Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (2024)


Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (1)

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Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (2)

Editor's Note: The below interview contains major spoilers for the 9-1-1 Season 7 finale.

The Big Picture

  • A major departure from 9-1-1 will drastically affect Eddie in the coming season.
  • Eddie's complex romantic entanglements cause turmoil not only with himself but with his son, Christopher.
  • A major leadership change will likely reshape Eddie's character in Season 8.

It's been a wild ride in this shortened season of 9-1-1. With only 10 episodes, the ABC series has packed so much into its time and has left us all on the edge of our seats with a plethora of plot twists. Season 7 already started off with a wild storyline featuring Athena (Angela Bassett) and Bobby's (Peter Krause) honeymoon cruise gone awry, but the drama only got dialed up from there. From Buck (Oliver Stark) coming out and dating Tommy (Lou Ferrigno Jr.) to Hen (Aisha Hinds) losing her foster daughter to a vengeful councilwoman, the season hasn't let off the gas at all. Barreling toward the finale, we got another huge surprise in the form of the reappearance of a familiar face. After encountering a veritable doppelgänger of his dead wife, Shannon (Devin Kelley), Eddie (Ryan Guzman) begins something akin to an emotional affair with her while dating Marisol (Edy Ganem). This bizarre relationship culminates in a shocking reveal when Eddie is found by both Marisol and his son, Christopher (Gavin McHugh), crying in doppelgänger Kim's arms.

From there, things only get worse, as Christopher gives his dad the silent treatment, and Eddie soon finds himself face-to-face with his parents, who have flown in from Texas specifically at Christopher's request. Despite Eddie and Buck's best efforts, Christopher ends the season leaving for Texas with his grandparents and leaves a devastated Eddie behind. Collider spoke with Guzman about the finale to get his take on the situation, including Christopher's departure, his relationship with Gavin McHugh, and Eddie's complicated romantic history. Guzman also discusses the storylines he might want to pursue and the biggest plot twist of the finale, which leaves the 118 in the hands of Captain Gerrard (Brian Thompson) rather than Bobby's, promising a drama-filled Season 8.

Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (3)




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Christopher's Departure Was One of the Biggest Shocks of the '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale

COLLIDER: I'm still reeling a bit from that finale. So, the first big shock: Christopher leaving. Did that come as a shock to you, or were you guys building towards this the entire time? What was your reaction to it when you heard that this was the path that we were going down?

RYAN GUZMAN: Massive shock. We are always kind of the last to know, as far as the actors, we get handed our scripts a little later than we'd like, but, at the same time, everything that we get handed is incredible. So, I remember getting handed that version of what was going to happen towards the end of the season. And I think I said, "Holy sh*t!" [Laughs] I remember having this conversation, actually, with Tim [Minear] and just saying how much I love it, and the fact that you know, no one's going to see this coming, because, for the longest time, that relationship with Christopher and Eddie has been the most stable thing in Eddie's life. Take that away from Eddie, now what? Who is Eddie, and how does he react? So, no, I did not see this coming, but I'm here for it.

Can you give me a little insight into what Gavin's reaction was? Did you guys talk it over? That final goodbye between you two was so emotional. What was it like filming that? Did you discuss that scene with him?

GUZMAN: No, not really. Gav is… I love him to death, because he's kind of unaware at the same time and aware at the same time. He plays both. For instance, we were rehearsing, and as I'm saying some of the lines, he looks into my eyes, and he goes, "You're very serious." [Laughs] I go, "Yeah, buddy, this is a serious scene." And he goes, "Oh, that's right, yeah, I'm leaving." So it was like a moment-by-moment basis of him understanding the truth of the scene. And, yeah, we had fun with it.

Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (4)

What has it been like watching Gavin grow up, working with him over the years, and seeing him progress as an actor?

GUZMAN: Yeah, technically, he was my first son. I had him before I had my own.

[Laughs] Don't tell your son that!

GUZMAN: No. [Laughs] Is it my first? Yeah, first on-screen son. I think that might be right? But for me, it's always been kind of crazy to think about. I was trying things out via Eddie and Christopher before I got the opportunity to try it out on my own son. So I'm very, very grateful for that and very thankful for what I've learned through the characters. But watching Gavin grow up, it's "pinch me" moments a lot of the time. It's just like, "Whoa, you're 14 now!" How tall are you again? And now his vernacular has changed. The way he carries himself has changed. I remember a little shy kid, and now he's more outspoken, and his personality is thriving. So, it's just a crazy thing to understand that we've been together for six years, going on seven now, and I've seen a good portion of his life unfold right in front of me.

Even when he was speaking in the episode, I was like, "Oh, I think his voice is changing."

GUZMAN: It's getting deeper, right? Next year, he's gonna come back with a mustache. [Laughs]

Eddie Has Had a Lot of Issues in the Romance Department on '9-1-1'

So, this Kim storyline, when it first started, was one of the biggest soap opera storylines. But after everything that's happened, will we see Kim again? Or has Eddie already gotten the closure that he needs from that relationship? Is this something that's going to continue to linger?

GUZMAN: I've said this so many times before, I'll say it again. I love working with Devin [Kelley], and she's an incredible person to act opposite of. So I do hope that they bring her back in some version, whether it's another ghost version of Shannon, or maybe we bring Kim into the therapy session with his therapist. There's so much to be explored. I think we've just started, and we've hit the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Eddie healing from the loss of Shannon. So who knows? We'll see what Tim writes.

When I spoke to you earlier this season, you said the idea of replacing Shannon is something that's really stagnated Eddie in his relationships. We saw that with Kim and Marisol, and how that impeded his growing relationship with Marisol. Is this a moment that you think Marisol is willing to forgive, or is she like, "Okay, this is too far. This is too weird. It's not worth it"?

GUZMAN: I would like to throw that question out to the world, especially to the women of the world. Would you forgive a man that did this? Because it's my assumption that you wouldn't, and I would have a hard time if the roles were flipped to forgive my significant other and catching them crying into the arms of another person. You'd have to have a sense of mercy and empathy that is unheard of nowadays. So, knowing that she is a former nun, maybe she does that, but I wouldn't fault her if she didn't, and she just moved on.

Looking back at Eddie's relationships, we've seen Eddie change his opinion of Shannon after her death. He's romanticizing this relationship, and they weren't really great for each other. They were good together as parents, but they were not good as a couple. What are your thoughts on how Eddie's opinion of Shannon has changed after her death, and how it affects his relationship with Christopher and his relationship with other women?

GUZMAN: Yeah, he's definitely reformatted the truth of the relationship in a way that kind of is… just this complete dream. He's forgotten all the worst parts of that relationship. And he's exploring this, I would say, idealization of what love was supposed to be, so using that as the backdrop for what love is now for him, i.e. Marisol and him, it has helped him in ways where he said, "You know, I think we should take this slower," and "I don't want to make the same mistakes I did in the past." But it also has hurt him, because he's still basing it off a very shaky foundation and an untrue foundation.

Coming into Season 8, I would love to have Eddie explore more of what he just started in this deconstruction of what love is and find a little bit more self-love for himself, to understand that I got to move past what I thought Shannon and I were going to be, and I got to fall in love with who I am right now, and soon as I do that, then the partner that's meant for me will find themselves and find me at the same time.


'9-1-1' Will Never Be Able To Top Its Biggest Disaster

The cruise arc might have been massive in scope, but nothing will ever top the series' best disaster arc.

Which '9-1-1' Stories Were Lost to the Strikes and Which Stories Have Yet To Be Told?

Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (6)

I know the season was shortened due to the strikes. Now that the season is over, can you talk about any of the storylines that were shortened or cut, and anything that you wish you'd gotten to see?

GUZMAN: Really can't, to be honest; that writer's room is heavy at work at all times. We get handed the scripts at a moment's notice, a lot of the time, and what we're handed, again, is gold. That being said, we're kept in the dark a lot of the time. So, it's fun; at the same time, it's just like, okay, we're finding out the same time as the audience, like, "What is going to happen with Eddie?"

Sounds like a rollercoaster.

GUZMAN: Yeah, it's all a rollercoaster, but you trust the process. And I love that, the fact that they've got so much trust in us to understand that we can deliver what they want.

Are you interested in exploring any other aspects of Eddie's past? We see his parents again in this finale, but he also has sisters and other family members. Are you interested in diving into that aspect of his life?

GUZMAN: Yeah, I think to rebuild, you have to kind of go backward. So I would love to see the sisters come back into play, because we haven't seen them since, I don't know, Season 4, 3? I can't remember. I would love to see their input. I would love to see new takes on who Eddie is through newer perspectives. But I don't necessarily really hope to see flashbacks. I hope to see the past being the present and a lot of that. Versions of Eddie struggling with representations of the past.

Gerrard's Arrival Could Turn Eddie Into a Different Person on '9-1-1'

Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (7)

So, the other big twist in this episode, which actually had me gasping, is Gerrard coming in as captain of the 118. What was your reaction? What was the cast's reaction to that reveal when you guys first found out?

GUZMAN: sh*t. [Laughs] I haven't gotten to know, actually, on a real level... I don't know Brian [Thompson] too well. He's an incredible actor. I've seen him on plenty of other things, but from what we know of the Gerrard story, he's an oppressive force, and he's got an old-school mentality that has no open-mindedness about him at all. What that does to a very vulnerable and open 118 is going to be very tricky, and it's going to change the landscape for how the 118 navigates. So, each individual will have their own variation of how they cope with this newfound leader or captain. Eddie, from what I know of Eddie... he does like to fall back on what he knows. And what he might know is to kind of repress emotions. If he sees a man that's representing his time in the military, then maybe he goes back into the idea that, "Okay, emotions are bad. Let me just get the job done."

No! That's the opposite of what we want to happen with this character right now!

GUZMAN: I know, I know, but it makes for great TV. [Laughs]

Where Will Eddie Go After This on '9-1-1'?

Ryan Guzman Thinks Moving on After That '9-1-1' Season 7 Finale Requires "Destroying Eddie" (8)

Are there any storylines that you're interested in exploring for Eddie in the future? Obviously, getting Christopher back is key, but is there anything that you've always wanted to explore from Eddie's life?

GUZMAN: I think the self-love realm is something interesting for me, giving him, maybe in Season 8, the opportunity to really understand himself better and fall in love with himself and, not in a selfish way, but understand his qualities of value. That way, maybe in Season 9, he's able to really live a fulfilled life and showcase a new version of himself that Christopher can actually lean on in a safer and healthier way. I think that that entails a lot of destroying Eddie. Because, again, you can't build on a shaky foundation, so you have to destroy that foundation and rebuild, and that's a painful process in itself. If you've never been the one to really engage in that area, it's not going to be fun. And for Eddie, it's going to be… I know how to lean on certain individuals in the 118, but now Cap's not here, and Buck can't really help me with the situation. How do I handle this myself? What have I learned, and how can I apply this?

After this entire season, seeing it and how it all played out, is there a specific storyline that isn't Eddie's that you thought was particularly compelling?

GUZMAN: Yeah, Hen's stuff with the kid, like, that was rough! That whole storyline is intense, because, obviously, we're talking about somebody who lost their own son due to, not even Hen's fault, but, you know, an action that caused the loss of this woman's son. And now this vengeful woman is taking away something from Hen that she's been fighting for for so long. That whole scene was rough to watch. Getting them pulled away from each other, and her having to then sit down and say, "I'll still be here no matter what. I'm still your mom." I can't wait to see what happens in Season 8 with that.

Catch the Season 7 finale of 9-1-1 tomorrow on Hulu.

Watch on Hulu

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