Parenthood's Lauren Graham and Jason Ritter Talk Romance, Punches and TV Show Reunions

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]

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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]

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TVLINE | Does Sarah have romantic feelings for Seth?
GRAHAM | It’s confusing. I’m not sure she’s sure. There’s a lot in not having had him healthy for so much of the marriage. I think there’s a fantasy, for her kids, wishing that their father was in the picture. And maybe that spills over a little bit into some feelings for him. I’m not sure she knows exactly what it is.

TVLINE | Mark’s been really understanding and calm about everything so far. Is he going to lose his cool soon?
RITTER | He does start standing up for himself a little bit more. He’s always been at least clear with her about what makes him uncomfortable and what he’s not excited about. She at least knows that he’s trying. He just really loves her a lot. He loves her that much, so he’s trying as hard as he can. He’s not going to throw away a whole relationship because it’s difficult. It’s tough for him, but…
GRAHAM | Or are you going to punch [Seth]? [Laughs]
RITTER | I would love to get one good clock in there and then run fast. [Laughs] You get to see the true mettle of a person when they’re challenged like that.

TVLINE | Jason, how long are you around for this season?
RITTER | Neither of us know. I’m happy to say it’s already been longer than I initially thought. That’s really, really nice. They’re giving our relationship an opportunity to get into more complicated areas, instead of just having to break it off because it gets weird and complicated.

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TVLINE | Lauren, does it give you some anxiety knowing that Jason’s gig is probably temporary and Sarah’s likely going to have her heart broken?
GRAHAM | It does give me some anxiety because at this point, I’m so invested in this character, I personally don’t want to start over. And I’m not sure how they would split us up because it is so positive. Your guess is as good as mine.

TVLINE | Jason, at what point should fans move on from the idea of an Event reunion movie or miniseries?
GRAHAM | At the same point that the Gilmore Girls people should – never!
RITTER | [Laughs] That is still a possibility. When I hear for sure that it’s not happening, I will let it go myself, and I will spread the word to let it go. But until then… Every time I’ve started to feel like it’s not going to happen, I get a little email from one of the producers of it, saying, “We’re still working on it, so don’t give up.”

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  1. L says:

    Would LOVE a better closure to Gilmore Girls. Loved that show.

  2. C says:

    I wish that Jason Ritter was a regular, I just love him as Mark. His scenes with Lauren continue to be my favourite thing about the show, they have such great chemistry. But I know he’s got other plans/offers etc so I don’t think the P’hood peeps would hold him back from that. Just hope when they inevitably break-up this season it won’t mean the end for his guest apperances on future seasons. Do I sound like a Jason Ritter fan girl or what? Ah well! :)

  3. Lena says:

    Those two are so adorable. The best chemistry on tv. To watch them so newly in love is just so exciting. I always find myself smiling during all their scenes. It will break my heart when/if these two break up.

  4. K says:

    I will be devastated when Sarah and Mark break up. I think it’s inevitable, because of Jason’s new project.
    I really can’t wrap my head around the fact that Mark will most likely be gone at some point.
    It’s a shame, Sarah finally has found a great guy and all, and then the writers have to break them up. I will not mention other things that might happen if someone needs an out of a show…

    Plus, the chemistry between Lauren and Jason is simply amazing. They naturally fit together.

    Again, I will be devastated.

  5. Lisa says:

    Jason Ritter is gross. He can barely grow facial hair. That Musketeer moustache and chin patch is lame.

  6. Copperboom says:


  7. Giusy says:

    Pleeease let’s not compare Gilmore Girls with The event :p …GG lasted 7 seasons and it’s great! I would looove a reunion…
    When Lauren says “Never!” does she mean “there will never be a reunion” or “fans should never move on from the idea of a reunion?”
    I’m confused…

    • Anne says:

      There will NEVER be a Gilmore Girls reunion. Never.

    • lu says:

      The question: at what point should fans move on from …?
      GRAHAM | At the same point that the Gilmore Girls people should – never! (never move on . She knows more than anyone that GG fans will never move on)

  8. Kerry says:

    She means that we should never give up the hopes!!!!

    I like them together, want him to stay as a regular.

  9. says:

    I hope there will be a Gilmore Girls Reunion. it had some of the wittiest quick dialogue on tv in recent times.

  10. PGP says:

    Count me in as wishing Jason Ritter would be a regular. I like Sarah and Mark as a couple. I would love to see a better closure to THE EVENT in the form of a mini-series(same for V), but that is all I want to see. Ritter needs to be a regular 0n Parenthood! Also as much as I enjoyed Gilmore Girls, I could careless about a better closure now, Parenthood is so much more fun. Lauren Grahm, knocks it out of the park as Sarah Braverman and it is a shame that she is not recognized for doing so, same goes to Peter Krause, Monica Potter and the writers….time for Parenthood to be award winning!

  11. Carrie says:

    I really like Jason Ritter. Does anyone remember when he played the older brother on “Joan of Arcadia”? I hope his character sticks around and I really hope Sarah doesn’t choose her ex over him. He’s too adorable. (He should definitely shave, though.)

    • Sue says:

      Yes, I totally remember Jason as the older brother on “Joan of Arcadia!” Wasn’t he in a wheelchair on that show? I think that’s where I first recognized how talented he was and have enjoyed his performances ever since!

  12. kathy says:

    what was the last song played on the episoid on tues nov 1, i’ll still be on my feet, who was the artist

  13. Jim Smollon says:

    I believe the song is “A Case of you” by Joni Mitchell.

  14. Julie Anderson says:

    I love watching Jason act. You can’t help but think of John Ritter and we all know how proud he and Tex Ritter would be. I have enjoyed having John Corbett on the show as well. I can’t help but root for everyone. Lauren does a great job displaying her character’s hesitation to trust or move forward. Great writers on this show- wonderful!

  15. Cindy h says:

    Does anyone know who song the last song on tonight’s episode? And the name? Loved that song

  16. Bob says:

    I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for any reunion stuff. I’m still waiting for a Deadwood movie to wrap things up, a Sopranos movie, a Rome movie. Hmmm…all HBO. It’s just talk to keep the fans going. IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN. Any more than an Arrested Development reunion or a reboot of In Living Color will happen. Wait.

  17. Jason says:

    Guarantee…if Gilmore Girls was revived today, it would be the top-rated series on The CW. There is an undying love for the show and its characters. Man, do I miss Emily and Richard and Babette and Miss Patty and Kirk and Taylor and Sookie and Michel and Jess and Dean and Lane and Charlie and Mrs. Kim and Luke’s kid…and most of all, Rory and Lorelai. One of TV’s all-time great series.

  18. Liz says:

    I can’t help but love the story line between Seth and Sarah. I can relate to the pain and the history…

  19. Melissa says:

    I am so glad Jason Ritter is back on the show, he is one of my favorite! i hope he becomes a regular, their realtionship is so… normal :)

  20. Kylie says:

    I LOVE Jason Ritter! He is so fabulous as Mark, and so good for Sarah. Though did I miss that scene of him meeting the family? Cause I don’t remember it.

    • tahitigirl says:

      I don’t remember it either. Granted, I wasn’t watching closely, but that seems pretty important to have forgotten completely, especially considering Lauren Graham was my main reason for watching this show (I have since learned to love the entire cast).

  21. Art Dracul Clark says:

    These scripts are so redundant and pedantic, I’d rather watch “General Hospital” !

  22. Art Dracul Clark says:

    I’ve tried watching this show, it’s completely boring yuppy garbage to me !

  23. Art Dracul Clark says:

    Life is bad enough because of the jack-asses in this world to have a show like this being filmed and broadcast on tv

  24. Art Dracul Clark says:

    We all know the road to hell is very wide, so I see no need for this crap to be on tv or the actors and actresses involved

  25. Art Dracul Clark says:

    Gilmore Girls was a good show, but this show, obviously,for boring people with pathetic lame lives, is the reason it should be banned from tv, “The Brady bunch” was more exciting than this show !

  26. Art Dracul Clark says:

    We have “punk-ass” terrorist in this world trying to destroy freedom and anything good and healthy, this show portrays dysfunctional negativity, this is not a good influence on America as far as I am concerned.

  27. Alison says:

    I loveeeee parenthood sooooooo much and I love when sarah and mark are all cute and sweet in their sceenes together…DONT BREAK THEM UP… If patenthood was canclled my life would have no meaning.same thing if they break up mark and sarah…..:p …i watch nbc for 1hr before parenthood starts just not to miss anything….it would ne better too if they had reruns …..i am also a younger fan of the show too!…:) alot of my friends r 2 sooo are my friends moms…:) wow I sound kinda obsessive…i amm I.guess…watevs:p…LOVE DA SHOW

  28. Alison says:

    Dont be a.h8r…( hater ) if you have nothimg nice to say then dont say anything…

  29. Alison says:

    if your saying that parenthood is a waste of time…why are you taking the time to tell us that….go waste your time on something else then>:(