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The re-engineered dramedy might work as a “very special episode,” but it will likely offer little allure to viewers now that they’ve seen where the show is headed.
In a media culture hurtling by at an increasingly frantic pace, a percentage of the audience can be counted upon to seek out any such novelty.
Veteran actor James Garner and David Spade also joined the show.
Soon, Cate’s “bitterly divorced” parents, played by Garner and Suzanne Pleshette, arrive to provide moral support.
Katey Sagal, Kaley Cuoco, Amy Davidson, Martin Spanjers, James Garner, David Spade, John Ritter, Billy Aaron Brown, Larry Miller, Adam Arkin, Robert Guillaume, Rachel Bilson, Michael Mc Millian, Shawn Pyfrom, Erik von Detten, Leighton Meester, Patrick Warburton, Nicole Richie, Paul Wesley, Josh Henderson, Charlie Babcock, Ed O'Neill, Kevin P.
In the immediate aftermath of John Ritter’s death, it was hard to take issue with ABC’s decisions, since execs were thrust into an untenable situation.
The consistent refrain from the network and cast has been “This happens to families,” which is of course true.
It does not happen often, however, to light-hearted sitcom families, and incorporating the Ritter character’s passing is uncomfortable terrain.
As they bicker about artificial sweeteners and attending church, it’s amazing how much you found yourself missing the laughtrack, conspicuously absent from the episode.