Back To You ? Season 1
Kelsey Grammer, Patricia Heaton, Fred Willard
Originally aired Fox 2007-08
3 DVD 17 episodes
Fox Home Video 2008

You would think a situation comedy with Kelsey Grammer of Cheers and Frasier fame and Patricia Heaton of Everybody Loves Raymond would last more than 14 of 17 episodes and one season. Watching Back To You Season 1 allows the viewer to play Monday Morning quarterback or, in this case, Wednesdays at 8 quarterback. This may be a bit difficult as Back To You was as okay as anything else on TV in 2007-08

The premise for Back to You is star anchorman Chuck Darling (Kelsey Grammer) returns to host the Pittsburgh newscast after being fired from his dream L.A. gig. There he finds former co-anchor Kelly Carr (Patricia Heaton) is still behind the anchor desk and the mother a daughter he did not know he had. Carr and Darling do not, of course, get along that well.

The pilot episode does what every situation comedy pilot episode does: introduce a bunch of secondary characters whose actors hope will stick around. Fred Willard, who plays the airhead sports anchor, is wasted most of the time. Unavoidably, one of the characters is a reporter who is always sent to cover stupid events and gets hurt.

I have always believed you can judge the confidence producers have in a sitcom by how much canned yuks they add. The more yuks, the less confidence. Back To You Season 1 proves this theory true as the laugh track is rather overwhelming.

There are some excellent episodes in Back To You, Season One. Episode 2 on DVD 1, Fish Story, would have been a television comedy classic had the show lived.

Other good episodes include A Gentleman Always Leads where Chuck tries to get the lead story away from Kelly and The New Boss.

Some Back To You episodes, like Cradle to Grave, have a decent primary story but a weak secondary story.

Lesser shows include A Night of Possibilities where the anchors try to show they are not set in their ways and Gracie’s Bully

You do get the feeling Back To You would have become much better had it been renewed and then would have become a long running series.

DVD 3 of Back To You Season 1 has the special features: Two featurettes: Making Of and This Just In,  and a gag reel.

FYI: Other failed sitcoms about television have included The Brian Benben Show and Welcome to New York with Jim Gaffigan and Sara Gilbert. Good ones include The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Larry Sanders Show.


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