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Casey Gardner is the deuteragonist of Atypical. She is a star track athlete at Newton High School and later Clayton Prep. She is the daughter of Doug Gardner and Elsa Gardner and the younger sister of Sam Gardner. Casey is portrayed by actor Brigette Lundy-Paine.

Personality[]

Casey is a feisty, strong-willed, protective, brave young girl, as well as kind, caring, independent, reasonable and clever. She often teases or picks on her brother in a sisterly way, but she always protects him due to him being autistic. She often makes fun of Elsa and always have snarky comments and shows her bad attitude towards her mother. Casey has respect for Doug, even though he left her and Sam when Doug learned that Sam is autistic. She’s confident and isn’t afraid to stand up for herself. Especially when she ‘BOPS’ Nate’s milkshake at him for insulting her. Casey is often shown annoying her brother, doing things, such as taking his food or crawling over him. This is her way of helping him and trying to prepare him, knowing that he will have to encounter people who annoy him. Casey is shown affection to Sam when he needs her the most. She is very reliable to Sam, and she is always there for him whenever he needs it no matter what.

In the first Season, Casey has been shown to be rather protective of her brother, Sam, and others as well. Casey did not receive much attention growing up, despite being the younger child, as Elsa and Doug were often attending to Sam's needs. In 2004, following Sam's diagnosis at age 4, their father was distressed and believing he was not fit to care for a child with autism, so he left the family for 8 months to live at his dad's house. Casey was too young to remember, and she simply carried on with her mother and brother.

Casey being protective of her brother is something first seen in the Antarctica episode. While Casey is outside their house talking to Beth and Evan, Sam runs out of the house and screams, "Twat!" (before he was using this word among others to calm himself down). A surprised and startled Evan angrily asks, "what the hell is wrong with him?" Casey steps in between Evan and Sam and aggressively tells him that nothing is wrong as a way of defending her brother, causing Evan to back off. Afterwards, Casey notes that she is the only one who can make fun of her brother in her own selfish manner. This is not the only time she has been protective of Sam, as it this can be seen on multiple occasions in all four Seasons.

Biography[]

Season 1[]

In the Gardner home, Casey makes her first appearance with her family to have dinner with them and talk about their days.

At Newton High School, Bailey Bennett is first shown laughing at Beth Chapin's vandalized locker. When Casey realizes that this was Bailey's doing, she approaches her to punch in the face, resulting in a blackeye on Bailey's face and Casey's suspension.

After this incident, Beth Chapin and her brother, Evan, arrives to Casey's house to thank her for defending Beth against Bailey. He also tries to hook up with Casey. Despite Casey initially rejecting him in favor of focusing on track, they quickly become friends and get together later in Season 1.

Bailey's family is revealed to be one of the biggest in terms of funding school activities. This includes a bus that the Track Team used for a ride to a competition. Casey has no choice, but to begrudgingly apologize to her, so that Bailey's father will fund their bus this year. Casey says sorry to Bailey, who accepts her apology without feeling mad about being punched early on.

In the park, when Casey observes her family picture, which Doug is not in it during the time of Sam's autism day when he was 4 years old, this causes Casey to cry and Doug finds her alone. Casey asks why he left. He replies back by revealing to her that he left the family for 8 months, back in 2004, to live at his uncle's place, because he couldn't accept bearing the responsibility of taking care of his child with autism. When Casey found out about it, she gets upset and it affected their relationship for a while, but they do still remain close when Doug apologized to her and he attempts to redeem himself by forming a closer bond with their family, especially Sam.

In Coach Briggs' office, Coach Briggs breaks the news to Casey that since she is doing magnificent at track and she is besting other competitors, she earns her scholarship to get accepted into Clayton Prep. He feels proud of her accomplishment, and he highly encourages her to transfer to that school to which Casey agrees, even though she will miss him and her best friends at Newton High School.

As a price to pay for not telling her best friends (including Sharice and Tanya) about transferring to another school, Casey is bulled by her best friends from the Track Team, when they all find out she might be transferring to Clayton Prep by playing a joke on her and stealing her clothes when she is trying on a dress at a clothing store. It is implied that Sharice doesn't want to do this, because she apologizes to Casey before taking her clothes. They make up and stay friends eventually.

While Casey is riding her bike outside to head towards the bar, Casey's mother, Elsa, breaks up with Nick to return to her family. This is not before Elsa who gives a long goodbye kiss to him, sparking attention from Casey, who witnesses everything between them and she runs away, becoming disoriented and allowing Evan to take her virginity away from her via sexual intercourse.

At the bar, Nick is visited by Casey, and he says what kind of drink she needs. Nick gives her a glass cup of drink, but she angrily tells him to stop breaking her family apart and to leave her family alone. As an attempt to scare off Nick, Casey grabs her glass cup to pour all of her drink in front of him on the bar counter and she throws the glass cup right through him, breaking it. She flips him off with her two middle fingers, before leaving the bar.

At the end of Season 1, a while ago, when Casey's mother, Elsa, tells Doug that one of her friend's cousins had died, this ends up being a lie and Doug notices. When Casey writes "Stop banging the bartender" on their schedule board, Doug becomes aware that his wife is cheating on him for Nick.

Season 2[]

In Season 2, Casey had transferred schools to Clayton Prep, which is three towns away from her home and her former high school. This is where she meets Izzie Taylor, who dislikes Casey initially for punching Bailey in the face. However, in Coach Crowley's office, they both become close friends after talking about caring for their closest siblings at home. This is evident when they call each other their favorite person during a sleepover. Casey's relationship with her mother also sours after she had caught her cheating at the end of the first Season. After an altercation with Nate, Izzie and Casey both stop talking to each other, as Nate lied to Izzie about kissing Casey. The two are ultimately reunited at Casey's birthday party, where they both make up and almost kiss before being interrupted by Casey's mother. The Season finishes with them in the car holding hands, with Casey declining Evan's call.

Season 3[]

Continuing from where Season 2 had left off, the first episode shows Casey with Izzie inside of her car still holding each other's hands. They are interrupted by her mother's texts to Casey's phone. She says it's important to bring a fire extinguisher. Later in the Season, Casey and Izzie make out for the first time on the track, after Casey had been avoiding Izzie, since Izzie admitted her romantic feelings for Casey. While Casey returns her feelings of love for Izzie, she breaks up with her boyfriend, Evan (who didn't take the break up so well and he walks away from Casey to get inside of his car to cry all night), and the two start officially dating. Even though Izzie is deeply in love with her, she remains hesitant with displaying the relationship and her sexuality in public. Casey gets upset with Izzie, claiming "...in 5 minutes you will be off kissing some random guy at a party". After this, Izzie kisses her. This shocks Casey, but she accepts the 'apology' and they both walk down the hallway holding hands. In the end, she comes out of her bubble and passionately kisses Casey in the busy hallway of Clayton Prep, but not before Casey telling her about being scouted by UCLA.

Season 4[]

Casey struggles with telling Doug about Izzie. She explores her relationship in this Season. Casey is also planning to go to UCLA. Izzie leads a protest about the school dress code, and she convinces Casey to join her cause. Casey is conflicted about it, but goes along with what she says. They both wear masculine clothing to show off to everyone in their school that girls can have equal rights as much as boys do. However, they both get in trouble. Casey only gets a warning, unlike Izzie who gets suspended for being the leader of the protest. They have a fight because of it.

During Izzie's time in suspension by being outside of school, Casey cheated on the physics test for Izzie to not fall behind and to remain enrolled in school. Izzie responds by saying that she didn't have to, but Casey did it because she loves her. Although, her guilt over cheating on a physics test forces her to confess to the principal of her school. Luckily, he let it slide, surprising her, as well as her being told to keep up the good work to continue on pursuing her dream of being accepted into UCLA.

Unfortunately, Casey becomes too anxious or too stressed to run at a track competition at Clayton Prep, leaving her parents in disbelief and they worry about her mental health. She didn't come out of her bedroom at home to eat for a while until Sam arrives to ask if she can teach him on how to drive a car to help drive Zahid home from his testicular surgery. She complies with his request, but she says that she needs to eat a bunch of fast food first. While Sam is driving slowly and Casey tells him to drive faster, Sam almost hit Evan's dog and they retrieve him to return to Evan at his house. Being confronted by Beth about hurting her and Evan's heart by breaking up with him for Izzie, she flees away to avoid further drama with Beth.

At Izzie's house, she discusses with Izzie that she decides to drop out of Clayton Prep to which Izzie didn't agree with Casey's decision, and she insists on staying with her to continue on seeing her in school. Casey refuses as she lost her passion for running. Casey also decides to transfer back to Newton High School, causing Izzie to become upset and disappointed about it.

At the end of the Season, Casey receives a text from Izzie — she decides to talk to her. Casey doesn’t think it’s fair that she broke up with her, and she finds it condescending that she thought it would be best for her. Izzie believes she’s been bad for her and ruined things, because she told her that Casey's father says to her that she is dramatic by ruining Casey's life the moment they both met at Clayton Prep. On the contrary, Casey says that this is not true. Izzie tells her she is right and the couple both kiss each other, confirming it’s not over.

Appearances[]

Casey is one of four characters to have appeared in every episode of the series, with the others being Sam, Elsa and Doug.

Season 1[]

Season 2[]

Season 3[]

Season 4[]

Trivia[]

  • Casey is one of the only LGBTQIA+ characters, along with her mother (Elsa), Izzie, and Abby. She comes out as bisexual in Season 4.
  • She is very athletic, having been on the track team at her old school and getting a scholarship to Clayton Prep, after breaking a very prestigious record.
  • She told her father that she and Evan mostly spend their time hanging out at Kennedy Park.
  • She turns 16 during Season 2.
  • Despite her father leaving at one point, her mother's affair seems to only strengthen her bond with him.
  • She is known to help out Sam in certain situations, like finding his college portfolio and helping him drive a car.
  • She is one of the few people to not smother Sam, though she remains extremely protective.
  • She was born at 3:15 am.
  • She hates the 'Happy Birthday' song.
  • Both of her closest friends (Sharice and Izzie) betrayed her at one stage when they got upset with her. Sharice took her clothes when she was trying on a dress and Izzie wrote 'Slut' and 'Hoe' on her sneakers.
  • Paraphernalia: Her phone, her Fitbit, milkshake, backpack, and her books.
  • Despite being the deuteragonist or the second main protagonist in the series, she is often considered to be a co-protagonist to some fans, due to her sense of justice.
  • She enjoys jogging daily.
  • She is often seen in her bedroom, because she enjoys her privacy.
  • She loves her girlfriend, Izzie, so much more than her former boyfriend, Evan.
  • She seems to dislike Paige, her older brother's girlfriend.
  • She got her appendix removed.

Gallery[]

Photos[]

Behind the Scenes[]

In an interview with BUILD Series, Brigette shared their thoughts on their character [Casey] and here's what they told them:

"I just love Casey, she's just so cool. Casey just has like a carelessness about her but also just such an intense passion for everything she does that I really respect and I feel like I hadn't seen a part like that, that was a 16-year old girl that was that strong and knew who she was."

They also shared something they liked about having the role.

"I really always liked the opportunity to not have to put a bunch of makeup and stuff, and Casey just is herself so I jumped at the opportunity."

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See the full interview on YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TK0_--IlnqE

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