Fans left devastated by major Will & Grace plot twist
WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for Will & Grace Season 7 Episode 6.
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Fans were split over Will & Grace’s midseason finale, as the show killed off a major original character.
The show said goodbye to fan favourite Rosario Salazar, Karen’s maid and frequent sparring partner.
The character had been conspicuously absent from the show during the revival run after actress Shelley Morrison decided not to return to the role.
Morrison, who is 80, explained that she has retired from acting and declined to return to film an exit – leaving it up to the show to explain the mysterious absence of her acerbic housekeeper.
She had been referred to several times off-screen during the run, but Thursday’s episode, ‘Rosario’s Quinceanera’, saw her killed off for good.
The episode sees Karen left devastated by the maid’s sudden death from a heart attack, just as she was planning her a ‘Quinceanera’ to celebrate 15 years of menopause.
Will, Grace and Jack rally to support Karen at Rosario’s funeral, as some of her old friends make an appearance.
Minnie Driver made a comeback as Karen’s nemesis Lorraine Finster, while Charles C Stevenson returned as perpetually-depressing barkeep Smitty.
Driver’s character serves to antagonise everyone, stealing jewellery from Karen and Grace before making her exit from the funeral.
Karen, meanwhile, is busy burying her feelings by getting extra-drunk and being extra-mean to Jack.
However, an intervention from Will convinces her to go and say one last goodbye to Rosario.
Standing over Rosario’s coffin, she says: “Sorry I wasn’t here, but what the hell was I going to say. She was my maid, she was my sparring partner… she was my best friend.”
She emotionally confesses: “You were my everything, Rosario. People keep asking me, what do you need, what do you need? I need for you to not be gone.”
Karen opts to stay away from the burial, saying: “I just can’t watch them put you in the ground. I have to remember you my way.”
Speaking in Spanish, she says: “Te amo, Mami.”
The episode split fans of the show, with some wishing that Rosario had been quietly retired or given a happy ending.
One added: “I know Shelley Morrison declined coming back but damn, did they have to kill off Rosario?!”
But some felt the episode giving Rosario a send-off was perfect.
One fan wrote: “How are we supposed to live without Rosario on #WillAndGrace? Her relationship with Karen was comedic gold. I’m officially in mourning.”
Another added: “I shouldn’t be this upset about a fictional character from a comedy show dying R.I.P. Rosario Inés Consuelo Yolanda Salazar #WillAndGrace”
Others praised Megan Mullally’s amazing emotional performance as Karen, joking: “So, that’s what it feels like to have Megan Mullally rip your heart out and leave you literally sobbing.”
The revival had already introduced a new maid for Karen Walker, played by Guiding Light star Mary Pat Gleason.
Gleason’s character Bridget is introduced as one of many members of the increasingly-wealthy Karen’s household staff, who are trying to negotiate a raise.
Bridget had been introduced in episode two, when an off-screen Rosario was negotiating a raise.
She said: “Rosario sent me up. I’m here to represent the staff. We’d like a raise. Rosario said, don’t leave until the woman pays us what we want.”
Karen jokes: “Did she call me the A-word, the B-word or the C-word?”, to which Bridget confirms all three.
The character made another appearance in last night’s midseason finale, confirming her recurring status.
McCormack, Messing, Hayes and Mullally had been on the PR trail ahead of the show’s return.
They made a bizarre appearance on a new talk show hosted by conservative former Fox News personality Megyn Kelly last month.
Kelly appeared visibly uncomfortable throughout an excruciating interview with the cast.
The host then spoke to a fan of the show, asking: “Is it true that you became a lawyer, and became gay, because of Will?”
Asked why the cast had agreed to appear, she said: “I honestly I didn’t know it was [Megyn Kelly] until that morning. The itinerary just said Today Show appearance. Regret going on. Dismayed by her comments.”