Salon life is coming to the small screen in TNT’s new dramedy “Claws.” The show, developed by creator Eliot Laurence and executive producers Rashida Jones and Will McCormack, centers on five nail techs working at the Nail Artisan of Manatee County salon in Palmetto, Florida. Salon owner Densa Simms (played by Niecy Nash) has big dreams of expanding her business—and will go to just about any length to do so, including working for the town’s criminal organization, the Dixie Mafia. But there’s more to the series than a shocking plot twist. Here, three reasons you should tune in.
1. The nails play a major role.
According to showrunner and executive producer Janine Sherman Barrois, nail designers Gracie J, Bianca “Beedy” Williams, Cristy Sanchez and Mei Kawajiri, work closely with the show’s writers to decide what kind of story they want the nails to tell. “Characters’ nails can change two to three times per episode depending on the storyline,” she explains, noting that the techs on set are well equipped for the job. “CND Brisa Sculpting Gels and Presto Art Gels are my favorites,” says key nail designer Gracie J, who adds that she also uses OPI tools. “The nails can take anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours to create. It’s intense work!”
2. The show celebrates diversity—with the nails to prove it.
“The show is a melting pot, and I think that’s reflective of the world today,” says Sherman Barrois. To that end, the nails also play a role in defining each character. “Densa’s nails are edgy, but refined,” she says, adding that Simms’ nails are often filed to a coffin shape. Trendy millennial Virginia Loc (played by Karrueche Tran) dons bold designs ranging from neon to dangling chain accents. Jennifer Roylance Husser (played by Jenn Lyon), a mother with a party girl past, sports wild patterns, like colored animal prints, while Quiet Ann (played by Judy Reyes) usually sports a bare, buffed nail. “Polly Marks (played by Carrie Preston) can be super conservative or super out of the box,” says Gracie J. “She’s not what you expect as a character and her nails won’t be what you expect either.”
3. “Claws” sheds a positive (and accurate) light on nail professionals.
Authenticity is crucial to the show’s production, says Sherman Barrois. “Williams and her team set up a ‘nail school’ in our production office so the actresses could learn the basics,” she explains, noting that the actresses also went to a nearby nail salon to study how the techs and clients interact. “Nail artistry is a gift that often doesn’t get the praise it deserves. Viewers are going to see female empowerment in action.”
Catch the series premiere on TNT on June 11.
Where you will you be watching Claws? Let us know in the comments below!
[Images: Courtesy of TNT]