Tuesday, April 14, 2020

What I’m Watching: Will and Grace

Will and Grace: Season 11, Episode 16 “We Love Lucy” (B+)

Overall, this tribute episode was funny, even if some of its execution and the framing device were relatively clunky. I watched this half-hour with my wife and her parents, who are diehard fans of “I Love Lucy” and were thrilled to see this humorous callback to some of the most entertaining moments from that series. My wife was sure that Debra Messing was just dubbing Lucille Ball’s in the vitameatavegamin scene, while my mother-in-law insisted that the other actors were taken from the original 1952 episode. Neither of those things were true, and that first effort was a solid shot-for-shot imitation, while having Karen and Jack be Lucy in the successive scenes were clearly played for more absurd comedy. I think Messing was the inarguable MVP of the episode, impressing first as Lucy, then as Fred, and finally as Sean Hayes’ scene partner in the chocolate conveyor belt sketch. Eric McCormack was also great as Ricky, though he basically just put on an accent and played the scene the same way three times in a row opposite different Lucys. Will’s summary of what parts of Lucy’s personality and her dynamic with Ricky that each of them fulfilled was sweet if expected, and this comedy tribute was a decent diversion right before the show signs off for good this time with just two episodes to go, plus a retrospective clip show special that will air right after the series finale on April 23rd. It’s been an enjoyable return, and let’s hope for a proper and sentimental sendoff.

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