Some new folks are headed to Cleveland: Comedienne Sandra Bernhard and talk-show maven Kathie Lee Gifford have recently signed on to guest star in the upcoming third season of TV Land’s original comedy Hot in Cleveland, EW can exclusively confirm, and we’ve got some details about their roles.
Both women will actually be appearing in roles with which they’re rather familiar. Bernhard is set to play the love interest of Melanie’s (Valerie Bertinelli) lesbian sister, which hearkens to the role she played on Roseanne years ago. Her episode has yet to be scheduled.
Meanwhile, Today fourth hour host Kathie Lee Gifford will appear in the show’s Nov. 30 premiere as the host of Cleveland’s local talk show, The Babble, which the self-obsessed former soap star Victoria (Wendie Malick) is hoping to join as co-host. In fact, Victoria gets wind that The Babble is looking for a Rosie O’Donnell or Sara Gilbert type for the show and makes a play to become a permanent host on the show by announcing her recent, drug-induced marriage to Joy (Jane Leeves) as a way to make a splash. Gifford mentioned her Cleveland guest role on Today last week, when she said she was reading the script and “had to go to the ladies room, it was so funny.”
The first part of Hot in Cleveland‘s third season — that’s expected to be 12 of the 22 episodes ordered — will premiere Nov. 30 at 10 p.m. and will be followed by the series premiere of new sitcom The Exes, which is about three divorced men who live together (Donald Faison, Wayne Knight, and David Alan Basche) and their divorce attorney (Kristen Johnston) who lives across the hall from them.
Cleveland‘s third season will focus on whether Elka (Betty White) will indeed stay with Fred (Buck Henry), who she was supposed to marry in the season finale before learning that her first husband (played by Don Rickles) was still alive. It will also delve further into the backstories of Joy, Melanie, and Victoria. Family, too, is a big theme, as Victoria’s daughter, played by Jennifer Love Hewitt, and Melanie’s son, played by Joe Jonas, are both set to return.
Tanner on Twitter: @EWTanStransky