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‘Suits’ Creator Aaron Korsh Changed the Season 8 Finale (That Harvey and Donna Hookup!) at the Last Minute (Exclusive)

Darvey lives! Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht) and Donna Paulsen (Sarah Rafferty) finally did the deed on Suits after years of teasing their feelings for each other, but their hookup almost didn’t happen.

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“More often than not, we end the season differently than I thought we were going to. Because when I get there, I have an instinctual thing. It felt right on one level, and when we got there, it doesn’t feel right anymore. We’ll take a left turn,” series creator Aaron Korsh told Us Weekly exclusively at the Television Critics Association press tour in January. “[Episode] 8×16 ends very differently. We got on a plane to go off to Toronto to write it. Even two days before we shot it, I thought it was going to end differently.”

He elaborated: “[The writers] got into a big argument, discussion. Night or two before, we were like, ‘What if [we did] this?’ And we did it.”

Harvey Specter Donna Paulsen Hook Up Suits
Harvey Specter and Donna Paulsen in Suits. USA Network

Harvey realized his feelings for his former legal secretary after he almost lost his license due to an ethics violation during the season 8 finale, which aired on Wednesday, February 27. He raced to her apartment, where the two locked eyes and, without saying a word, started making out. The steamy session led to Donna taking Harvey back to her bedroom as the episode concluded.

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Korsh revealed in an interview with TVLine published on Wednesday that the hookup was, in fact, the moment the writers added at the last minute.

USA Network announced in January that the drama was renewed for a ninth and final season. The farewell lap will consist of 10 episodes.

As the series heads into hiatus, fans are left to wonder where Harvey and Donna will stand when the show returns. After all, they slept together once years prior, kissed in season 7 and frequently make heart-eyes at each other, but the pair have never actually made their way into a relationship.

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According to Korsh, though, the duo are headed toward romance in season 9. “We’re going to follow their growth. If you want to say they’ve had these feelings that they repressed or were unable to communicate for all these years, [then Donna and Harvey are] not the world’s best communicators with each other, and they’re going to have to learn how to do that,” he told TVLine. “When you’re in a relationship with someone, learning how to communicate with them is probably the most important key to success.”

The executive producer continued: “They’re going to have to learn how to handle their issues in a relationship the way people do, the way couples do, and we’re going to see that. It’s not going to be the highlight of every single episode, but I would say it will be there in pretty much every episode. We’re going to explore how they handle this newfound relationship.”

Another roadblock that stands to throw a wrench in the budding coupling? Donna is technically still with Thomas Kessler (Sasha Roiz). Korsh explained that a breakup scene was scrapped from the final cut of the hour, leaving the characters “something to deal with” in season 9.

When he spoke to Us in January, the writer was unsure of how the series would wrap up. “I’m not even there yet in my idea of where I want it to end,” he explained at the time. “I’m positive that we have a broad sketch, but we haven’t filled in the details. That’s the thing: Once you start filling in the details, you change things.”

Suits will return to USA Network this summer.

With reporting by Emily Longeretta

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