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[Warning: This story contains spoilers from the “Home Run” episode of Rookie Blue.]
He may be somebody else’s baby daddy, but Sam Swarek (Ben Bass) is officially ready to commit to Andy McNally (Missy Peregrym). The character went and put an engagement ring on it during Thursday’s “Home Run” episode, after trying to plan the perfect weekend getaway for himself and Andy up at Oliver’s (Matthew Gordon) cabin.
The weekend might not have gone as smoothly as Sam had hoped, but the proposal has been a long time coming for “McSwarek” ‘shippers, making it a perfect moment for viewers.
But will they actually walk down the aisle in what could be the series’ final season? (At press time, ABC had not yet confirmed season seven.) The Hollywood Reporter caught up with showrunner Tassie Cameron to talk all things weddings, the pressure of getting the proposal right and what’s in store during the season’s final stretch.
Why was now the right time for this proposal?
We’ve been thinking about this moment since we started imagining those characters together, from the first episode. It is one of those milestones that you know you might get to if you’re lucky enough to have your series go that long. So there’s a lot of pressure to do it right, and to make it perfect and to make it the most romantic thing ever. That’s why we went in the other direction, which was thematically linked to the theme this season that life isn’t always perfect and it’s not always a fairy tale, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a happy ending. We were trying to explore that theme in this story of the proposal, where everything goes sideways and they still get what they need at the end.
Why the cabin?
We talked about a million ways for the engagement; these are the moments that are going to be YouTube fodder forever, so we have to get it as right as we can. The first time they got together. The first time they kissed. Getting engaged. The watershed moments for this couple. We knew the cabin was the right location for this from the very beginning of season five. Season six used the cabin as a bit of a spine for the couple. They start there before the Marlo (Rachael Ancheril) news hits the fan, where they’re having an idyllic vacation. This is the middle beat of it, and the cabin plays another role later. We always imagined it up there.
Was there any ever talk of doing it on the job?
Sure, they could have been in the middle of a shootout and he could have proposed. They could have been directing traffic and he could have proposed. Doing it on the job would have been very fun, but I think so much of their romance has been on the job that we really liked marking this huge moment by taking them away from the workplace and making it feel special.
Was the drive-by shooting storyline then constructed around that?
Our idea was to have a big “all hands on deck” story happening at 15 Division, and then have Sam and Andy in their own separate storyline, their own separate visual space. So yes, we designed the episode, we designed the a story of the crime around the Sam and Andy proposal.
So is a wedding in the cards for season six?
There are hurdles. But this is a true and heartfelt proposal and we all want to see them get there.
Back at the division things blew up between Gail (Charlotte Sullivan) and Steve (Adam MacDonald). Is that foreshadowing things to come?
It’s showing that not only do they have a complicated family dynamic that we were also trying to mirror in the case of the shooter and the victim, the kind of brother sister thing, but it’s showing that there’s a side of Steve is a little complicated …
Noelle (Melanie Nicholls-King) returned for the episode, will she stick around for a while?
We did a three-episode arc for Noelle. We love her and it’s really a case of as we add new characters every season we just don’t have the screen time for everybody. But then we love them so much that we bring them back for little arcs or for an episode, so we were really happy that she got to come back and do that for us.
Engagements aside, there was a big blow with Oliver at the end. What can you preview about his annual terrible, horrible, no-good day?
It’s maybe worse than you think. It’s maybe his worst day since Oliver Shaw started at 15 Division. Things get really, really messed up at 15 Division. In a way that I hope feels organic and that we’ve laid the tracks for in a way that makes sense.
What can you say about the remaining episodes of the season?
It is as dark and as light as we’ve been at the same time. Which was an interesting challenge to pull off. Things get as messed up as they’ve ever been, but at the same time we’re trying to let our characters be happy. So I don’t know. I hope it comes out as an interesting tunnel mix between real darkness and real lightness.
Rookie Blue airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on ABC. Who do you think the dirty cop is? Will Andy and Sam walk down the aisle? Sound off in the comments below.
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