Series creators Max Mutchnick and David Kohan talk about why this finale feels different and more authentic, and discuss the possibility of yet another revival.
After more than 50 episodes in their revival run and 246 episodes overall, "Will & Grace" finally bid farewell to its fans ... again!
This time around, though, the series went with a far less ambitious and a quieter finale. The series known for its crazy guest stars managed to only squeeze in two, and one was key to the narrative.
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Mostly it was about the foursome that made the series such an instant and groundbreaking classic when it premiered way back in 1998 and gently shifting them into the next chapter of their lives, rather than dramatically trying to alter the formula that had made them work in the first place.
You could argue it was more of a non-finale, which has become more common in recent years. We don't always need dramatic flash-forwards or huge life-altering changes -- as "Modern Family" opted to give us with their recent series finale.
Plus, "Will & Grace" already did that with their first finale back in 2006. Controversial at the time, it was an extravagant hour-long affair that revealed Will and Grace had actually become estranged for two decades before reconciling as their respective kids went into college and eventually fell in love and got married.
Many found it a betrayal of the core relationship of the series, and so it was quickly retconned out for the revival. Still, some are complaining that this new finale didn't offer definitive closer and answers for the characters. We would argue otherwise, though, as we feel it left them exactly where they needed to be.
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Jack - Happily married still to Estefan, Jack has realized his much smaller and more attainable dream of actually taking a bow on a Broadway stage. It was an incredibly ugly, awkward and beautifully sloppy bow, but it's a testament to Jack's growth that it is enough to make him feel satisfied. No longer does he need to be the star, though he'll never stop dreaming.
Karen - If there was one constant throughout the entire run of "WIll & Grace" these past two decades, it has been Karen Walker. She might go through ups and downs in life, but she doesn't really change, and that's kind of the key to what makes her character work. So what could be more appropriate than having her and Stan reconcile in dramatic fashion (with him, of course, off-camera and unheard). In the end, Karen loves Stan, despite his massive flaws. If there's any growth for her it's in realizing her own flaws as a human and just accepting that she is who she is.
Will -- While we didn't see Demi Lovato's Jenny this week, we know that she is still carrying his child as a surrogate. He and Grace are moving forward (not looking back, he says repeatedly) and getting a house together to raise their children together because, quite frankly, they're just better together. But in the end, Will also manages to get the man as McCoy (Matt Bomer) returns to New York. He apologizes for freaking out and running over the prospect of settling down with kids. And while Will doesn't just rish into his arms, he does leave the door open for them to try, which is very mature and a good sign that maybe he can make this work. And if not, he's ready to make something work.
Grace - This time, the series ends with the close of a major chapter in Grace's life, just as the series began with a new chapter for her. This time, she is stepping into the wild and woolly world of motherhood. She stayed strong with her attitude that she doesn't care who the father is because she's ready to do this on her own. More importantly, she won't be on her own, as her and Will are going to continue to room together, only in a house big enough to raise their children together. It's really the happiest ending for these two, who've loved each other as tightly as any romantic couple in television history all these years.
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Series creators David Kohan and Max Mutchnick opened up about writing this second finale for the venerable series, and how they feel they got it more right this time around, in part because the world has continued to evolve in how it sees traditional relationships and families.
"Because of the way world changed since we were writing the first show, we were able to talk about non-traditional families, really there is no judgment of what a family is as long as it works for the family and I think that's where we were able to get to with this finale," Mutchnick told Deadline.
"It was a different landscape and a landscape that changed radically and quickly so it never felt like we were swimming upstream against the currents of history," Kohan agreed. "We were now with it."
As for the chance of a revival, considering there was no flash-forward this time around that would have to be undone or talked way as a strange dream, Mutchnick shut the idea down immediately.
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"We're not coming back. There's no version of us coming back," he said. "David and I don't want to do it anymore." He then acknowledged that it would ultimately be up to the network, but he and Kohan would rather they be done at this point.
And while viewers never got to see Stan on screen, very intentionally, the creators did reveal that there was a specific father written for Grace's baby, though we never actually got to meet him.
"She did leave out one person she was with in Europe and that's who the father is. There was a scheduling issue that made it impossible to happen," Mutchnick explained. "We had decided creatively that a past lover of hers was the father and she saw him in Europe."
Narratively, though, it ultimately didn't matter who it was because in this more modernized perspective on parenthood and family, the father is not key to her next chapter or the new baby. That may change as the baby gets older, but that's not a story we're planning to follow.
For now, the book of "Will & Grace" is closed, save for the goodbyes from the cast and from fans who've spent so many years with this show that went from groundbreaking and forward-thinking to being a reflection of our current world.
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One final bow. ❤️ #WillAndGraceFarewell pic.twitter.com/Aev4F3qvT4@WillAndGrace
Final bows... thank you to every single fan who's been there from day one and those who joined us for the reunion. We love you all... Stay tuned for the farewell retrospective special #WillandGrace pic.twitter.com/9ToKMm8Faa@EricMcCormack
The time has come! Thank you all for making these #WillandGrace years the most memorable ones. The Fab Four and all of you will always have a special place in my heart ❤️ #WillAndGraceFarewell pic.twitter.com/BVYfIR1kHv@DebraMessing
Thank you to ALL of the loyal and loving fans of "Will & Grace". This second go-around was a toast to you. ✋🏼❤️🤚🏼 #WillandGraceFarewell #WillandGrace pic.twitter.com/1jtxnsairv@SeanHayes
There are many things I'll miss about making WILL & GRACE, but what I'll miss most is pointing at people. Series finale starting now. #WillAndGraceFarewell pic.twitter.com/Q9kXJ8HTmN@MaxMutchnick
Won't be just any night,
Tonight there will be no morning star.
Tonight, tonight, we'll watch the end tonight...🎶 #WillandGrace https://t.co/3MP78muSOW
probably one of the shows, if not the only show, that could've rebooted and lasted this long a second time ❤ #WillAndGrace@cristinahughes_
That last scene with the empty apt hit me harder than I thought it would 😭💔 #WillAndGraceFarewell #WillAndGrace@Dina_Marie0221
I'd like to thank @MeganMullally and the cast of #WillandGrace for bringing so much joy and laughter into my life...You have made this an Unforgettable experience ♥️🍸 @RichardSith1228 pic.twitter.com/EBUPWjMIpY@vixkss_
#WillAndGrace's friendship means so much to me, they're always there for each other when it matters most after all these years & that's what has made me love them. i don't think there's a better friendship out there. i'll always love these two ❤️❤️ @EricMcCormack @DebraMessing pic.twitter.com/nDH9lGfa6n@willstruman
@WillAndGrace Farewell Episode was the best happy ending to end it just right. I was crying thinking about all the moments that made me love the Fab Four! #WillAndGrace forever. #WillAndGraceFarewell pic.twitter.com/0JYx7wt3p4@Clarence_Pryor
We are so lucky to have had a show like #WillAndGrace@astoldbyclyde
Thank you for everything💙 pic.twitter.com/ngFL0B7gll
I'm gonna miss you so much #WillandGrace !! pic.twitter.com/xuayf64PE0@_Piair
Thank you @WillAndGrace for taking us on such a poignant journey. These incomparable characters have been such an infinite inspiring blessing. We'll miss the laughs, but we'll always have the love to treasure.❤️@EricMcCormack @DebraMessing @SeanHayes @MeganMullally #WillAndGrace pic.twitter.com/X0h4PchMF9@StarryMag
𝑻𝒉𝒂𝒏𝒌 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝑨𝒍𝒍 𝒇𝒐𝒓 11 𝑭𝒂𝒃𝒖𝒍𝒐𝒖𝒔 𝑺𝒆𝒂𝒔𝒐𝒏𝒔 💖@LoLo_V1983
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