TV Land's "Hot in Cleveland" has certainly proven that it has what it takes to produce quality comedy that also happens to feature some very strong and entertaining women. Fortunately for those who have a fondness for old comedy, the third season in particular has showcased some of the great talents of sitcoms past.
Who doesn't look back at the "Mary Tyler Moore Show" with a great deal of fondness? For those who do, the appearance of Ed Asner on the series opposite the feisty Elka no doubt reminds them of these two formidable talents' previous collaborations on the set of that earlier comedy series. Indeed, Asner shows in this role that he is still at the top of his game, and who cannot help but love his crotchety ways? With him and Betty White working together, nothing can stand in their way.
Although Don Rickles may not be as well-known to some of the series' younger viewers, the older demographic no doubt remembers him for his comedy routines and his appearances on numerous television series and sitcoms throughout his decades-long career. On "Hot in Cleveland," he makes a spectacular appearance as Elka's husband, long believed to be dead but in reality still alive. Again, we see one of the greats of comedy get to interact with one of the genre's leading ladies, and both Rickles and White consistently show that, even after all of these years, they are still at the top of their comedy game.
Moving to a slightly younger generation, Sean Hayes also makes a guest appearance on the show, playing a role significantly (or perhaps not so significantly) different than his most famous role, that of Jack in the hit sitcom "Will and Grace." However, he still has his signature sense of comedic timing, and that little flare for the dramatic that made his earlier role such a stupendous success and such an iconic role. Here's hoping that we'll see more of the versatile Hayes in future seasons of "Hot in Cleveland."
If "Hot in Cleveland" has succeeded at anything, it's in bringing the best of the past of comedy into the present. Doing so not only allows younger viewers to get an insight into the history of this successful genre, but also allows older viewers to revisit and think about the reasons that they fell in love with sitcoms in the first place.