Brad Garrett, Joely Fisher, Eddie Kaye Thomas and Kat Foster in 'Til Death
After Everybody Loves Raymond ended, Brad Garrett could have gone and done his own spin-off. Instead, he took the risk of creating a whole new sitcom from scratch, playing a jaded husband shattering the dreams of newlyweds in 'Til Death.
Brad Garrett Talks 'Til Death
“It’s tough to play a guy that’s not very dimensional for too long,” said Garrett of his Raymond character. “What made Robert fun is he wasn’t dimensional. But he would have been married, he probably would’ve had kids, he probably again, with those same writers, I wouldn’t have been worried. I think he would have ended up a better father than Raymond. I think he would have ended up a better father than Frank. That would’ve been his only comeuppance for all the torture he had all those years. But here I get to play a guy with a very definite position and a very definite opinion. For an actor and for someone with a big mouth like myself, it’s exciting.”
Ever since Married with Children, sitcoms have shown unhappy marriages. It’s almost like we don’t want to see things work out on TV. “Look, how many happily married people do you know? Really, really, honestly. That being said, we’re trying to create people that are relatable, which the majority of people are not happily married. I’m not saying it can’t be done. It is a work in progress, there is no question about it. But comedy comes from pathos and conflict and unhappiness, going back to the beginning of time. It’s not funny when someone gets along.”
That’s not to say that 'Til Death will be a bad role model. Parents, let your kids view the truth about their future. “Hopefully the little children will be more aware of what life has in store, which is a realistic take that it’s about work. It’s about work and communication. Most of us aren’t great communicators outside of our marriage. When you get into marriage, it takes ten times the communication. I think the key for all the little kids is you’ve got to have yourself. I grew up in multiple marriages. My parents were great, they weren’t great together but they were great parents. I saw my parents get married several times. The key is just to have yourself. I know it sounds trite. I know it sounds cliché. Hopefully my kids will be raised where they’re an individual. They don’t find that person to complete their life. They’re completed people and then they find someone to add to their life.”
The show even includes little kids talking about marriage. “We want to get kids that aren’t actors, that are real and that are funny. You shoot a lot of them. You go to schools, you do that because we want it real. Every kid that was on that was real, so we’re going to try I think. I don't know how long we can continue that but we’re going to try.”
Garrett also receives a producer’s credit on 'Til Death, but that doesn’t mean he runs the show. “Beyond just being a title, I care about this very much. I don’t have the final say in any way, nor should I. I’m just a vote and I surrounded myself with people that have a lot more experience than I do, that are incredibly talented. I actually was able to take the Raymond camera crew, I got the Raymond sound crew. It’s a huge effort. Being a producer just makes me be able to say, ‘Boy, I’d like to try this.’ But I’m just a voice.”
'Til Death begins September 7 on Fox.
Stay tuned for updates.