In the midst of last week's storm surrounding CBS and "The Reagans," you may have missed something sweet and lovely that happened over on ABC.
On Tuesday night, the cast, producers and writers of "8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter" took their tragic loss of a co-star and friend and, in a nod to moving on, created honest, wonderful television. Considering the way television can bungle these things, the sitcom's return without John Ritter, whose sudden death of an aortic dissection in September shocked so many, could have been a lot worse.
In the immediate aftermath of John Ritter’s death, it was hard to take issue with ABC’s decisions, since execs were thrust into an untenable situation.Since then, however, there has been a vague ghoulishness surrounding the show, including big viewer tune-in for the remaining Ritter episodes and ABC News’ synergistic efforts such as Diane Sawyer’s interview with the actor’s widow, Amy Yasbeck.Predictably, if morbidly, Tuesday’s one-hour return episode drew a vast audience, bolstering ABC’s sweeps bottom line.The Charmed actress captioned her photo, 'A little #8simplerules reunion party today with a tiny addition �� @kateylous @martinspanjers @amy_davidson #lennoxsawyerlockwood (someone is smiling down on us)!'That 'someone' referred to John Ritter, who played the patriarch of the programme's central Hennessy family.Though producers attempted to replace him with a younger star, the show died only a season later.