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American Auto Boss Talks Finale’s Sadie and Jack Development: Their Obstacle Didn’t ‘Feel Real’ Anymore

American Auto Finale Recap
AMERICAN AUTO -- "Judgement Day" Episode 212 -- Pictured: (l-r) Tye White as Jack Fortin, Harriet Dyer as Sadie -- (Photo by: Ron Batzdorff/NBC)
Courtesy of NBC

Warning: The following contains spoilers for Tuesday’s American Auto finale. Proceed at your own risk!

American Auto‘s would-be couple might be done playing the “Will they or won’t they?” game after Tuesday’s season finale.

Thinking they were both going to be out of jobs as Payne Motors struggled to raise its stock price, Jack rather confidently asked out Sadie for a drink, and she agreed to it. But then the company’s future took a turn for the better — consumers actually love the lo-tech Pika car! — so it seemed like Jack and Sadie were no longer going to be taking that next step in their relationship. After all, Sadie has a policy about not dating her colleagues. But Sadie surprised Jack by not backing out of the date. So what changed for the Payne Motors CCO that she was now willing to break her own rule?

Showrunner Justin Spitzer acknowledges that Sadie still “doesn’t like the idea of dating a coworker and what that means to her power in the office and her image in the office,” he says. “She thought she was going to lose her job when Jack asked her out. She said, ‘Yes,’ and she was probably pretty excited about that, and then [when] they got their jobs back, I think she was already in that mindset of, ‘I’m excited. I want to pursue this. And why change that?'”

The show’s writers had a similar epiphany about the Sadie and Jack storyline. “We had been thinking, ‘OK, at the very end of the [episode], they’ll realize that they’re back in business or they still have their jobs, and they’ll just have to put a pin in that relationship. It was like that in the scripts up until near the end,” Spitzer shares.

But then the reason for keeping the twosome apart no longer made sense to the creative team. “We felt like enough kind of pussyfooting around it,” Spitzer says. “This isn’t a situation where one of them is engaged or married to someone else or they don’t know of each other’s feelings. If the obstacle doesn’t feel real to us, it’s not going to feel real to the audience. So let’s just take that next step.”

If there is a Season 3 — the NBC comedy has yet to be renewed or cancelled — “I think there will be hurdles along the way,” Spitzer says, but also notes that he hasn’t mapped out if a potential third season will fully explore a relationship between Jack and Sadie. “I haven’t really thought that much through it other than I think this is a change of some sort.”

The American Auto and Superstore creator also admits that keeping the romantic will they/won’t they dynamic alive on his current series has been much more of a struggle than it was with Superstore‘s eventual endgame couple, Jonah and Amy.

“The Superstore relationship was easier because her obstacle was so much more believable, the fact that she was married,” Spitzer shares. “If anything, I think I’ve learned from this how difficult it is to keep that tension going when it’s two people who like each other and get along and aren’t seeing anybody else. Not that I have regrets about the setup here, but it was more challenging along the last two years than I had expected.”

American Auto Recap

Elsewhere in the finale, Katherine turned out to be an unexpectedly successful CEO, thanks to the surprisingly strong sales for the Pika car, and got to keep her job. With that win in her pocket, “she can start meeting the company in the way she wants to meet it,” Spitzer says. “She can start making her mark, and she can start being more active and less reactive.”

Katherine maintaining her position at Payne is “good, but it’s not just the status quo. We go into the future with her…really now being able to flex her muscles in a way the character would not have been able to until now,” Spitzer adds.

American Auto fans, what did you think of the season ender? Grade it below, then hit the comments!


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