During its six years on the air, not much seems to have changed about That '70s Show. The actors all still pretty much look the same. The characters — from prissy Jackie (Mila Kunis) to playboy Kelso (Ashton Kutcher) to conspiracy freak Hyde (Danny Masterson) — have many of the same quirks and looks. And it's certainly as popular as it's ever been. Still, there's at least one big difference between now and then.
"There are a lot nicer cars in our parking lot now," jokes Jackie Filgo, the sitcom's executive producer. "And better parking spaces."
Once this fall season gets rolling, there'll be more than just automotive changes going on. For instance, Filgo says Eric (Topher Grace) and Donna (Laura Prepon) decide to back off their marriage plans — since he just wants to hang around his house being, in his words, "a bum."
Meanwhile, Hyde meets his real father, who turns out to be African-American, played by Tim Reid (Frank's Place, WKRP in Cincinnati). Says Filgo: "He'll be like, 'This makes so much sense to me. My 'fro, my suspicion of the Man....' Later, we're going to meet Hyde's half sister, who dates Kelso, much to the chagrin of Hyde."
Kelso's ex-girlfriend, Jackie, will end up moving back home with her mom, who will be played once again by Brooke Shields. Donna's mother, played by Tanya Roberts, will also return for at least a handful of episodes. And forlorn Fez will "find his true calling," according to Filgo. "He'll start working at a beauty salon."
With all this going on, it would seem like the show could run for another six seasons. However, rumors persist that the cast wants to call it quits at the end of this year. Filgo insists that such talk is only because the deal the actors made in Season 3 ends after this season. Thus, she won't confirm or deny that the series is about to go the way of other '70s relics, like Peter Frampton and Famolare shoes, and fade off into pop-culture heaven.
However, Filgo does add that whenever That '70s Show's last episode is filmed, "it'll be a really small story, judging from the pilot. The best, most organic way to finish is back in Eric's basement, with all the kids. That would keep the show true to its original spirit."