The characters of Russell (David Spade) and Timmy (Adhir Kalyan) have had a tumultuous relationship at best on CBS’ sitcom Rules of Engagement. Though Timmy is Russell’s assistant, at times he is more often treated like a little brother—to be picked on, to take a backseat to his girlfriend of the week, and to be tasked with doing the dirty work when things go south with said girlfriends. And this season, Russell even takes credit for some of Timmy’s work.
“Timmy writes a speech; I steal it and put in the paper, and then I get a lot of praise for it, but I refuse to acknowledge I stole it from him. And then they hire me to go give speeches and do a Q&A about it, but of course I’m too moronic to know what I’m talking about. I use it to scout for women. I ask the moderator to pull chicks for the after party. It’s really classic, stupid Russell,” Spade teased a big episode of season seven when we were on set last year.
Yet, Timmy still stays in the job and the friendship, making their relationship the third couple on the show, even if a completely platonic one. Does that make him fiercely loyal or just a fierce masochist?
“The breaking point should have come and gone by this point, so they must have something pretty extraordinary,” Kalyan admitted. “It’s like an abusive relationship where ‘No, as long as you promise me it will never happen again, I’ll stay.’ And then it keeps on happening.”
“It is horrible. I am Chris Brown, but Rihanna still loves him,” Spade chuckled. “They’re going to get married, and at the wedding, he’ll be like ‘Do you promise to love, honor, and obey?’ And he’ll go ‘You heard me: obey'.”
But in all seriousness, Russell may know, deep down, just how good he has it with Timmy. In another key episode in this upcoming season, Timmy takes a vacation, and while he is away Russell reaches out—to a girl who just happens to look exactly like Timmy.
“It’s pretty weird undertones. Listen, we have thirteen left, so we’re going for it!” Spade said.
Both stars admitted that the finale should probably culminate in Timmy quitting the job once and for all, though Kalyan said it didn’t have to be a big screaming match scene or completely contentious argument between the two. He wanted the character to quit the job, but not walk out of Russell’s life forever. Their pitch for how it should go out on a heavy, but still heartfelt note?
As Spade put it: “Timmy and I have a big fight, and he quits, and I’m sad the whole episode, and I go to Italy. The last shot is me sitting down at breakfast; I look over, and I see Timmy sitting there-- like the end of The Dark Knight. I nod at him, and I walk away, and I know that he’ll be all right.”
Rules of Engagement returns to CBS on February 4th 2013. What say you, Rules of Engagement fans: how do you want to see Timmy and Russell’s relationship evolve in these next episodes? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
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