"Schitt's Creek" co-creators (and son and father) Dan and Eugene Levy were joined by co-stars Catherine O'Hara and Annie Murphy on "Watch What Happens Live."
In the midst of its final season, the cast of the critically-acclaimed comedic gem "Schitt's Creek" converged on Andy Cohen's clubhouse for a veritable free-for-all discussion about all things Schitt and all things Levy.
The show was conceived by Dan Levy, who developed it with his father Eugene (both are listed as co-creators) and was largely inspired by reality television, with its story of what happens to a wealthy family when they lose everything and have to rebuild their lives from scratch.
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They were joined on "Watch What Happens Live" by Eugene's old "SCTV" scene partner Catherine O'Hara, who plays his wife on the show, and Annie Murphy, who plays their daughter.
A sleeper hit from Canada, airing on Pop TV stateside, "Schitt's Creek" has become a critical darling in its recent seasons, gaining in popularity and viewership even as it closes in on its final episode after six seasons. So why end it? And does that mean we're done forever with the Rose family?
"We didn't want to end it," Dan told Andy. "The show just sort of ended itself." That's something you have to respect, as Dan and Eugene simply decided to go out on their terms when their story was told. That said, Dan is doing more than just leaving the door open for the possiblity of a follow-up.
"I hope that the idea for something substantial comes to me in the next few years and we all get to play again," he said. "'Cause we had so much fun. So I'm gonna go ahead and say yes, let's try and find something to do."
That's fantastic news for "Schitt's Creek" and remarkable, again, for the integrity Dan shows. It would be easy to ride the rising wave of accolades the show is currently receiving into another season or a possible film, but Dan is insistent on waiting until the right idea comes along. And he's not afraid to admit that it isn't there right now.
As for the series itself, everyone agreed that the ending is pretty special, but to avoid spoilers a caller graciously asked them to share what was not going to be seen in it.
Hilariously, Dan had an answer to this strange question. "We workshopped a motel fire," he said of where the Rouse family wound up living after losing their fortune. "Funnily enough, it didn't work out. We didn't end up going with that, kind of a sad ending."
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Schitt's Coming Out
As for what does happen, O'Hara quickly declared that the first and last episodes were collectively her favorites of the series, with Dan ultimately deciding the series finale is the best episode yet. But his close second was the one that is actually Eugene's favorite; the episode where he comes out to his parents.
That led to a discussion of how it went down in real life when Dan came out to his parents, and it went down a lot differently. In fact, Dan's mother was gracious enough to take that stress and anxiety away from him when he was 18 years old.
" I believe it was mom who just actually just said, 'Okay, are you gay?'" Eugene said.
"She did," Dan agreed. "My mom asked me over lunch one day and I said yes. She always knew. My mom and I had a very close relationship in that sense. It almost felt like she knew that I was ready." Both she and Eugene had known for a long time and had determined to wait until he was ready, but Eugene says his wife simply got tired of waiting.
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F*ck yes we did. Shine bright, friends. Very grateful for @poptv and @cbc and their support on this campaign that my teenage self would never have dreamed to be true. ✌🏼❤️😘 pic.twitter.com/FeXqoE8WVv@danjlevy
One of the brightest lights of this whole experience for Dan, and the whole show, is the support they've gotten from their U.S. network, Pop TV. "Ultimately, it just comes down to networks supporting these voices and these stories," he said.
And in a huge show of support, the network threw up a massive, two-story billboard on Sunset Boulevard to promote the sixth and final season of the hit show. It features an intimate kiss between Dan's character David and his on-screen fiance Patrick (Noah Reid).
"I couldn't be more proud of our network in terms of putting those up because most networks would not be putting those billboards up," Dan said. "That's a fact."
Talking about how it was a "big moment" to see that kind of public acceptance of gay love around a show he created is something Dan never would have imagined growing up. That's why he said he pushed so hard for it, and was so grateful to see it come together.
"I think our show has ultimately been an expression of love in all of its iterations and I think to celebrate this last season with a giant two-story billboard of two men kissing on Sunset Blvd. is the most badass move we could have possibly made," he said.
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Finally, Andy Cohen pitted father against son to see just how similar Eugene and Dan were, and the results were pretty on point, with one rather surprising revelation. Who would have thought that Dan was a bad boy growing up.
Or maybe Eugene was overly strict. When asked to rank his strictness on a scale of one to ten, Eugene gave himself a pretty harsh eight, but Dan upped that notably at a nine-and-a-half.
"I was grounded every single weekend," he shared. "And I remember being a kid being like, there are kids on the street doing a ton of drugs. And I just came home like 15 minutes late."
So how did Eugene justify the harshness of his punishmemts? "We had nothing else to do," he said with a shrug.
Maybe this is the next series they should develop together. Call it "The Good Kid" or something. And while they're developing that, maybe that "Schitt's" sequel idea will strike and we can get the movie, too.
Okay, we admit it. We're suffering withdrawals already and the show still has 11 episodes to go.
"Schitt's Creek" airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Pop TV.
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