A sitcom is nothing without that solid foundation of lead characters, the people you want to invite into your home every week, and Will & Grace hit the jackpot. Just look at those four leads. To find a cast that works so well no matter how you combine the characters for a storyline, a cast that can hold an entire episode up on their own and make it a highlight of the series, a cast who can take their own solo storyline and run with it is amazing. It was as if each of our leads found their groove—not only with their own individual characters, but also with each other—right away and never looked back, and I am so thankful. It truly felt like they forged a family, and such a close-knit one at that.
But damn, did the guest stars come to play. And the ones who came to play more than once? Even better.
With the revival comes the inevitable conversation: who else do we get to see? And while it’s fun to predict who will be added next to the growing list of guest stars, what I really want to know is who we’ll get to see again. This show has a roster of recurring characters that is just as dynamic and wonderful as its main cast, and at least some of them have to make their way back to the show. Here’s my list of familiar faces that should make a triumphant return at some point during the revival’s run. The likelihood that they’ll actually show up ranges from a complete and utter pipe dream to OH MY GOD, THEY’RE COMING BACK FOR REAL, but my feelings for these characters remain at 100. And, if nothing else, this is a celebration of the ones who made the Will & Grace universe shine a little brighter.
But seriously, bring these people back, okay?
LORRAINE IS BACK, BITCHES. I am over the moon thrilled that Minnie Driver was able to take time from her Speechless schedule (how great is that show?!) to join in all the fun for an episode. And I’m itching to know exactly what it is that brings Lorraine back into Karen’s life. We all know the reason she was brought into the fold was the affair she had with Stan while he was in prison. And between that, fretting about Stan’s will, and Jack splitting his time between the two, of course words were going to be exchanged. The last time we saw Lorraine, though, she and Karen were on the way to actually becoming friends. Of course, that was before Karen divorced her dad about thirty minutes after she married him, so who knows where their relationship is at right now. For all we know, that’s water under the bridge; I mean, that WAS thirteen years ago.
Come on, though…it’s way more fun when they’re rivals.
They could bring Lorraine back under literally any circumstance, and I would be wholeheartedly here for it. She always goes toe to toe with Karen in the most spectacular way (well…maybe except for that time she pushed Karen off a yacht…), and Jack’s conflicted feelings about her could churn out a great plot for the revival. I love Karen with all my heart, but Lorraine Finster is a straight up blessing and we are not worthy. I cannot wait to see her again.
P.S: We never saw her after it was revealed that Stan faked his death, and he was supposed to have died on top of her, so…was she in on it? Is that the storyline in the revival? Do I win a prize?
Speaking of Karen’s rivals, I’m hoping that we’ll actually get this one. I mean, Leslie Jordan kind of let the cat out of the bag about the revival in the first place, and how would he know that unless he was being considered for it? And since the series finale is being scrapped to make way for these new episodes, Beverley Leslie could absolutely make a triumphant return (even if they had kept the finale in play, who says he didn’t gently float down to the ground after being swept away by that breeze?). Beverley is that perfect mix of adversary and friend for Karen, and it has always led to amazing interactions, from trying to outbid each other in silent auctions, to becoming tennis partners against Grace and Leo. Surely, there’s enough space in the revival for Beverly to waltz in, wage verbal war with Karen, and waltz back out again.
But only if his “business associate” Benji comes along for the ride. The finale didn’t happen, so they technically never split up, IT CAN WORK.
I love Larry so goddamn much. He’s the best combination of oversharing and awkward. Joe and Larry play off of each other so well when they’re shown together; Joe’s the more level-headed one of the relationship, and Larry’s…well, Larry. He’s the one you ask to go on a date with your father’s mistress because he borrowed your coffee urn and he owes you. He’s the only other person who believes there is such a thing as an old-fashioned piano party (his mom used to throw them?). He laughs at inappropriate times, and Grace’s poker playing makes him violent. He’s delightful.
Larry’s one of Will and Grace’s oldest friends, so I’m hoping that the chance of him popping into apartment 9C is a little bit more than a possibility. It doesn’t even need to be THAT big of a guest spot; just have him walk in, laugh because he’s uncomfortable, and leave. That would make me a happy camper.
You guys, I need this one. I need it. I just need to know that after all these years, Will and Grace still have a neighbor that steals their newspaper every day and is enthusiastic about the roller ballet in Xanadu. I need to know that there’s still someone in that building who will be completely on board with the aforementioned old-fashioned piano party even though he basically knows no one there. And if there’s someone else living in 9B by the time we return to Riverside Drive, I do not need to meet that person, thank you very much. I will be just fine acting like Mr. Zamir will always be there.
If I’m being honest, this is mainly because I just want to see Lily Tomlin do things as often as I possibly can. And yeah, okay, she’s got the brilliant Grace and Frankie keeping her occupied, but who says she’s can’t swing by the Will & Grace set to deadpan a few lines here and there? After all, Margot was Will’s last boss before the series ended; assuming he’s still with the law firm, and assuming she didn’t retire, this is totally within the realm of possibility. It is a downright CRIME that she was only in two episodes of the entire series, and that we saw so little of the woman who wanted her office to look like a tasteful bloodbath and tried to set Grace up on a date with her own husband. So I beg the powers that be: Please rectify this. Please give us a good Margot storyline.
But most importantly, please just give me all of the Lily Tomlin you have.
Elliot’s back, you guys! Once the initial shock over the fact that Jack basically has a thirty-year-old son wears off (years and years of reruns has made him perpetually fourteen in my mind), it’ll be fun to see where he has ended up. I was always on board with Elliot’s part in this show. When he was introduced as Jack’s son, Jack had just learned that the biological father he had been trying to track down for over a year passed away, and although he was reluctant to get to know Elliot at first, I’m sure having that connection helped him get through it. And I loved watching Jack deal with all of these parenting moments the Jack McFarland way. When Elliot blows the winning shot in his basketball game, Jack makes him feel better by sharing the time he puked on stage. When Elliot doesn’t have a date for the dance, Jack takes care of it…even if it means convincing Grace to pinch hit. Jack’s relationship with his son was always so entertaining to watch, and I would love to see what an older, wiser Elliot looks like. Maybe he even has a kid of his own (oh god…Jack as a grandfather, what would that even be?).
Plus, Michael Angarano was declared a series regular by season four, although after that season we didn’t see too much of him. But he technically was a series regular, that basically meant he was obligated to come back, right?
Joanne the Acting Student
All I’m saying is that according to Sean Hayes, Jack will be teaching his own—probably definitely very misguided—acting technique called “Jackting” (if one of the principles isn’t “Acting is attracting,” I may have to riot) and I think it would be kind of hilarious to see Joanne still taking notes from the front row. And to be fair, Jack did help her land a toothpaste commercial…even if he did cost her a smoking PSA because she seemed too jazzed about her dead dad. So who’s to say she wouldn’t return to his class, hoping to nail that Powerball audition? Crazier things have happened on this show…people have come back from the dead on this show.
And I’m just assuming Russell will be there, too, if only to take his shirt off.
I was going to start this part off about how this might be a shout into the darkness, considering what Eric McCormack revealed about Will and Vince’s fate since the show ended the first time. But then Debra Messing posted a photo of herself with Bobby Cannavale on the set, and then the show account posted a photo of him with Eric McCormack (and my heart exploded), so I guess I’m really bad at predicting things. I’m genuinely sad that Will and Vince will be divorced by the time we check back in with the gang; their dynamic was so wonderful and you could genuinely feel the love between them. And I think the thing that got me so on board with Vince was that on the surface, he didn’t seem like the kind of guy Will would end up with, but once we got to know him better, it made so much sense (kind of like how I felt about Grace and Nathan. Apparently I have a type when it comes to relationships to root for). So while I want to live in my “Will and Vince forever” bubble, I also kind of want to know what the hell broke them up so we know what it is and make sure it never happens to anyone good and pure ever again.
And who knows? Maybe there’s hope for them to get back together. Third time’s a charm.
I mean, I already mentioned him, I might as well…
Okay, this one IS a shout into the darkness, and I know it will never happen, but you will also never be able to rid me of the opinion that Grace’s relationship with Nathan was the best one. I love his story arc so much. I love that he was the direct opposite of the person Grace normally went for, and I love that this was the relationship that seemed to bring her out of her comfort zone in the best way. I love that when Grace told him she loved him on his birthday, he said it was the best present he could ever get, and I love that he wanted to be a part of the things that already made up her life. I love that he seemed to be welcomed into the fold, and I love that even with a rocky start, Will grew to like him, and was legitimately on board with it when marriage became a possibility.
And then it all came crashing down. Even though it resulted in my favorite episode of all time (“Bed, Bath, and Beyond” is the essence of Will & Grace boiled down to thirty minutes, and you know it), I hate that they broke up. And I hate that if the reason for it was the fact that marriage would change Will and Grace’s dynamic (which, as we found out soon enough, it did), they split only for Grace to get married in the next season to someone who really did not deserve her. And I hate that he went away with another woman three days after he and Grace broke it off, because it just seemed so out of character for him, and I never pegged him for that kind of guy. Nevertheless, while I know I want the impossible, I’m genuinely curious to know what happened to him after that proposal. I mean, if Will and Grace’s children can magically disappear for the revival, Nathan can magically reappear. Right?!
Don’t judge me. The heart wants what it wants.
…And none for Leo Markus, bye.
Look, I know that he’s in at least one episode of the revival, but I just can’t with that guy. The thing is, I don’t remember feeling this strongly about it the first time around, at least before the Cambodia incident. CLEARLY the fact that he not only cheated on Grace while he was away with Doctors Without Borders, but also tried to get her best friend to tell her instead of doing it himself was the point of no return. But rewatching the series so many times over the years, you’re bound to pick up on things you didn’t pay attention to the first time. And I picked up on the fact that Leo is kind of a dick. Like remember the time he tricked Grace into meeting his parents when she wasn’t ready? Or the time he married her and thought the fact they knew nothing about each other (GRACE DIDN’T EVEN KNOW HIS REAL NAME WAS MARVIN) was a joke while she was clearly freaking about it? Or how he never seemed to bother with trying to understand her dynamic with Will (I could rattle off a list of instances, but this post has to end sometime, so let’s just start with the entirety of “Last Ex to Brooklyn” and get back to me later)? And THEN he cheated, because why not drop a massive cherry onto this upsetting sundae. I’m sure Harry Connick, Jr. is a fine human being, but we as a society really need to stop trying to make Leo happen.
So we’ve got that one episode we know about, but after that, can we just…not?
Who do you want to see come back for the revival? Did I leave your favorite off the list? Let’s chat in the comments!