I’ve added the two missing episodes of Parenthood in the gallery - in time for tonight’s AWESOME episode!
Sneak Peeks for tonight’s episode.
Fans of NBC’s ensemble drama “Parenthood” have watched the romance heat up between Sarah Braverman (played by “Gilmore Girls” alum Lauren Graham) and her much younger boyfriend, Mark Cyr (played by Jason Ritter, “Joan of Arcadia”), this season. And despite the fact that the series has more than a dozen main cast members, the duo’s plotline has come front and center now that Sarah’s addict of an ex-husband, Seth (John Corbett), is apparently out of the picture.
Lauren and Jason talked to Yahoo! TV about the show’s third-season “snowball effect,” the fun of being part of such a big cast, and whether they’ve ever done the May-December thing themselves (separately, of course).
How does this season compare with previous ones?
Lauren Graham: I think it’s juicier. I think the third season is kind of a cool time, because, remember, we didn’t have a full first season, so it’s just sort of getting into some of these characters’ complexity, so I like it.
Jason, you came in at the end of the first season. Did it feel weird to join after the show had already gotten started?
Jason Ritter: Well, yeah, it was terrifying.
LG: It was?
JR: Oh, yeah.
JR: Yeah, because there’s a part of you that just feels like somehow you fooled everybody, and you’re going to get on-set and they’re going to go, “Well, who let this kid in here?” But it was immediately such a wonderful experience. I mean, I felt so welcomed and so put at ease by Lauren.
LG: By who?
JR: By you.
LG: As far as I’m concerned, you’re a series regular, and you always have been, even when you went to go save the world, whatever that was all about. You’re part of this. Jason’s part of this family forever.
Did you know your role would last this long?
JR: I think initially it was supposed to just be three episodes. And then they put me in the season finale of the first season, and that was exciting. And then I started to do “The Event.” But even during “The Event,” they brought me back for an episode in the second season, which was very nice.
LG: But it definitely was not intended to go on this long, and it happened because Jason is so charming and delightful.
Parenthood‘s Sarah and Mark (played by Lauren Graham and Jason Ritter) seem like the perfect, happy couple, so naturally, the show’s writers plan to send them through a romantic obstacle course, of sorts. In tonight’s episode (airing on NBC at 10/9c), Mark will face a lot of Bravermans, but the biggest challenge comes from someone outside the family.
TVLine caught up with Lauren Graham and Jason Ritter to talk about their characters’ romance, the challenges Sarah’s ex Seth (John Corbett) poses, and some extra treats for fans of Gilmore Girls and The Event.
TVLINE | What’s going on in Tuesday night’s episode? Jason, there are some pictures of your character out with all the ladies.
LAUREN GRAHAM | [Mark] gets introduced to the family at a big party that my brothers are having to launch their music studio. That’s a sweet part of this week’s show – that I’m all excited for him to meet my family. He’s not, like, partying with the ladies. [Laughs]
TVLINE | How does the family accept Mark? And what does he think of them?
JASON RITTER | I love them. And they’ve all been very accepting of me up to now.
GRAHAM | They’re happy for Sarah to be happy finally.
TVLINE | Seth has been stirring up a lot of drama in Sarah’s life recently. How does that affect Mark and Sarah’s relationship going forward?
RITTER | It’s tough. Exes are a very difficult part of any relationship. They’re harder to deal with than some new person that someone might be attracted to or not; there’s no history there, no old love there. So it’s difficult, especially because here’s someone who’s having a real problem with alcohol and now they’ve decided to get sober. So they’re returning to the person that they were when…
GRAHAM | We were connected.
RITTER | Exactly.
TVLINE | Is it going to strengthen Mark and Sarah’s relationship, as a result, or uncover some weaknesses in it?
GRAHAM | Both of those probably.
RITTER | Any time there’s any kind of pressure on anything, it changes it. Sometimes for the better. Sometimes for the worse. Sometimes for the medium between those two. [Graham laughs]
The on-again, off-again relationship between Sarah (Lauren Graham) and Mark Cyr (Jason Ritter) on Parenthood has weathered its share of challenges: their age difference, the fact that her daughter was his student. But the couple is about to weather their biggest test yet now that Sarah’s ex-husband, Seth, is back in town and headed to rehab.
"There’s this happiness that he’s finally taking care of himself but it’s very stressful for what it means for Mark and Sarah," Graham tells TVGuide.com. "It’s a very jarring thing to have Seth in town at all and I think still new for Sarah to be juggling any relationship issues. She’s been on her own for a while."
Tuesday’s episode (10/9c, NBC) will be a big step forward for Seth (John Corbett) as he enters rehab to cure his long-standing addictions. But will it be a step backward for Sarah and Mark after finally reuniting earlier this season? Her support for her ex (both emotionally and financially, after she borrowed the money for Seth’s treatment from Julia and Joel) may mean less time for Mark, but he’s prepared to put up a fight for the woman he loves. “It’s a difficult thing for him, but he knows that it’s an important thing for Sarah, and if he were to try to put his foot down or draw a line in the sand, it would only push her away,” Ritter says. “He’s able to see on one hand that that is very selfless and beautiful of her, and on the other hand, he’s nervous that maybe it will bring things up for her that will cause her to pull away from him. He’s doing his best right now to stay in the relationship and also make some boundaries so that she knows that this is not easy for him.”
Adds Graham: “He’s no pushover.”
Also coming to Sarah’s rescue will be her two children, especially eldest daughter Amber (Mae Whitman), who lends a hand to protect her mom despite her rocky relationship with her dad. “I think this is the first time that they’ve started to see their mom happy. So even though at times the kids are at odds with Sarah, they kind of step up and help out and also push back at their dad and want to make sure that they’re helping me do the right thing,” Graham says. “It’s funny because Sarah is one of the only characters who has kids this old and so we’re really seeing them go out on their own and becoming adults.”
Parenthood’s Monica Potter on new baby Braverman: You’ll see a crack in Kristina’s armor
Also on Tuesday night’s episode, Mark meets the rest of the Braverman clan. “They meet Mark at a big party and give him a hard time, as they do,” Graham says.
A family as big, and as involved in each other’s personal lives, as the Bravermans may be intimidating, but Mark sounds ready (albeit a little nervous). “He’s trying to make a good impression and hoping that everybody likes him, but at the same time, he has the knowledge that he and Sarah are really in love and that he hasn’t done anything to be ashamed of,” Ritter says — before Graham adds “yet” with a laugh.