Virginia Chance got pregnant when she was 15 years old, and she married the baby's father, Burt. Now she lives with her husband, their grown-up son, Jimmy, and her grandmother, Maw Maw.
Virginia was not thrilled when Jimmy brought home a baby conceived during a one-night stand he had with a serial killer. She suggested that he take the little girl to the local baby safe-drop at the fire station. Virginia knew that it's hard to raise a baby and didn't want to do it again. But when Jimmy refused to give Princess Beyonce away, Virginia warmed to the girl and renamed her Hope.
Virginia works for Knock Knock Knock Housekeeping, cleaning rich people's houses. She takes the junk her bosses throw away and hoards it in a shed so that when Burt wins the lottery they will have stuff for their big new house.
Virginia lied to Jimmy, telling him that his grandmother was a missionary who was murdered, but she ultimately had to admit that her mom died when she hit her head on a ceramic duck. What she doesn't know is that Maw Maw made that story up because Virginia's mom had abandoned her. Jimmy found out the real story, although he didn't tell his mom that her own mother is still alive and living a swinging lifestyle.
When Virginia's mean-spirited jet-setter cousin came to town, she did her best to remind Virginia of her terribly awkward, back-brace-ridden youth and how she stole her future husband, Burt, away from her own cousin. Perhaps that's what fuels Virginia's desire to always strive for more. Whether she's forcing the entire family to enter the National Invention Convention Extravaganza to score the large cash prize or preparing for the GED test, Virginia is constantly on a mission of self-improvement.
Of course, her get-rich schemes are often misguided. It's understandable that she'd tire of cleaning other people's homes for a living and want to strike out on her own. But choosing a career as a tarot card reader was ill-advised, especially since it turned into an opportunity for her to shamelessly abuse her newfound, and entirely fabricated, powers.
Through it all, Virginia has settled into her role as granddaughter, wife, mother, and grandmother. She may not be the smartest or richest woman on the block, but she never lets her family down.
An accomplished actress, Martha Plimpton has achieved success on stage, screen and television. For her work on RAISING HOPE, she was nominated for a 2011 Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series. She also has been nominated two years in a row for a Critics' Choice Television Award in the category of Best Actress in a Comedy.
Plimpton has appeared in more than 30 films, including "The Goonies," "The Mosquito Coast," "Running on Empty," "Beautiful Girls," "Parenthood," "200 Cigarettes," "Pecker," "Eye of God" and the recent independent feature, "Small Town Murder Songs."
Her memorable TV guest appearances include "The Good Wife," for which she earned an Emmy Award nomination earlier this summer for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series; "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," for which she earned a 2002 Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series; FRINGE; and "How to Make it in America."
On stage, Plimpton starred in the New York Philharmonic's 2011 concert of Stephen Sondheim's "Company," opposite Patti LuPone and Stephen Colbert. Previously, she starred alongside Stockard Channing in "Pal Joey" for the Roundabout Theatre Company, garnering her third Tony Award nomination in as many years, as well as a Drama Desk Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Musical and a Drama League nomination. In 2008, Plimpton starred in "Top Girls" for the Manhattan Theatre Club and received Tony Award and Drama Desk Award nominations, and starred in Lincoln Center Theatre's production of William Shakespeare's "Cymbeline."
In 2006-07, Plimpton appeared in Tom Stoppard's nine-hour trilogy, "The Coast of Utopia" at Lincoln Center Theater, for which she earned a Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award and Tony Award nomination. Other appearances on stage include Shakespeare in the Park's "A Midsummer Night's Dream," MTC's "Shining City," CSC's "The False Servant" (Drama League nomination), "HurlyBurly" and Atlantic Theater Company's "Hobson's Choice"
(Obie Award, Lortell nomination). She is also a proud member of the Steppenwolf Theatre Ensemble since 1998, where she has appeared in Henrik Ibsen's "Hedda Gabler"; Tennessee Williams' "The Glass Menagerie"; Stephen Jeffries' "The Libertine," opposite John Malkovich; and made her directing debut there with "Absolution" in 2001.
Plimpton divides her time between Los Angeles and New York City.