There’s nothing like a great TV wedding. I’ve been very fortunate to have watched more than a few of my favorite TV couples get married onscreen, and there’s no better feeling as a devoted fangirl than watching a couple you’ve rooted for through all of their ups and downs finally get that perfect wedding episode.
Some of my favorite TV episodes of all time are wedding episodes because they are instant doses of happiness I can come back to whenever I need it. They’re reminders to never stop hoping and believing in happy endings (or, really, happy beginnings), and I love stories that make me feel hopeful and happy.
This week, I was lucky enough to get to watch another one of my favorite television couples—Rick Castle and Kate Beckett—tie the knot in an excellent episode of Castle.
The joy I felt watching their vows on Monday made me want to reflect back on my other favorite TV weddings.
Leslie and Ben (Parks and Recreation)
I’ve talked about this wedding so many times, but I feel like I can never talk about it enough. I’m not sure any moment I’ve ever watched on television has made me as happy as this wedding. It’s my go-to episode when I’m in need of some TV comfort food, and I still cry happy tears every time I watch it. Every detail was perfect—from the location and the dress to the beautiful vows and the clips that accompanied them, reminding us of the journey these two characters took to get to this place where they could both so beautifully say, “I love you and I like you.”
Chuck and Sarah (Chuck)
Chuck Bartowski is literally my perfect man: He’s nerdy and warm and big-hearted and looks exactly like Zachary Levi. But the real reason why I love him as much as I do is because of the way he loved Sarah, with a kind of honest, sincere devotion that she gave right back to him, too. The “practice vows” scene of their wedding episode will always hold a special place in my heart because of the sweet simplicity of Sarah’s vows—and because of the awestruck way Levi played Chuck’s reaction to them. And then Chuck’s vows were also made more perfect because of the reaction to them; Yvonne Strahovski trying to hold back tears only made me cry harder. And, like Leslie and Ben’s, this wedding came complete with its own montage of memorable relationship moments, a surefire way to reduce me to a weeping mess.
Let’s share some love today—what are your favorite TV weddings of all time?
Other than the Castle/Beckett wedding and the Leslie/Ben wedding, both of which were absolutely perfect for the couples and the fans, my other favorite TV wedding was that of Booth/Brennan.
It was an extremely long time coming but just like Castle/Beckett and Leslie/Ben, their wedding vows made every moment of waiting worth it. Brennan’s letter to Booth from several seasons earlier showed just how far she had come as a character. Her feelings for him made no sense but she went for them anyway. He’s let her see that sometimes things don’t have to be logical, they can just be felt. They are a continued source of joy during each episode and I love every look we get into their lives together and there was no better way for it to start. It wasn’t the way they planned but it was the way it needed to happen. Right down to the squintern’s borrowed museum outfits, everything just worked.
I’m always so happy when longtime shippers finally get a wedding, so I remember being ecstatic for all of you when Booth and Brennan finally got married. 🙂
Katie, my busy life doesn’t leave me nearly enough time to comment on your posts anymore (although I read every one of them, and sometimes want to write an essay in response!) but I had to comment on this because I watched all of these weddings and adored them as well. TV these days seems to run on angst and strife: put people together into toxic relationships only to pull them back apart under silly, contrived circumstances, on-again off-again, lather, rinse and repeat. And I am SO tired of it.
I made a post on tumblr recently in which I talked about how much I love the stability of Castle and Beckett’s relationship (and considering the crazy number of reblogs I got, apparently I’m not the only one). While some people hear that word and automatically think “booooring!” I think “Oh my gosh, YES! A stable, loving, adult relationship, one that isn’t constantly teasing us with ridiculous relationship shenanigans and break-ups, one where the people work through some semi-realistic issues and come out stronger on the other side, and love each other deeply all the while.” To me, there is NOTHING boring about that, because that’s what love ACTUALLY looks like in real life (and if your relationships look like something out of “Scandal,” do yourself a favorite and run for the hills). I will never be one to claim that their relationship has been handled perfectly at every turn, but I am SO appreciative that TPTB dove in anyway, and allowed them to muddle through their issues and not wait for the stars to align. Some of their struggles felt so real to me, and as someone who’s been married/divorced/is still figuring out relationships, I always want to see more of that. There are so few relationships like this on TV right now, and I, for one, find it refreshing to see a couple portrayed that way.
I will forever be upset with how “Chuck” ended (I still think Chuck, Sarah, and the viewers deserved better), but I loved their romance and wedding just the same. Same for Ben and Leslie, and the sweetness that surrounds everything they do as a couple. I will always be sad that we didn’t get to see Sydney and Vaughn’s nuptials, but regardless, I’m happy to know that they got their happy ending. And while I wasn’t nearly as invested in Booth and Bones anymore by the time they FINALLY got married, their wedding certainly did them justice (sorry about the sarcasm there, but I’m a viewer whose heart that they lost when they dragged that tension out two seasons too long, only to force them together unnaturally in the face of Emily Deschanel’s real-life pregnancy… another reason why I’m eternally grateful that Castle and Beckett got together when they did).
I’ve been lucky enough to witness numerous TV weddings over the years myself, some more gratifying than others, and the three you chose here were infinitely worthy of being featured in this post. Long live love!
Long live love, indeed, Megan!
I’m so happy you had time to comment on this post because I agree with EVERYTHING you said about loving stable adult relationships on TV. God help anyone who thinks that relationships like the ones on Scandal or any shows like that are anywhere near healthy. I’ll take relationships that many want to write off as “boring” any day, because happiness, support, and respect are infinitely more appealing to me than any kind of intense dramatics.
Oh TV weddings! Like I mentioned before, despite the ridiculous amount of TV I have watched over my lifetime, I haven’t been through many of them.
My ultimate ship growing up was of course Mulder and Scully, and even though we got 9 seasons and a baby, there was no wedding. We didnt even get a love scene (This is why I turned to fan fiction). There was pretty much nothing but the chemistry and charisma of the two leads to keep us shippers going until around season 7 when their gazes got intense and Scully started straightening Mulder’s tie and we all just assumed they were sleeping together off screen. Although Mulder and Scully were never the wedding type, they are City Hall type people, so it never really bother me we never got a wedding.
The only weddings I have been super excited about are my Lois and Clark weddings. And I have got them three different ways, two on TV, and one in comic form. Lois and Clark: TNAOS had some false starts (hence why they had to name the episode “I Swear to God This Time Were Not Kidding’) but I remember enjoying it. I was 13 when it aired and I remember watching it up in my parents bedroom because they were watching something else on the big TV. Although I have to admit 13 year old me was more intrigued by the honeymoon ep, oh raging jr high hormones. I also have to say I absolutely love the comic version of their wedding. That whole graphic novel is great. Not to mention there is this ridiculous part where Lois finds the perfect condo, only for there to be a two year wait list on it. Batman later gifts it to the couple because it turns out Bruce Wayne owns the building (ha ha). I just love how absurdly domestic it all is. Then there is ‘Smallville’, which is my favorite of the 3. They actually saved it for the Season 10 (series) finale, and the wedding is actually crashed by a villain so they dont actually get married (of course), but we get to hear their vows and see them in their formalwear and really thats all that matters. I absolutely adored Lois and Clark in Smallville, and their whole journey on that show was pretty much perfect, even with the failed wedding.
And I will end this with my favorite TV vows. I always loved Clark’s vows to Lois, mainly because Lois Lane is one of my favorite characters of all time, and these are words that I actually find worthy of her. “I, Clark Kent, take you, Lois Lane, to be my companion, forever. With you by my side I will never be alone. Though the world sees a strong and independent woman, I’ve never known someone with such gentle grace and more pure heart. When I’ve been lost you’ve always been there to bring me back, so on this day, at this moment, I pledge the rest of my life to you. You’ve always believed in me, and I believe in you. When you believe in someone it’s not for a minute, or just for now, it’s forever.”
I just need to say that I am over here all teary-eyed over vows for a couple I like but don’t have an intense attachment to. That’s when you know those are some well-written vows. 😉
So in the hullabaloo of life I am only just getting to this lovely throwback to an episode of TV I may have watched parts of every day this week. I adored Castle and Beckett’s wedding as proved by my manifesto from Monday. But as others said, I adored it because it was true and reflective of those characters. It absolutely honored my investment as a viewer and exceeded my expectations in execution (blue screen be damned!)
As someone who was a part of the 30 million people who watched the standard bearer for TV weddings – the wedding of Luke and Laura on General Hospital I can say few have gotten to me like this past Monday. However, there are two that have.
Burt and Carole on Glee — This wedding really is indicative of the very best that Glee had to offer as a TV show. From the joy of the actual ceremony and the brilliant rendition of Marry You by the group. I loved watching Burt and Carole boogie down the aisle. And I loved even more that the wedding was as much about the formation of a family as it was about the celebration of this couple’s love. The singular best relationship on Glee was Burt and Kurt’s. To see him gain a mother who respected and loved him, and the relationship he shares with his father was beautiful. To watch the evolution of Burt’s role in Finn’s character was equally wonderful. And to watch Finn and Kurt become brothers was one of the best payoffs of the show. I get teared up just thinking about it.
I am going to co-sign on Chuck. Oddly enough I finally got to their wedding during my flight to Disney World. I love what you said about all of it from the practice vows to the reactions by the actors. I loved the innovative split of the way they did it. To have her vows as a private memory into his declaration in the church. And like you, I am a sucker for a voice over montage. But what absolutely, holistically punch me right in the gut was during the actual ceremony. When Chuck closes his vows with “You can count on me.” I fell apart. It was not only so beautiful and inherent to his character and the relationship they have built. But it said everything about his honor and protection of the very deepest fear she possessed from her con-man father to the lack of trust built into what she does. She’s right, it was perfect.
First of all, I’m so happy you finally got to the Chuck wedding because it’s honestly not just my favorite episode of that show but probably one of my favorite TV episodes I’ve seen in the last few years. Chuck’s “You can count on me” reduces me to a mess of tears every time I watch it because that’s it—that’s all you need to know why he’s perfect for her.
And I would like to simply co-sign onto your perfect take on Burt and Carole’s wedding. Every time that cover of “Marry You” comes up on my iPod, I can’t contain my smile.