Toheeb Jimoh On That 'Ted Lasso' Romantic Reveal & Dating Apps

- Ted Lasso -
Toheeb Jimoh On That 'Ted Lasso' Romantic Reveal & Dating Apps

Spoilers ahead for Ted Lasso Season 2, Episode 6.

Rebecca's been finding a deep love connection with mysterious Bantr user LDN152 on Ted Lasso. Although it seemed it might've been Ted, "The Signal" revealed that Sam has been messaging Rebecca on Ted Lasso. "Classic misdirection," Sam Obisanya actor Toheeb Jimoh says in a phone interview with The Dipp.

While viewers blissfully know who's on the other end of the Bantr screen, Sam and Hannah Waddingham's Rebecca, aka Bossgirl, still have no clue. So where this AFC Richmond player and team owner go from here is unknown. But here's what Jimoh had to say about Sam's blossoming relationship with Rebecca and how Sam's managed to stay so grounded in goodness.

The Dipp: What was your reaction to Sam and Rebecca being the ones messaging each other on Bantr? Did you see this dynamic coming?

Toheeb Jimoh: It was a very giddy reaction. The reaction of like a little boy in a sweets shop ... and I didn't actually see this coming. But a lot of people who had watched the show had been messaging me after Season 1 finished and they were like, 'Is there a little romantic thing between Sam and Rebecca?' And I was like, 'Huh? Why do they think that?' And then I went back and rewatched it myself. And I was like, 'Mmmm, I mean, there is a possibility.' So it'd been in the back of my head a little bit. Nobody told me about this beforehand, so I got the script and I read it ... and [I had] a bit of a jaw-drop moment like everybody else is gonna get.

What do you think it is about the two of them that has led them to connect so well specifically on this app where you don't know the other person's identity?

Sam has a real distinct lack of ego. And so when you put Sam up against Rupert, they're as polar opposite to each other as you can get. When you look at that scene in the curse episode ["Two Aces," Season 1, Episode 6] ... and the way Sam is with Rebecca, he's just very open with her and very honest. And I feel like when somebody is that open in front of you, you can't help but drop your guard as well.

Looking back — even this season in Episode 3 with Sam standing up against Dubai Air and Rebecca standing by him — I'd hope she'd do that for any player, but it does add a little more context knowing they have this deeper connection.

Oh 100%. They genuinely have a friendship. I think she would have done that for any of the players on the team. But with Sam, there is just that extra something between the two of them. I really like their dynamic together and I really like playing those scenes with Hannah.

You mentioned how Sam doesn't really have any ego. He's so young, he's so talented, and he's in such a flashy career. What is it about Sam that has let him stay so levelheaded? Is it his close relationship with his parents?

It's definitely his relationship with his parents. Sam's parents are super humble, super down to earth, and I feel like a lot of that he's just inherited. If Sam was suddenly to have gone to the United Kingdom and play football and made a ton of money, and then changed completely, I think it would have massively disappointed his parents. I feel like he's got his priorities straight...

But then also, that's just the nature of who he is as a person. I feel like once you're like that, and once you have the strength to be a kind person and to be an open person, then no amount of success, hopefully, will ever really change that. And then you run into somebody like Ted who really champions people like that, and I feel like all of that just entrenches that idea in his head that kindness is cool. Being an open person is cool. And that's the right way to go about life.

This season has a focus on fathers, and Sam's one of the only characters we've seen who has a good relationship with his dad. Do you think that changes what Ted is to him? For other players, Ted's kind of like a father figure.

Sam's dad's not with him physically and so Ted kind of fills that role. Even looking at Episode 3, I don't think Sam would have ever had the courage to do something like that that publicly just yet at this early stage in his career if he hadn't have run into someone like Ted. We had that stuff in Episode 2 of Season 1 where he's not playing well, he's homesick, and he's struggling to adjust — the culture shift is a bit difficult for him. And Ted's the one who really makes them feel comfortable, who really makes him feel at home in London. And so, he kind of subs in and fills that father slot for Sam.

I talked to Phil Dunster for "Do the Right-est Thing," but I wanted to speak to you as well, especially because it was Sam's fight — Jamie stepped aside and Ted gave Sam the press conference. You've talked a lot about that storyline, but I wanted to see if you had any thoughts on how people have responded to it.

When you're talking about Jamie and Ted's response to Sam's protest, it's just allyship. That's giving somebody the space to speak out, especially with Ted and the press conference scene. You don't need to speak for someone, but you need to give them the opportunity. Ted gives Sam the opportunity to use his platform to speak. It isn't about football — it transcends football, it transcends sport and entertainment. It's just about human beings being good to each other. I loved that about the episode as well. Everybody who weren't Nigerians on the team really got behind them and stood up for them. That's how you pull up for people you care about.

But in terms of reaction, Nigerians who are on my social media platforms messaged me and have spoken about how seen it made them feel. It's really cool, especially if you're in Nigeria, to watch something that's shooting in the U.K., that's a big American show, and for it to be talking about something that's so current and rooted in you. So it was a massive thing for me. That's one thing that I really hope that I achieve in my career. As much as I'm a British actor, I'm also Nigerian. And so I want to use my little platform to always make Nigerians feel seen.

Would you ever use a dating app like Bantr where you don't have any pictures?

I'm not really a big dating app [person] at all. I think if I was to use a dating app, it would be this. I was so surprised that this wasn't an actual thing. There's literally a hole in the market right now for somebody to make an app like Bantr. I feel like me and Juno [Temple] should just sit down and design this thing and make like a bucket ton of money. But I would love to use an app like Bantr. It'd be much better than all the other dating apps — I just can't get my head around them. I really just [mimics vomiting]. It doesn't work for me. But Bantr I'd use. I'd use Bantr.

You're right, you and Juno should work with Apple and create this app.

Let's corner the market.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.


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Images: Apple TV+

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