8:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Parenthood's' Ray Romano on Hank's Surprise Move
[Warning: This story contains spoilers from the 100th episode of NBC's Parenthood, "How Did We Get Here?"]
NBC's Parenthood delivered its most gut-wrenching, emotional roller-coaster of an hour Thursday when, during its 100th episode, the Bravermans gathered to support Zeek and Camille after his heart attack.
While much of the hour was dedicated to Zeek's (Craig T. Nelson) health crisis — he's stable but may not opt for additional (and risky) surgery to prolong his life — Jason Katims' NBC drama delivered a surprise baby shower for Amber (Mae Whitman) and an shocking question for her mother, Sarah (Lauren Graham).
After seeing Joel (Sam Jaeger) and Kristina (Monica Potter) support the family, Hank (Ray Romano) realized he wanted to be all-in as well and, outside hospital entrance, asked Sarah to marry him.
"I was surprised. I don't mind it, but I thought for sure they were going to have some kind of mutual understanding that they love each other, but just should just have a friendship together," Romano told The Hollywood Reporter during a set visit with the proposal scene.
While Romano thought Hank and Sarah — who originally split up after he moved back to Minnesota to be closer to daughter Ruby — would only be friends, the actor says Hank's proposal makes sense for the duo.
"I don't mind it going this way. I like how they did [the proposal] in a way where it's not conventional and it seems right for Hank. So I buy it. But I was surprised when I saw it," he said.
"The whole episode, Hank's trying to be helpful and trying to fit in and he keeps seeing he's just not quite part of Sarah's world in that sense," Romano said. "And he feels like he's outside of it all. The whole Zeek thing is getting him to feel like, 'I wanna be her guy.' He wants her to rely on him and wants to be there for her."
Of course Hank's proposal came not long in the show's timeline after Sarah bumped into her all-too-perfect ex, Mark (Jason Ritter).
"In the Mark scene, Hank may have questioned whether Sarah was happy with him or not — and maybe it makes him want to try harder," he says.
While Romano was tight-lipped about how Sarah would respond, the actor expressed hope that his potential Parenthood wedding wouldn't be overdone. "Hank's Italian, and they like to go big — I know that from experience. I don't want any doves flying around!"
Were you surprised by Hank's proposal? How do you think Sarah should respond? Hit the comments below with your thoughts. Parenthood airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on NBC.