Parenthood Post Mortem: Is Happily Ever After Ahead for 'Ryber'? Plus, More Season 5 Scoop

Parenthood - Season 5Are you still with us, Parenthood fans? Need a few more minutes to dry your eyes? Take all the time you need. We’ll just be over here with Season 5 premiere reactions — and scoop on what’s ahead — from stars Mae Whitman, Peter Krause and Sam Jaeger, as well as showrunner Jason Katims.

SOON-TO-BE WEDDED BLISS | Romantics at heart, rejoice: “Ryber” is engaged! Amber spends most of the premiere questioning her relationship with Army vet Ryan — who was deployed over the hiatus — but her doubts are put to rest when, in one epic, emotional moment, they are reunited. What’s more, he’s back with a ring and proposal! (She says yes, duh.)

Of the rather sudden engagement storyline, Katims jokes, “Mae told me to do it!” More seriously, the EP recalls, “When we brought Matt on and started the storyline last season, it was something we thought about as something that would be a few episodes… [But] I just found that the chemistry between them is so great. The work that Matt had done to prepare for the role, the idea of what was going on in [Ryan’s] past, felt so real that it’s something we wanted to continue to explore.” Whitman, for her part, couldn’t be more excited about Ryan and Amber’s marital plans. “Amber’s changed so much [over the seasons], and it’s such a gift to be on a TV show where the changes stick and people grow; you actually really feel like these people have learned things.” Noting that “last year was one of the first years we got to see Amber really happy,” the actress “loved the idea of her having a partner… The idea of Amber and Ryan being something that stuck and lasted and connected, it’s beautiful and great to watch.”

PHOTOS | Fall TV Spoiler Spectacular: Exclusive Scoop on Parenthood and 44 Returning Favorites

OBSTACLES BEFORE THE ALTAR | As is often the case for the Braverman brood, the newly betrothed twosome won’t have an easy road ahead. “That’s exactly the story that we wanted to tell, the story where you have these two people who clearly love each other and are so right for each other, but that they’re very young,” Katims teases. “There are definitely things in Ryan’s past, and Amber’s past for that matter, that make it not be cut-and-dried that this is the right thing to do, and there are people in the family who start to question that and bring up those points… When you have people with very different opinions who are both right, who both have very good points, those always seem like the strongest stories for this kind of show.”

Look for Sarah, in particular, to take issue with the impending nuptials, shares the showrunner, who notes that he missed the Sarah/Amber dynamic last season. “This was a way to bring those two back together; if you’ve got to plan a wedding, there’s going to be scenes together — and they’re not all going to be happy scenes. And similarly, I thought there’d be opportunities for Ryan to have scenes that are not just with Amber.” However, adds the ever-optimistic Whitman, “Obviously there will be issues, but I think it’s nice anytime [Ryan and Amber] get to be around each other and spend time together and make up for lost time.”

HALTED HANK-Y PANKY | Katims reveals that “Sarah will eventually get involved in Hank’s storyline, and it will develop again over time,” but for now, the latter will continue to spend time with young Max. “We were charmed by the idea of Max and Hank together,” he shares. “It made sense to us and seemed believable to me.”

VIDEO | Parenthood Season 5 Spoilers — Hank and Max Form a Friendship

FOR PETE’S SAKE | “On any other show, [Sonya Walger’s Pete and Joel] would be making out wildly in her second appearance,” Jaeger laughs. Instead, Pete’s already worrisome presence “is just something that feels natural and it feels lived in… We’ll see [Joel and Julia’s marriage] be tested, but not in an obvious way. It’s just a relationship that’s starting to fray a little bit.”

THE MAYOR’S MAN | Krause has an explanation for Adam’s hesitance about Kristina’s choice to run for mayor: “He wants to be supportive of his wife, but he also wants to be careful with her health. It’s a big decision and, from his point of view — probably from Kristina’s, too, if she’s honest with herself — slightly unrealistic. But he’s fueled by having had some contact with mortality.” Adds Katims, Kristina’s career change “affects Adam… his own life and what he’s doing. That comes up later in the season, with him at work.”

Thoughts on Parenthood’s more-joyful-than-usual premiere? Hit the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Keith says:

    Ryber ? Really – can’t we just call them Ryan and Amber

  2. Guess we can forget what happened in Season Two about the infamous car crash Amber was referring to. After all the men she has trouble with in the past, Amber definitely found Mr. Right in Ryan aka Matt Lauria (Luke Cafferty from FNL). Also, what’s going to happen between the continuing relationship between Sarah and Hank and are Julia and Joel begin to fall apart?

  3. Monica says:

    Where was Hattie? Unless I missed it somehow, there was no mention of her…hum! You’re failing at being a family-oriented ensemble show if you ignore one of the children…

    • Haddie isn’t coming back for real now that the character is heading back to college. Parenthood won’t be the same without Haddie aka Sarah Ramos.

    • Carm says:

      Hattie was written out when she left for college season before last. She showed up a few times last season.

    • Alex says:

      Her name is actually Haddie.As said, she went to college, which was explained last season very clearly. In fact, at one point Haddie came back from college after she learned that her mother had cancer. She then returned to school. You fail at being a fan and at criticizing the show when you don’t know what you’re talking about! LOL.

      TPTB have said that Haddie might make an occasional guest appearance at some point, but who knows if it will happen.

  4. icequeen33 says:

    I loved the episode, and I’m already looking forward to next week’s show. It did a good job tying up loose ends from last season, and I like the direction it appears to be taking this season. I especially like the portrayal of Max. It’s spot on in its depiction of an autism spectrum disorder.

  5. Superhero says:

    Enjoyed the few Hank and Max scenes that we got last season, so I’m quite happy that they’re giving us more of that.

  6. Joey says:

    The season premiere was good. Glad to see Hank anc Max bond so well. Glad Ryan and Amber are back together after his service at The Army.

  7. Britta Unfiltered says:

    Okay, yeah, I did cry a bit when Ryan proposed to Amber. But can we not try to make the term “Ryber” happen? :) I get a little sick of the name squishing. Maybe I’m alone in this. It’s good to see Hank is still part of the show. Sometimes that guy says lines where I’m like, “Get out of my head, Parenthood writers!”

  8. Arien says:

    I don’t want to see Sonya Walger on that show. period. I just don’t, especially not in a plot where she screws with Joel.
    The Hank scenes were great – loved the Adam/Hank interaction. And the Zeek wisdom in the beginning was gold.

  9. Chablis says:

    Ryber — please…..—let it go.

  10. Sharon says:

    It would have gotten better ratings if they hadn’t started on the night GA came back with a two hour opener. I missed it, as I’m a huge GA fan, and they left with a cliff hanger last season. Too many good shows all on Thursday night for that matter!! LOL No DVR here!

    • Moo Juice says:

      I’m not sure about that. Scandal is a hotter shot than Grey’s. It probably would have done the same without the two hour Grey’s.

    • Marianne Henderson says:

      Then go to Parenthood online & watch it WITHOUT THE LONG COMMERCIALS like I did since I went to bed early.

  11. Robin says:

    I so love this show! I am very much looking forward to this season. I love Amber and Ryan together! The proposal was so sweet! She was so excited/nervous/anxious to see him. Those two have such great chemistry together too! I like all the storylines they have started. Crosby was hilarious last night too! Especially that car scene with Adam and Crosby!
    If there is indeed a Amber and Ryan wedding later this season, I think Hattie would return for that.

  12. Mel says:

    Love this show! So glad it is back on the air. I hope it does well in this time slot. It is truly one of the only shows that I look forward to every week. Great writing, great acting!

  13. Evan says:

    I already see myself getting ready to rag on Julia like I find myself giving Max a hard time. We’ll see if she should really have to worry about Joel while all she really does is mope about the fact she made the decision to be more of a mother and obviously hates it and will now for some unknown reason resent Joel that it’s his turn to be the breadwinner.

  14. Marianne says:

    If you love Parenthood like I do, join Parenthood Group in Facebook.

  15. Karen says:

    I love Amber and Ryan together so happy and excited for them, and hoping it lasts!

  16. Thamare says:

    I really want the Amber and Ryan storyline to go away. He is a loser!

  17. JJ says:

    Does anyone know the song/artist that played when Amber and Ryan reunited?

  18. Dorie says:

    I just feel like we watch the show for the intelligent writing. Don’t treat us as unintelligent now…Haddie is off at college, not dead! The family would still refer to her now and again in real life- when Adam and Christina were discussing the budget for the campaign, they could have mentioned how Haddies tuition, expenses, whatever had to be taken into consideration. Or maybe Christina might say in passing, I told Haddie about the campaign, she can’t believe it..amber could’ve had a pretend phone call with her to tell her she’s engaged…I don’t know, just make some small reference now and again! You’ve convinced us the Bravermans are a “real” family, you’ve just got to follow through.

  19. Marcia says:

    my husband and I have been devoted fans to the television show parenthood since it first began. What we absolutely cannot understand is why I Haddie is never mentioned. how can a family that close completely forget about their daughter and granddaughter? It absolutely makes no sense. Please correct this mistake.the rest of the show is fantastic!