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Suzanne Pleshette joins ''8 Simple Rules'' as grandma

Suzanne Pleshette joins ”8 Simple Rules” as grandma. As the estranged wife of grandpa James Garner, she’ll help her daughter’s bereaved family in the first post-John Ritter episodes

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Katey Sagal, Suzanne Pleshette, ...
Suzanne Pleshette and Katey Sagal: Craig Sjodin

The parade of ’70s TV icons continues on the retooled ”8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter.” Following last week’s announcement that James Garner would be visiting for the first four episodes to be shot in the wake of star John Ritter’s sudden death last month, ABC has announced Suzanne Pleshette will also appear on the first of the new episodes, an hourlong special that will mark the sitcom’s Hennessy family’s first attempts to cope with the death of Ritter’s character.

The ”Rockford Files” star and the ”Bob Newhart Show” actress will play the parents of Katey Sagal’s newly widowed Cate Hennessy. The grandparents are separated, but they will come together to comfort their bereaved daughter and grandchildren on the special episode, airing Nov. 4 during the first week of the fall ratings sweeps month. It’s not clear whether Pleshette, who left the cast of NBC’s ”Good Morning, Miami” after last season, will appear in any additional episodes. Other guests are expected in the coming weeks to help comfort the mourning family.