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The Will & Grace Revival Included Debbie Reynolds in the Sweetest Way Possible

The comedy's holiday episode featured the most touching tribute to the late legend.

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Sean Hayes on Working with Debbie Reynolds
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One key member of the Will & Grace family was missing when the series returned to NBC earlier this year. Debbie Reynolds, who played Grace's (Debra Messing) mother Bobbi Adler on the show, passed away last December, one day after daughter Carrie Fisher's death. 

The Will & Grace cast honored the late legend nearly one year after her passing in the comedy's special holiday episode Tuesday night. The episode saw Grace, Will (Eric McCormack), Karen (Megan Mullally), and Jack (Sean Hayes) transport back in time to the early 20th century in New York during a visit to the Irish tenement museum in the hopes of catching the Christmas spirit. A portrait of Reynolds dressed in period garb hung on the wall in several of the scenes to pay tribute to the actress.

Messing shared a photo of herself with the portrait on the set of Will & Grace on Instagram prior to the episode's airing. "Debbie is with me in tonight’s flashback Christmas Episode," she wrote. "I love that portrait of her. It captures her Light."

Debbie is with me in tonight’s flashback Christmas Episode. I love that portrait of her. It captures her Light. ❤️

A post shared by Debra Messing (@therealdebramessing) on


Reynolds touched the lives of the entire Will & Grace cast, including Hayes, who shared his favorite memories of the late actress when he appeared on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen in September (clip above). "She was a broad. She [had] a dark, dark sense of humor. I can't even repeat half the stuff she said on the show," he recalled. "She was hilarious, but a very dirty woman in the best way possible."

Jack (Sean Hayes) and Bobbi (Debbie Reynolds) during an episode from Will & Grace's original run. 

Messing penned a touching note on Instagram following Reynolds' passing in 2016. "My heart is literally broken. For 8 years she was my mom. She was pure energy & light when she came on stage. She was loving, and bawdy, and playful- a consummate pro- old school and yet had the work ethic and investment in her craft of a new fiery up and comer. She was always running off to Vegas or somewhere else 'on the road' to be a hoofer, to sing and dance and make people laugh. She performed 340 days out of the year," Messing reminisced about her TV mom. "An inspiration on every level. A Legend of course, the epitome of clean cut American optimism, dancing with Gene Kelly as an equal, a warrior woman who never stopped working. A devoted mother and grandmother, and aunt and great aunt, and friend. I lost my mom a few years ago. She loved that Debbie was my TV mom. I hope they find each other and hug and kiss and my mom says, 'I got you, Debbie. Carrie's waiting for you.' RIP Bobbie Adler."

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