Earlier this year, it was announced that CBS plans to rekindle some of that King of Queens magic on Kevin Can Wait by making Leah Remini a series regular and cutting Erinn Hayes, who played Smith’s wife, from the cast. How will this “creative reset” work within the universe of the show? At a Television Critics Association panel today, CBS provided an easy answer: death. The show is planning to kill off Hayes’s character, then do a little time jump into the future, presumably so that the sitcom’s second season isn’t entirely haunted by the specter of death, and so Kevin James and Leah Remini — who plays an undercover cop and former partner of James’s — can have some light repartee. Perhaps they’ll be haunted by the horrors that transpired so that their new sitcom format could live, and Kevin Can Wait will rot from the inside like Denmark in Hamlet … but no, this is a show on CBS, so that’s not gonna happen.
Erinn Hayes. Photo: Michael Tran/FilmMagic