One Day at a Time Stars Talk Filming That Emotional Season 2 Finale

Though the season ultimately had a happy ending, with Lydia pulling through and making it to her naturalization ceremony, finally becoming an American citizen alongside Canadian ex-pat Schneider (Todd Grinnell), it was certainly a nerve-wracking episode—especially when Lydia’s beloved Berto (Tony Plana) arrived for one last dance before taking her to the great beyond. When she finally told him “Not yet,” the screams of relief from the studio audience only echoed our screams of relief at home. 

While we were biting our nails at home, the players involved were being put through the wringer as well. “It was a heavy week on set for me,” Isabella Gomez, whose Elena shared one of the more emotional moments of the episode at Lydia’s bedside, told E! News at Netflix’s 2018 Q1 junket in NYC. “Justina Machado‘s a genius and she has her emotions right here and she’s just like, ‘And sad! And angry! And I’m this way!’ For me, I have this weird thing where once I process the scene too much, I can’t do it anymore. When it’s that emotional, it’s like my body shuts down and it’s like, ‘You’re hurting yourself.’ So it was a weird combination of ‘I want to rehearse this as much as I can, but I also want to make sure it’s fresh for the audience.’ And it was also so hard to watch everybody else, so it was a hard week.”