On Thursday, Will & Grace was all about character development, pointing out new aspects of the renewed sitcom’s diverse regulars.
For starters, Jack (Sean Hayes) was forced to take a temp job teaching children who aren’t yet working actors in a some do, some teach scenario. Right after losing a “real” job, he must mentor kids aiming to do what he wants to do: Be a thespian.
Jack’s hard on them, sending the ones he doesn’t like to the bleachers. But, at the end of the lesson, a shy kid came out with an outstanding and unaccompanied ballad as Jack looked on in awe, a vulnerable moment that’s precious.
Karen (Megan Mullally) followed Jack to try to get him to play hooky. No dice so she also took a seat in the bleachers. There, she met a pre-teen who tried to get advice from the older woman because there aren’t any female figures at home.
At first, Karen was so brusk that the girl clammed up. In a last attempt to get her to talk, the loud mouth told her, “That’s it. Period.”
Of course, the young woman reacted and in another scene we see Karen and the 12-year-old discussing female stuff in a mother/daughter way, proving, as her new friend points out, “[Karen is] not really mean.”
Neither is Grace (Debra Messing), although she was mighty put off when her ex-husband showed up after an emergency breast biopsy instead of Will (Eric McCormack), who she expected. Turns out Leo (Harry Connick Jr.) is still her emergency contact.
He took her home, sitting in silence during the drive. Once there, she spilled all pent-up angst about possibly having cancer to her best friend who in turn spilled his angst about seeing too much sad stuff at a Lady Diana exhibition.
Afterward, a cancer-free Grace seeks out Leo for closure. Together, they realized the reason their marriage didn’t work was not due to her close relationship with Will. Rather, it was because Leo cheated on her and Grace wasn’t able to fully forgive him.
Despite the serious subject matter explored in this Will & Grace episode, many well placed laughs popped up, proving–once again–that a laugh track isn’t needed.
Will & Grace airs on NBC at 9 p.m., ET.