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"Mommies and daddies always come back." is a wonderful quote to comfort young children when their parents go out and leave them at home. In this instance, it's a sad statement. I have been described as ten pounds of sap in a five pound sack, so this first episode of 8 Simple Rules... without John Ritter was a "snot-ball tear fest" for me.

From the teaser segment - where Cate gets a call and franticly runs out (we didn't need to know what the call was about) - to the very end, it proved to be an effectively poignant (read "sad") episode with the occasional laugh. It's all handled in the best possible taste, and (thankfully) without the intrusion of a laugh track.

Paul Hennessy went in the same manner as the man who played him, and possibly eulogized in the same manner. The portrayal of the family in grief is very real, and could be attributed to a cast that really was a family of it's own grieving. Even James Garner and Suzanne Pleshette as Cate's parents help this TV family ground themselves through the transition.

All together a perfect first step for the series. I can only hope that the series manages to continue.
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