Kelsey Jannings is the first director of BoJack's comeback film Secretariat. She first appears in final episode of Season 1 and is a recurring character in Season 2. She also appears in Season 3, in a minor role.
Kelsey is an adult middle-aged woman with straight long brown hair that is below shoulder length. Her face has early signs of aging, wrinkles, slight bags under her eyes, and thick eyebrows.
According to the model sheets, she is 6 ft tall.
She wears an open dark green coat with brown and grey lining inside the collar with four pockets, buttons, and a zipper, a purple and blue striped blouse with a blue neckline and collar, a pair of dark teal jeans, and knee length brown boots.
Kelsey is fairly similar to BoJack, in the sense of being very hard to please. BoJack tried in Season 2, on numerous occasions to get her to like him but to no avail.
Kelsey comes across as rather hostile towards people in public, greets them somewhat coldly, and appears to be someone with much emotional baggage. Yet she manages to have a lot of patience and professionalism on set when shooting takes.
Kelsey does come across as rather maternal and concerned when it comes down to her daughter, Irving, and worried about losing custody of her—especially when she lost Irving and thought she was "a terrible mother."
BoJack assures her she is not a terrible mother, and he knows "terrible mothers."
Kelsey claims the only reason she took the job as director of Secretariat was so that she could provide for her daughter, Irving. She worries she is not a good enough mother to Irving and she was fortunately reassured by BoJack who told her she was not a bad mother.
Prior to the big studio film, Secretariat, she had completed a number of critically acclaimed independent dramas—including Women Who Love Women Who Love Recycling, The Kids Are Just Okay, Dianne Feinstein on the Beach, as well as sports drama Billie Jean King Is Not My Lover.
She is very professional and serious about her work. This was exemplified when it came to the first day of shooting Secretariat. Unfortunately, BoJack was struggling to perform his lines correctly and took hours upon hours to get the one good take.
In Later,BoJack gets a call while attending the party by the Secretariat movie director Kelsey Jannings, asking him to play the role of Secretariat, since Andrew Garfield severely injured himself while entering Todd and Mr. Peanutbutter's Halloween store had its floor removed.
BoJack accepts the role.
In Chickens, due to her cold nature, BoJack seems to have some obsession with making Kelsey think he is likable and tries obsessively to appear as such.
In The Shot, BoJack talked to her and Lenny Turtletaub about the direction the film was heading in, going from "dark and gritty" to a "family-friendly film." They both brushed it off, but she confessed to BoJack she didn't want the film to be family-friendly.
They went to shoot a very important scene about Richard Nixon and how he corrupted Secretariat, which was cut from the film for being too dark, in the Nixon Museum.
They got away with filming the scene, and with Kelsey's help—BoJack gave the best performance of his life causing him to cry in private. When Lenny found out about the secret filming, he fired Kelsey. She was replaced by Abe D'Catfish.
Kelsey returned briefly in Season 3, in Fish Out Of Water, which featured BoJack attempting to speak to her underwater at the Pacific Ocean Film Festival. He was unsuccessful, due to being underwater and having no way of communicating.
She also appeared in Old Acquaintance, where she reconnected with BoJack. BoJack was to star in a film she is directing about a girl who loves jelly beans.
But due to the dispute between Princess Carolyn's agency and the agency of Rutabaga Rabbitowitz and Vanessa Gekko, he was unable to get the part and was called out by Kelsey over the phone. BoJack fired Princess Carolyn in the next episode due to this.
- Irving Jannings (Daughter)
- Marla (Ex-Wife)
- "If I blow it, I'm back to making small critically acclaimed movies about lesbians learning how to recycle."
- "I don't make mistakes, BoJack. I do the crossword in sharpie and I never learned the shortcut for undo."
- "It doesn't just happen when you get famous. Your age of stagnation is when you stop growing. For most, it's when they get married, settle into a routine. You meet someone who loves you unconditionally and never challenges you or wants you to change, and then you never change."
- Kelsey bears a strong resemblance to indie director Kathryn Bigelow, director of Zero Dark Thirty, The Hurt Locker, and other independent films.
- She is a lesbian, and directed indie films before moving to work on Secretariat to provide for Irving Jannings, her daughter.
- She adores Todd Chavez and constantly calls him "cute and adorable" whenever she sees him.
- She drives a 2002 Volvo with a reelect Al Gore bumper sticker.