The boss of ‘The Wonder Years’ always knows how he wanted to reimagine joining the original series – deadline

Spoiler Warning: The following reveals key plot points from Wednesday night’s episode The Wonder Years.

ABC The Wonder Years It has to do with the original series of the 90s, which came out in tonight’s episode titled “Love & War” and it was tough. You can see that scene above.

Anthony Jenkins, Yvonne Orgy, Spence Moore II, Saigon Chengblow, Dulee Hill
Matthew Miller / ABC

In the episode, Dean’s (EJ Williams) older brother Bruce (Spence Moore II) is injured from Vietnam and returns home with a secret — he has a girlfriend, an older woman. While recovering at home, the family wants to know everything about Tommy (Yvonne Orgy), who is later revealed to be a divorced, lonely mother.

Things move fast between Bruce and Tommy, his mother Lillian (Sean Chengblow) and Dean upset. Dean is not ready to share his brother with Tommy’s son Joey, and he is less excited about being his babysitter.

Bruce, a former sports star, is trying to organize his life and is faced with some options. As a black veteran in Alabama in the 1960s, the best job he could get was a guard position that Bruce was frustrated with.

During dinner, it was revealed that Bruce had been given a bronze star for his bravery in battle, and he wanted to put this fact in a drawer. Presently, his challenges and the survivor’s guilt convinced him that he would have to go back to work to support his own family with Tommy.

The Wonder Years

Saigon Chengblow, Yvonne Orgy, Spence Moore II
Erica Dose / ABC

When Bruce proposes, Tommy politely refuses, but they agree to continue dating.

When he returns home, Bruce finally gets a brave medal from his family about what happened in Vietnam. He and his men found themselves at the end of the enemy fire, and the three were already down. He and his friend Brian return to save them, Bruce is wounded and Brian dies.

Bruce said they promised each other that they would write a letter to the other’s family if anything happened. When he finally sits down to communicate with Bryan’s family, it is revealed that Brian is the older brother of Vinnie Cooper (Danica McKeller) who died in Vietnam in the original series.

Series developer and executive producer Saladin K. Patterson spoke to Deadline about the big revelation, how executive producer Fred Savage felt about it, and whether McCeller knew his character was an extension of Vinnie’s story.

Deadline: What insight can you share about the decision to give Bruce this impactful storyline?

Saladin k. Patterson: Lee Daniels, Mark Wells and I talked first about who the Williams family should be and how they should be different from the Arnold family, and decided to shed light on what impact black families have had. A unique way.

We know we want to deal with things like civil rights and the Vietnam War. We decided early on that Bruce would be back, but we wanted to show how hard it was for the black soldiers and the extra luggage they were carrying. Bruce says he felt more racist at home than he was in the military abroad, which is why he re-listed.

But we also wanted to talk about the sacrifices all players make for their minds and their bodies.

Donica McKeller

Donica McKeller
Everett Collection

Timeline: For Bruce the survivor’s guilt leads to a powerful expression.

Patterson: Yes, the big revelation of that chapter is when Bruce shares the survivor’s guilt with his family. It helps to understand why he makes such a shallow decision on the surface as jumping into a relationship.

Having done a tie-in with the original with the Brian Cooper character, I sent it to ABC when we first started the show for Pilot. I said I want to be a part of the Bruce character background and pay homage to the original series.

If anything between our two series is going to be one-on-one or Easter Eg, I thought it would be a very respectable way to tilt my hat to the original. Since Vietnam was the first war in which black soldiers served as leaders of white troops, it also provides a statement to the characters in our world.

Deadline: Do you have any plans to continue Brian’s story?

Patterson: The plan is to keep it a nod for now. We have no plans to overwrite it, but that does not mean it will not happen. For now we want it to live within itself.

Timeline: How did Fred Savage feel about how you combine the two shows?

Patterson: He thought heredity was the most powerful and respectable way to be with one another. Fred and I were both very safe in ensuring this reproduction The Wonder Years Has its own unique storyline and can stand on its own two feet. I don’t want to feel like we reconsidered things Fred did before. But we both get a lot of tone and feel and we both recognize what is best in the original and we wanted to pay homage to it.

We decided early on that there would be no crossover guest stars and things like that, because that would never be true in our world.

Deadline: Did you provoke Donica?

Patterson: Yes we did. Donica has been supporting us since day one. She previously went to Milan Ray, who plays Geisha, to send Baton a metaphor.

So when we found out we were going to make this Easter egg, we approached her to make sure she was right. She immediately said that she felt it was a wonderful idea and was very supportive and very happy that we used her photo.

Deadline: Yvonne Orgy did an amazing job as Bruce’s girlfriend Tommy. Will we see more of her this season?

Patterson: It was great to have Yvonne on the show, she is an amazing actress. She can handle both its basic reality, drama and comedy. We wanted to give her a chance to show off all the tools and skills she brings to her desk. We want to get her back.

Tommy’s character was mentioned again later in the season, but we could not get her back because of the schedule, but we deliberately opened it. They are still in a relationship. We would love for Yvonne to come back in Season 2 and play with us.

The interview has been edited and summarized for length and clarity.

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