know what it feels like to be pounding the pavement, to be grinding, to be hustling for your journey, but also what it looks like to be a good friend and what it looks like to be a young person in 2022, post-pandemic—all those things. I really saw Tyler believe in who he was, and I connected with the story and with him and I sent a tape in and after a couple of meetings and callbacks or whatnot, I ended up getting the role of Tyler Robinson.
Screen Rant: Well, Tyler has a lot going on throughout the first season.
Bradley Gibson: Yes, he does.
Screen Rant: A lot is happening for him. He has this especially powerful storyline that starts to take center stage in the second half. How was it to address these ongoing issues of racism and white fragility through this character?
Bradley Gibson: It felt so good because I think as a black person, as a person of color, there’s no way to go through life and not have these questions and these feelings kind of bubbling within yourself. I definitely have felt that within my industry of being an actor—I do a lot of theater in New York, but there definitely are moments where I question racism and microaggressions and whatnot, in my own workplace in different settings. So to play a character that does something—it’s grounded in reality, Tyler’s choices. I feel that what makes it a fantasy, what makes it fiction, is that people are not often able to really make noise like that, and take a stand and stand up for themselves and be their own superhero in the way that Tyler is.
It felt so good to be able to do that and say those words and not take that. It was very empowering for me, and I’m thankful that now the show is almost a month-in to being out, that so many people have responded to his journey and to his arc. And I hope that they felt empowered to stand up for themselves in terms of racism, or any sort of injustice in the workplace that makes you not feel safe and supported. Yeah, it was thrilling and the chance of a lifetime and I got to live out my fantasy of standing up for myself in the most powerful way possible.
Screen Rant: If the show, hopefully, gets a second season, do you think this is something they’ll continue talking about?
Bradley Gibson: Of course, I hope the show continues. Please, please, please give us Season 2.
Screen Rant: Me too! Yes.
Bradley Gibson: We want it; people want it. I think that if it’s not the situation of racism in the workplace, there are so many other issues that happen in the workplace that we probably will address, and I hope we do. I think that’s the beauty of Partner Track, is you get this fabulous show with fantastic, sexy people. We get romance, but we also get teachable moments and moments that open your eyes and talk about things that we’re dealing with as a society. Whether it be racism, whether it be sexism, whether it be homophobia, the list goes on and on and on. So I hope that we continue to talk about the topic of racism, but I also hope that we continue to talk about other matters that are so important to address.
Screen Rant: Tyler’s relationship status definitely got a little complicated. He broke up with his boyfriend of seven years and he ends up hooking up with his new boss. Do you have any guesses on where that could go or where you want it to go?
Bradley Gibson: Isn’t is so juicy just knowing that we ended the season [like that]?
Screen Rant: Yes! It was the best cliffhanger.
Bradley Gibson: That leaves room for a lot of juicy moments moving forward. But I think what that means for Tyler is that…Tyler was on a mission, whether he knew it or not throughout the season—his mission was to become free, right? Freedom with his goal. Freedom from the chains of work and of his dreams, but also freedom from that sort of tight-rigid reality he set up for himself.
And that relationship with Anthony was a part of that. So now that Tyler is single…and mingling [laughs], it leaves room for so much excitement and I really want to see Tyler continue to find that freedom and liberation, because I think it’ll do so much for the viewers and do so much for him with this character. So I hope that we see more moments with this new boss, but also, knowing Tyler, there’ll be more moments with many others.
Screen Rant: Your character also sings. There’s a very impressive scene where he is serenading Javi and playing the piano. Are you a musician yourself? Was that all you?
Bradley Gibson: Yeah, well, I am not the best piano player. So that was not me playing the piano. That was me singing. I’m a songwriter. I’m a theater actor. I’ve done Broadway shows. I’ve been singing my entire life. So yeah, that was my voice. I love singing. That wasn’t originally in the script. It was a very different scene, but our producers knew once they hired me that I was a Broadway actor—that I’ve played in The Lion King on Broadway among other things. So they came up with the idea and asked me if I would be down to do it, and I was like, “Yeah, of course. Let’s find a cool song. Let’s make it work. Let’s make sure it makes sense,” right?
I didn’t want it to happen, and it feels weird and kind of out of place. But our producers and our creators are so genius that they made it flow so well. It was like a huge fun moment, it was like the cherry on top—getting a chance to flex muscles that are also a part of me and my artist self, and music and singing is one of them. I love Rihanna, I felt the song fit so perfectly. It was the best. And people who know me weren’t expecting that. It kind of came out of nowhere. They were like, “Oh? Bradley also sings?”
Screen Rant: A lot of your scenes are with Arden and Alex. You guys have this really tight friendship in the show. Did you have a lot of opportunities to hang out on set? What was it like forming this dynamic with each other?
Bradley Gibson: I love those women so much. I’ve been saying this a lot, that my first fear when I got the role of Tyler was, “Oh my gosh, how are we going to bond? How am I going to connect with these two actresses?” Because we didn’t have the opportunity to screen test or chemistry read prior to starting because of COVID; because of so many other things. So my fear was, will we vibe? Will we work well together? Will I like them? Will they like me? But the second we all met each other, we immediately were laughing and having great conversation.
We were so excited about getting started on the work. And from the first shot of the season, throughout the season, we just continued to evolve and grow our friendship. And it really made it so easy and made it so fun to play. I think that that’s one of the magic things about our show. And I think one of the things that makes Partner Track work is that you feel that friendship between the three of them—you feel the history. And it makes you feel safe and filled with a warm hug from a friend because you see their love.
You see how much time they spend together, how well they know each other. And that’s just a testament to the love and respect I have for Alex and Arden. I consider myself so privileged to be able to be on this ride with them, right? To work with actors I also just love, and I get to call them friends. And the same goes for our entire cast—our entire ensemble cast. I have such profound respect for them and I consider them friends.
Screen Rant: Lastly, is there a storyline that you would like to explore for Tyler that the first season didn’t get to cover?
Bradley Gibson: I would just like to continue to see Tyler live in that liberation. And kind of continue to know that he’s a boss, know that he has something to say, and just keep diving in that pool. I think that season ended in such an exciting and juicy, but also cool, way to continue the story moving forward because there’s so much room for opportunities. I really want to see Tyler have it all. I want to see him have it all and not sacrifice himself for it. But moving forward, I want to see more relationships. I think I want to see more dating. I want to see him continue to own the room and build something. I feel like his goal now is to build something, so let’s see what he can do.
About Partner Track
Ingrid Yun, a 1st generation Korean American and the first lawyer in her family, experiences the trials and tribulations of excelling at the prestigious (but old school) law firm, Parsons Valentine. With the support of her friends, she battles through workplace challenges to break through the glass ceiling on her path to become partner. But will her drive and ambition leave room for love?
Check out our other Partner Track interviews with stars Arden Cho and Alexandra Turshen as well.
Partner Track Season 1 is currently available to stream on Netflix.