Lionel Boyce on Chemistry Between Marcus and Sydney on ‘The Bear’: ‘Are We Friends? Are We Not Friends?’

Fans of “The Bear” tend to “ship” a little too hard. First it was viewers hoping co-workers Carmy (Jeremy Allen White) and Sydney (Ayo Edebiri) would pair up, then the show hinted at a possible attraction between Sydney and pastry chef Marcus (Lionel Boyce) that stirred online chatter. Even Richie (Ebon Moss-Bachrach) is getting some attention with audiences hoping to see him pair up with Sarah Ramos’ character Jessica, whom he met while working at the fictional fine-dining restaurant Ever in Season 2 and reunites with again in Season 3.

In a recent interview with GQ, Lionel Boyce shared his thoughts on why people seem to want to see these characters paired up romantically and how he sees his character’s relationships developing.

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“I think they’re friends,” Boyce said outright in relation to the dynamic between Marcus and Sydney. “They started as friends and then it’s like things get in close proximity. I think that’s something that happens with people and that’s just a human thing where you’re like, I have chemistry with this person. Are we friends? Are we not friends? It’s a weird thing, but they found a way to navigate through it.”

From the meal Sydney cooks for Marcus in her apartment in Season 1 to helping him grieve over the loss of his mother in Season 3, new layers continue to be added to their friendship, forging deeper bonds. All this despite Sydney’s romantic rejection of Marcus at the end of Season 2.

“[With] the death of his mother, his mind shifted over [there]. It’s less about trying to deal with [the rejection], he needs support from a friend and she’s a friend who has dealt with the loss of a parent as well,” Boyce said to GQ. “So she has a personal experience and a way to connect with him through that way. And I think this season is cool because they acknowledge it and wrap it up. Marcus makes it a point to apologize.”

Sydney isn’t the only one Marcus is connecting further with this season either. At one point, when speaking with Carmy, he shares that he was happy he was working in the restaurant when he found out about his mother dying and that it’s where she would’ve wanted him to be.

“To me, I interpret that as he has a found family that he feels love and camaraderie with, so he feels like he’s not alone. I have genuine people I connect [with] and feel like family,” he said. “He’s probably assumed that in [his mother’s] mind when she goes, he’ll just be alone, so this is the best-case scenario. I think it’s a little bit of both to be [honest]. He rationalized it because he has nothing to lean on, but also there is some part to it where Carmy, Syd, Tina, Richie, Ebra, and everybody in that kitchen is now his found family.”

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