Actors Respond to Tarlos' Surprise Moment on '9-1-1: Lone Star'

Sunday May 22, 2022
Originally published on May 17, 2022

Rafael Silva and Ronen Rubinstein in the '9-1-1: Lone Star'
Rafael Silva and Ronen Rubinstein in the '9-1-1: Lone Star'  (Source:Fox)

Spoilers ahead for "9-1-1: Lone Star"

The Tarlos moment fans have been waiting for dropped on the latest episode of "9-1-1: Lone Star." And for actor Rafael Silva, it couldn't have come at a better moment.

"It's incredibly important to have this type of storyline be on national television right now — especially with the endless amounts of anti LGBTQIA+ bills trying to be passed in multiple states in the United States. To have this sort of representation right at the forefront is extremely imperative," actor Rafael Silva told Entertainment Weekly.


Firefighter T.K. (Ronen Rubinstein) proposed to gay police officer Carlos (played by Silva) on an episode that aired Monday night.

The couple "have become so popular that they've been given the affectionate moniker 'Tarlos' on social media," EDGE reported a year ago after the couple had a sexy onscreen hookup.

"Not only does the show feature one of the first Black trans men in a regular role on network television, but its sensitivity to LGBT+ issues even emboldened one of the cast to come out as bisexual," Pink News said.

"It sort of feels like a full circle for T.K. — quite a beautiful sort of arc," Rubinstein told EW. "I'm relieved that [show runner Tim Minear] decided that it was going to be T.K. that proposes to Carlos. I feel like it was a way for T.K. to close that chapter on his previous failed engagement and the trauma that came from that, with trying to commit suicide and overdosing."

"I loved that the engagement was outside of the box and wonderfully bizarre in many ways."

It was something that Silva expected, but not in this manner. "I think also we've seen the history of this relationship: T.K. can be a bit impulsive, a little bit messy, a little bit all over the place. And Carlos is the one who tries to keep everything together. Each are beautiful in their own way."

Ronen Rubinstein
Ronen Rubinstein  (Source: Fox)

Rubinstein also loved that it was outside the box. "I'd always kind of envisioned it'd be a classic proposal: Maybe I'd cook dinner for Carlos and I'd get down on one knee. But I love that Tim always goes against what people might expect. I think that's what makes him such a special writer."

And, Rubinstein recalled, the shooting was intense. "Rafael and I, we both cried during rehearsals. Our director was like, '[Alrigh]t, let's cut rehearsal short. Save all the emotion for the real thing.' The rehearsal was really intense, and that's a testament to the beauty of the writing. Sometimes we get blessed with certain scenes where I don't have to do any emotional prep or anything. The words do all the work and all the emotions start bubbling up just from speaking the words on the page. That's such a blessing for an actor."

He continued: "The crew was really on the edge of their seats, and it was a really beautiful moment on set that day. I think everybody knew the weight behind what's going on — just outside of the show, what it means to show a mixed-race, gay, first-responder couple getting engaged and eventually getting married. It's a big deal for network television, especially with the climate that we're in right now in the country...I'm just so excited to see yet another extraordinary step in the Tarlos saga."

Check out these pics from their respective Instagram accounts: