The return of Will & Grace on Thursday after 11 years off the air could have been another one of those lame lack-of-new-ideas and blatant-cash-grab revivals that sadly have been in vogue the past few years. Fortunately, that is far from the case for the now ninth season of the sitcom that reunites stars Debra Messing, Eric McCormack, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally. Already pumped up to 16 episodes this year and renewed for another new season, Will & Grace 2.0 might not be a cultural game changer the way its 1998-2006 run was, but as I say in my video review above, David Kohan and Max Mutchnick’s NBC series is almost as on point as before.
Once this James Burrows-directed revival gets some Donald Trump outrage out of the way, the new Will & Grace comfortably slips back into the relentless and tapered wordplay that characterized the best of the show in the past. Of course, being that it is 2017 there are Melania Trump night terrors, Shonda Rhimes wisecracks, smartphones and dating apps in the mix. There also a swiping dismissal right off the top of what was thought to be the series finale at the end of Season 8 in 2006. Add to that Hayes being in top form as the still-acting, fame-seeking Jack, and you have the whole sparkling enchilada.
In many ways, despite some timely tweaks, not a lot has changed — there is still that self-described weird closeness between McCormack’s still-lawyering Will and Messing’s still-decorating Grace. And in an age when Big 4 sitcoms often seem intent on self-propelled extinction, there is also a charm to the returning Will & Grace that shows the new kids and the hangers-on how to do it right.
So, click on my review above and see more of my POV. Will you be watching Thursday?