Ryan Shay
Character Name: Ryan Shay


Sheila Shay (adopted mother)

Fred Shay (adopted father)
Lisa Shay (adopted sister)
Malik LeFrique (brother-in-law)
Tessa Altman (in love with)

Gender: Male

Portrayed By:

Parker Young

First Appearance:


Ryan Shay is a recurring character on the show Suburgatory. His first appearance was "Pilot", and has continued to play in most episodes throughout. It was revealed in the last episode of the first season, 'The Motherload', that he was adopted by the Shays. He finds this out in 'Krampus' and he is portrayed by Parker Young.


Ryan is an athlete at Chatswin High, and we know he has probably lived in Chatswin his whole life with the Shays, but was adopted from a young age. Ryan plays football and he is also on the Chatswin high school's wrestling team.

He grew up unaware that he was adopted, living with his sister Lisa Shay, and adopted parents Sheila and Fred. But, after a photographer revealed the fact to him thinking he knew, Ryan ran away from the Shays. He came up with the name Eugene Goldfarb as a alias to his unknown identity. Tessa asked him to go home, but he ran off. 

Later on it is revealed that Ryan comes to his senses, and comes back to the Shays and starts a relationship with Tessa. 


Ryan is a very clueless, dim-witted and gullible teenage boy with a happy-go-lucky personality. When Ryan and Tessa are making out under the bleachers, Tessa pulls him back between smooches to ask him a series of intellect-related questions. For example, she asks him if he has ever seen a foreign movie, and he asks her if Avatar counts because "it takes place on a foreign planet." To make herself feel better about the situation, Tessa gives him partial credit because James Cameron is Canadian. Also, Tessa uses the word cliché, Ryan thinks "Cliché" is a new pop artist. On the other hand, Ryan appears to have unsuspected depths as shown in the episode where he is able to understand and appreciate the subtle art house films that go over Tessa's head.

Even though Ryan does sound stupid, he is very compassionate towards his family and friends. In "Thanksgiving", he agrees with Lisa that they shouldn't have to wear costumes for thanksgiving and in "The Body" he asks his mother to make tuna and shells for Lisa, because his parents make him "victory dinners" for constantly winning at sports.  

He is known by neighbors, including Dallas Royce, as having rock-hard abs. He named his abs "The Gun Show".

Relationship with TessaEdit

Please refer to: Ryan-Tessa Relationship

Ryan kissed Tessa on a dare in season one, and they started a brief relationship. When Tessa starts dating Scott Strauss Ryan gets jealous in "Sex and the Suburbs". He proclaims that he wants her back, but she walks away to get food from the brunch buffet. 

In "Down Time" Ryan decides to take Tessa on a date after seeing her depressed and eating butter, at Lisa and Malik's new realtionship. He takes her to a fondue place, but Tessa sees Lisa and Malik at the restaurant which causes Tessa not want to eat there. After some presistence from Ryan she goes into the restuarant. Tessa tells Lisa that her and Ryan are having a good time. At the end of the episode, Ryan asks Tessa if he can touch her boob, and she tells him that he has 3 seconds. 

In season 2, "Ryan's Song" he tells Lisa that he wants Tessa. Proving that he has never gotten over Tessa. When Tessa calls Lisa on the phone, over to the Werner's house, where she was babysitting Opus, Lisa sends Ryan instead. Ryan calmed baby Opus down, and that caused Tessa to see Ryan in a different light. At the end of the episode Tessa and Ryan share a small kiss. 

In "Junior Secretary's Day" Ryan tells Tessa that he's attracted to her. He also takes care of her, after she got her wisdom teeth pulled out. In "Chinese Chicken" Ryan and Tessa announce to the school that the two of them are officially dating. 


  • Lisa discovered that Ryan was adopted when she found out that he has O+ Blood Type. Their mother is B-, their father is AB+, so it would be impossible for Ryan to be O.


Season 1Edit

Season 2Edit

Season 3Edit

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