'Abbott Elementary': Lisa Ann Walter Shares Sheryl Lee Ralph's Initial Reaction to Season 3 Finale (Exclusive)

Lisa Ann Walter attends Era Coalition Forward Women's Equality Trailblazer Awards and premiere of "Still Working 9 to 5" at Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts Center on May 29, 2024
Getty Images

Lisa Ann Walter says Sheryl Lee Ralph had a hilarious reaction to how 'Abbott Elementary' season 3 ended.

Lisa Ann Walter says her Abbott Elementary co-star and on-screen best friend, Sheryl Lee Ralph, had the best reaction to the season 3 finale, which included a moment that was three years in the making. 

On Wednesday, the 60-year-old actress spoke with ET's Denny Directo from the carpet of the Still Working 9 to 5 screening and fundraiser -- hosted by the ERA Coalition and honoring Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda and Dolly Parton -- and talked about the wild response Ralph, 67, had to Gregory Eddie (Tyler James Williams) and Janine Teagues (Quinta Brunson) kissing passionately. 

In the exciting scene at the end of the season -- which fans already know will not be the last for the Abbott Elementary crew as the show received an early season 4 renewal -- Gregory returns to Janine's house after her party has ended and fixes the flickering light on her porch. Quickly driven by his feelings for his co-worker, he rushes in and kisses her, something that made fans (and Ralph) go crazy. 

"First of all, when we did the table read -- I have to do my impression of Sheryl Lee Ralph, who does not read the script before we get to table [reads]," Walter, who plays Melissa Schemmenti, told ET. "So here we all are and then he [Gregory] comes in [tells Janine], 'I fixed your light.'" 

Clearly overcome with excitement, Walter says Ralph -- who portrays Janine's mentor, Barbara Howard -- burst out in a chorus of approving sounds, including "ooh" and "aww."

"I'm like, 'Sheryl, you're not at home,'" Walter said of the cast members laughing at Ralph's emphatic acceptance of the ending. "This is in front of everybody." 

Of course, she wasn't the only one who was excited for the long-awaited follow-up to Gregory and Janine's season 2 kiss. On social media sites like X (formerly Twitter) and Instagram, viewers wasted no time sharing their reactions to the smooch and turning the moment into sweet edits on TikTok. 

"Janine and Gregory just gave us one of the hottest makeouts in TV history!!!! 🔥🔥🔥#AbbottElementary," one fan wrote in a post on X. 

Back in 2023, Ralph predicted her own reaction to the kiss when she and Walter sat down for "Spilling the E-Tea" and discussed everything from their characters' friendship on the show to their individual prolific histories in Hollywood. 

The duo dished that just like the fans, they too were impatiently waiting out the "will they, won't they" slow burn between Gregory and Janine. 

"When they kiss finally, I want it to last forever!" the Sister Act 2 actress said at the time.

Tyler James Williams and Quinta Brunson in 'Abbott Elementary' - ABC via Getty Images

One person who isn't on board with the union? That would be Williams, who plays one-half of the Gregory-Janine relationship on the show. During an April appearance on The Jennifer Hudson Show, the 31-year-old Golden Globe winner shared that he doesn't "necessarily want to see them together."

"It's partially an actor's choice but also, I read a lot of scripts all the time, I watch a lot of TV, a lot of films, [and] I don't think that we see displays of platonic love between two people often," Williams explained. "I think it's really easy to go right to 'they have feelings for each other therefore they should be together,' right? [But] I like this dynamic of them exploring withholding that and just actively loving each other where they are. That, I like to see."

He continued, "I think seeing a healthy friendship that is deeply caring about one another in a work atmosphere needs to be shown more than the relationship." 

Our deepest condolences to Williams as it looks like he's in the minority on this one.

Alyssa Milano, Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin and Lisa Ann Walter attend Era Coalition Forward Women's Equality Trailblazer Awards and screening of "Still Working 9 to 5" at Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts Center on May 29, 2024 in Los Angeles, California - Getty Images

As for her reaction to getting to stand side-by-side with Tomlin and Fonda -- both in attendance for the screening -- Walter told ET that the invite alone was enough to make her giddy at the thought of honoring the actresses.

"It's sort of surreal, just having grown up being with these women being idols of mine," she said. "Not just for their amazing acting talent."