When NBC announced it was reviving Will & Grace it had a lot of fans scratching their heads. The original series finale, which aired in 2006, featured several flash-forwards, revealing what happened to Will (Eric McCormack), Grace (Debra Messing), Karen (Megan Mullally) and Jack (Sean Hayes) over the course of two decades.
Ahead of the revival's debut, creators Max Mutchnick and David Kohan revealed they planned on dealing with the unpopular finale, which saw Will and Grace estranged for nearly 20 years, by ignoring it altogether. And that's exactly what they did.
As fans saw in the season premiere, the revival takes place in the present day and Will and Grace are once again living together after her recent divorce from Leo (Harry Connick Jr.). Will is no longer with Vince (Bobby Cannavale) and neither he nor Grace have any children. (Phew!)
Of course, the premiere didn't completely ignore the plot twists of the series finale, which included Karen going broke and Beverly Leslie (Leslie Jordan) being killed by a gust of wind. After taking a brief nap, Karen wakes up confused as to which parts of her dream were real and which were only creations of her imagination — setting up the perfect gag for the show to wink at the events of the original finale while also firmly establishing the new world order.
As Karen recalls, in her dream "Will was married to a swarthy man in uniform and Grace was married to a Jew doctor" - two things Will confirms while adding that he and Grace are both now single. Karen continues her probing, asking next what happened to Will and Grace's children who grew up and got married to each other, to which Will explains that neither of them ever had kids.
"Oh, what a relief. Nobody wants to see you two raise kids," Karen says with a laugh.
Will goes on to clarify that Stan is still alive and Karen is still very, very rich, much to her glee. And with that, the show was able to retcon an hour-long series finale in less than three-minutes. And you know what? We aren't mad about it.
Will & Grace airs Thursdays at 9/8c on NBC.