After 20 years, Candice Bergen’s irascible news journalist Murphy Brown will return to CBS for its “11th season” on Thursday.
The revival of “Murphy Brown” reunites Bergen, also an executive producer, with series creator and executive producer Diane English and original series co-stars Faith Ford, Joe Regalbuto and Grant Shaud.
It picks up as Murphy, following a brief retirement, is back hosting a cable news morning show, “Murphy in the Morning.” She is joined by her “FYI” team, including lifestyle reporter Corky Sherwood (Ford), investigative journalist Frank Fontana (Regalbuto), and her former news producer Miles Silverberg (Shaud). Shaud left “Murphy Brown” after eight seasons and his character left town for a new job.
Helping the “FYI” gang learn how to use social media is social media director Nik Dodani (Pat Patel). Murhpy’s now-adult son, Avery (Jake McDorman), will be a regular cast member this season. The last time we saw Avery, he was played by Haley Joel Osment, and used Murphy’s Sprint phone card — it was the ’90s after all — to track down Eldin Bernecky (Robert Pastorelli), Murphy’s live-in-painter-turned-nanny who left the show after its sixth season.
Though Avery is now an adult, he still lives with his mother. Needless to say it’s a bit awkward these days. Not only is Avery an adult, he is also a competitor to “Murphy in the Morning” on a rival news show. Avery is employed by the Wolf Network, which is definitely the sitcom’s take on Fox News Channel.
Sadly, Pastorelli died in 2004, as did Pat Corley in 2006, who played Phil, the owner of Phil’s Bar, a frequent hangout for the “FYI” gang. The “Murphy in the Morning” crew still frequents Phil’s Bar, which is now run by Phil’s sister, Phyllis (Tyne Daly).
As it did in the original run, “Murphy Brown” will tackle the current political climate, which will include references to President Donald Trump, his press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and a “Steve Bannon-esque” character, among others. English also said the show will do a #MeToo inspired storyline in the fourth episode.
“Murphy Brown” will premiere on CBS on Thursday, Sept. 27 at 9:30 p.m.