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9-1-1’s Ryan Guzman Says Eddie and Buck Are ‘Stronger Than Ever’ After ‘Vulnerable’ Coming Out Scene

9-1-1 star Ryan Guzman promises that Eddie and Buck will only grow closer throughout season 7 now that Buck has been honest about his sexuality.

“I think the ultimate goal was to show that the connection between Buck and Eddie will remain, and that is going to be stronger than ever,” Guzman, 37, exclusively told Us Weekly. “Because now we’ve unveiled this new vulnerable side of Buck, and last season we got to unveil this new side vulnerable side of Eddie. So the connection is just that much more muy sympatico.”

During the Thursday, April 11, episode of the ABC series, titled “You Don’t Know Me,” Buck (Oliver Stark) struggles to find a way to be honest with Eddie (Guzman) about his bisexuality. After a few failed attempts, he finds the right words and they share an emotional moment, where Eddie promises that “nothing” will change between the two longtime best friends.

Guzman told Us that he pulled from his own life experience when figuring out how to approach the scene as Eddie after facing a similar situation in his own.

9 1 1 s Evan Buck Buckley and Eddie Diaz s Relationship Timeline From Strangers to Family 336

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“I had a friend of mine years and years ago come out to me and kind of have an evolution of himself, and I saw that as the same thing for this scene,” he explained. “It’s just like, ‘Oh my God, this guy is doing an incredibly brave thing in front of someone that he doesn’t know how they’ll handle this situation.’”

Guzman noted that Eddie’s ultimate goal is to give Buck a “safe space” to feel “loved and heard.” He also, however, wanted to lean into a certain level of surprise considering Buck has only dated women throughout the course of the show.

“I wanted to play in the shock and awe of his coming out because all Buck has presented to us is this guy that likes to sleep around and has a new girlfriend every two months,” he said. “So there was so many great things to play off of it.”

9-1-1’s Ryan Guzman Says Eddie and Buck Will Be ‘Stronger Than Ever’ After ‘Vulnerable’ Coming Out Scene
Ryan Guzman as Eddie and Oliver Stark as Buck on ‘9-1-1.’ Disney/Chris Willard

Eddie, of course, was faced with his own difficult conversation in episode 5. After asking girlfriend Marisol (Edy Ganem) to move in, he backs up his offer in hopes of slowing things down between them. It’s a “proud” moment for Eddie, Guzman said, who has made a habit of moving too fast in his previous relationships.

“I think so many times Eddie has gotten in his way of seeing something, getting really excited about it and being, like, let’s go full tilt into it, let’s get married tomorrow, which is Eddie’s issue,” he explained. “So not trying to fill this void that [his late ex-wife] Shannon left with somebody with just anybody, I think is a big growth moment for Eddie.”

There’s also the matter of Eddie’s son, Christopher (Gavin McHugh), and recognizing that Eddie’s choices don’t just affect him. “He needs to understand who he’s dealing with before he invites them into this very convoluted life,” he continued. “And I think first and foremost is what it will do for Christopher. He’s always got Christopher on the front end of his mind.”

9-1-1’s Ryan Guzman Says Eddie and Buck Will Be ‘Stronger Than Ever’ After ‘Vulnerable’ Coming Out Scene
Disney/Chris Willard

For Guzman, the decision shows “growth” for his character, who he feels leaves the episode feeling “hopeful” about his romantic future. Whether that is with Marisol remains to be seen, but Guzman told Us he “loved” getting to play an overly-stressed-out Eddie who can’t come to terms with dating someone who makes him feel like he “just slept with God.”

A more lighthearted Eddie is something Guzman is enjoying in general. After six seasons leaning into the “traumatic” aspects of Eddie’s life, the actor said he can “finally relax a little bit” and play up the humor. It’s something he believes is possible because of the character’s strong relationships and sense of “community.”

“I mean Bobby (Peter Krause) and Buck, [those are] his two rocks,” Guzman said. “So allowing Eddie to be vulnerable in front of them and share his story and getting a safe space has given me as the actor and Eddie as the character, the opportunity to just be lighthearted and have a little bit more fun. And I think that’s his mindset now is just, like, how do we turn the frown upside down?”

That deep connection to Buck is something many fans are hopeful will one day be taken to the next level. Guzman, for his part, is entirely aware there are legions of viewers who want to see the two men get together, and completely understands why the Buck and Eddie dynamic means so much to so many.

9-1-1’s Ryan Guzman Says Eddie and Buck Will Be ‘Stronger Than Ever’ After ‘Vulnerable’ Coming Out Scene
Ryan Guzman as Eddie on ‘9-1-1.’ Disney/Chris Willard

“I think the audience loves those two characters specifically, because of how they play off each other,” noting that the duo “mirrored” each other in a lot of ways when Guzman first joined the cast in season 2. “And to show the evolution of both characters and [them] getting closer and closer, I think the vulnerability, the ability to lean on each other at their worst moments has really connected them in a way where the audience now kind of puts themselves in that relationship.”

Whether Buck and Eddie will turn from friends to lovers is unknown, but Guzman said he’s “here for” wherever the writers want to take the story — as long as what makes Buck and Eddie special remains intact along the way.

“Whatever happens between the characters happens, but I think the sanctity of that vulnerability is what needs to be kept, and the connection,” he explained. “Whatever happens with Buck finding if he wants to explore this route [with his sexuality] even further or not, that connection maintains itself.”

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For now, Guzman is thrilled that people are creating their own story lines for Buck and Eddie, and feeling connected to the onscreen duo. He’s even read some of the fanmade work and is extremely impressed with what people have come up with.

“I’ve seen it all. Me and Oliver have fun with that. We like to look into it and say, ‘Oh, OK, well this is the new story line,’ he quipped. “I think somebody just wrote a couple [fake] scenes for episode 5, and I read them and was like, ‘Wow, it kind of seems like [showrunner] Tim Minear wrote this.’”

“I love that,” he said, smiling. “I love all the fandom.”

9-1-1 airs on ABC Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET.

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