Back To You (2007-08)

The news, and the people who break the news, are seen with great regard. While this relationship has been the subject of multiple re-evaluations over the years, the personalities still can go on to be household names, and in some cases, their egos can go on to outshine the news itself. In 2007, a sitcom centred around the antics of pair of newscasters whose personal lives often pray havoc on their professional was broadcast, going by the name Back to You.

It’s good to see two sitcom legends back in the saddle.

Chuck Darling is a rising star in the Pittsburgh news circuit, after moving on to more lucrative pastures in L.A., his co-host Kelly Carr is left as the top anchor. However, Chuck’s fortunes changed 10 years later; after a foul-mouthed outburst, he’s back. Although Chuck may have some catching up to do. For instance, his former co-anchor was glad to see the back of him and is now upset he’s back hogging her limelight. He also has a kid, one conceived during a wild drunken one-night stand with Kelly, with the chaos of work and their personal lives, it’s a wonder how they fit in time for the actual news.

The newscaster’s private lives also make for some classic sitcom capers.

With a catchy intro by Adam Anders, Back to You certainly knows how to start the show off strongly, with its slick energy permeating into the show itself. Episodes in its sole season touch on its overarching arc between the Carr family dynamic caused by Chuck’s attempts to integrate into Gracie’s life and solo stories showing the dysfunctional relationships of the news staff. Picking the stories, they’ll hope will lead to getting the best slot, or avoiding an awkward interview. To clashes with their private lives, with Ryan inadvertently ending up as a third wheel on Chuck’s infamous “night of possibilities”. Back to You knows how to get at the best of its concept by exacerbating its character’s egos and exploring the situations that result because of that.

Other comedy stars like Josh Gad help populate Back To You.

Both Heaton and Grammer being renowned sitcom veterans is the ace in this workplace sitcom’s sleeve. It’s fun seeing them spar with each other, with their shared office space offering ample opportunity to butt heads. Other notable faces, soon-to-be T.V. Dad Ty Burnell as Gary Crezyzewski begrudging field reporter, and soon-to-be TV Judge, Ayda Field playing weather woman Montana Diaz Herrera. Although her character’s brief departure shows that the show was willing to play with the formula constantly. The late great Fred Willard shines as the sports reporter Marsh McGinley and Josh Gad who excels at an early point in his career playing Ryan Church the office manager.

Heaton stared on Back To You between her successful runs Everybody Loves Raymond and The Middle.

One of the many unfortunate shows culled in the wake of the Writer’s Strike, Back to You showed promise, from its fun premise down to the interplay of talent is a delight to watch. A simple but effective send-up to the world of professional newscasting and the personalities that run wild behind the scenes. While a lot has changed since the heady days of 2007, re-watching Back to You now suggests it may have been a little too early to give this show the sign-off.

While Grammer went on to star in Hank, and to pivot to more dramatic shows, Like Boss.

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