After a first season made controversial by the mere presence of openly gay characters, Will & Grace
returned triumphantly with renewed confidence and vigour. In their second season, sidekicks Jack and Karen (the very, very funny Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally) are more snide and gleefully obnoxious than ever; Will (Eric McCormack) has perfected his prickly panache; and in particular Grace (Debra Messing) has entered a whole new plane of sexy goofiness, diving even more headlong into physical comedy--such as the episode when, in order to woo a high school crush, she gets a water-padded bra that springs a leak. The writing has also become tighter, grown more deft in its gay and pop culture references (which were often self-conscious in the first season) and at juggling sustained storylines, such as the Immigration department investigating Jack's marriage to Karen's Salvadorian maid Rosario (Shelley Morrison), Grace and Will struggling to become less emotionally incestuous, and Jack seeking his biological father. The show excels at tackling emotional subjects (like Will discovering that his father, who has accepted and even embraced his homosexuality at home, has told his co-workers that Will is married to Grace) with a sharp comic eye.
Guest stars start to accumulate: Molly Shannon returns, Sydney Pollack and Debbie Reynolds play Will's dad and Grace's mom, Joan Collins appears as a rival designer, Neil Patrick Harris (Doogie Howser, MD) plays the leader of a going-straight support group, and Gregory Hines takes on a recurring role as Will's new boss, a high-powered lawyer who seduces Grace. Will & Grace mixes superb sitcom farce with sly sociopolitical commentary; the fusion is smart and consistently entertaining. --Bret Fetzer
The complete second season of the popular US sitcom. In 'Guess Who's Not Coming to Dinner' Grace shocks her assembled guests - Karen, Rob and Ellen - when she throws a party without Will. 'Election' has Grace run against Will in the elections for the presidency of the tenants' association. 'Das Boob' sees Grace garner the fresh attentions of an old crush thanks to a flattering newspaper photo. 'Whose Mum is it Anyway?' finds Jack and Rosario trying to convince an INS agent, who Jack just happens to have once slept with, that they are really married. In 'Polk Defeats Truman' Will drops all his other clients in order to focus on Harlin, but Harlin has a surprise for him. 'To Serve and Disinfect' sees Will accept a job as a waiter, only to find that he will be serving dinner to some of his former legal associates. 'Homo for the Holidays' has Will and Grace shocked to discover that Jack's mother, who has come for a visit, does not know he is gay. 'Terms of Employment' sees Will hired by Grace to sue one of her clients. In 'I Never Promised You an Olive Garden' Will and Grace become friends with an ultra-cool couple who they meet at a dim sum restaurant. 'Tea and Total Lack of Sympathy' finds Jack and Grace eager to appear on 'Antiques Roadshow'. 'Seeds of Discontent' has Will asked to donate some of his sperm to a worthy cause. 'He's Come Undone' sees Will disturbed by the dreams he keeps having about Grace. In 'Oh Dad, Poor Dad, He's Kept Me in the Closet and I'm So Sad' Will and Grace are invited to a family dinner by Will's father George, who pretends they are married in order to avoid acknowledging his son's sexuality. 'Acting Out' sees Will and Jack protest the removal of a gay kiss from a TV sitcom. 'Advise and Resent' has Grace forced to listen to Karen's unwanted advice when she has troubles with her new boyfriend. 'Hey La, Hey La, My Ex-Boyfriend's Back' finds Will excited when Grace takes on one of his ex-boyfriends as a client. In 'The Hospital Show' Stan has had a heart attack and Karen is called to the hospital. In 'Sweet and Sour Charity' Grace wins concert tickets from a radio show and decides to volunteer to help out at a local community centre but her social calendar gets in the way. In 'An Affair to Remember' Will and Grace are asked to be best man and maid of honour at Rob and Ellen's wedding but the wedding is called off when Ellen finds out that Grace slept with Rob. In 'Girls Interrupted' Grace is convinced that Val is a kleptomaniac and Jack and Karen go to an ex-homosexual meeting. In 'There But For the Grace of Grace' Will and Grace visit an old professor of theirs who has his own Grace and Karen discovers there is a place called a 'kitchen'. In My Best Friend's Tush' Grace is up against a famous designer (Joan Collins) and Karen is there to help find the dirt. In 'Ben? Her? - Part 1' Will decides to try and make peace between Grace and Ben but things don't go quite according to plan. In the final part of the second season, 'Ben? Her? - Part 2', Will decides his life is a mess and runs away to a Caribbean island...