‘Last Man Standing’: Tim Allen on How ‘Both Left & Right’ Will Be Laughing in Season 7
You can’t knock down conservative, cantankerous Mike Baxter (Tim Allen). The opinionated marketing director at Outdoor Man sporting goods stores returns in Last Man Standing after a year and a half off the air. (ABC canceled the show in 2017.)
The sitcom’s seventh season will now air on Fox, but the premise remains the same. Mike is still outnumbered by women — dynamic wife Vanessa (Nancy Travis) and their three spirited grown-up daughters, Kristin (Amanda Fuller), Mandy (Molly McCook), and Eve (Kaitlyn Dever).
Below, Allen gets real about the comeback.
How’s the vibe on set?
Tim Allen: Everybody’s grateful. We feel like we should be jumping up and down, popping sparkling grape juice bottles. We’re right back doing the work. And excited as heck.
What’s in store for the Baxters?
A year has gone by in their lives. Mike’s dad, Bud [Robert Forster], passes away. Mike and Vanessa deal with sadness and an empty nest. I was worried — I don’t want to get into marriage trouble! They rediscover each other. Their marriage evolves.
But their offspring are still around and causing conflict, right?
We find ways! I have two girls of my own, so I love that [the comedy] is laid on top of a dad and his daughters. Eve, the youngest, is home on leave from the Air Force Academy. Middle Mandy’s husband, Ryan [Jordan Masterson], can’t stay off the 24-hour news cycle and it seeps into relationships. Oldest Kristin’s son, Boyd [Jet Jurgensmeyer], is not a little kid anymore.
Are Mike and his guy friends still politically incorrect?
Jon Adams [neighbor Chuck], Héctor Elizondo [business owner Ed], and myself were just crying laughing while shooting a scene. How men really talk is nonsensical. It’s how men bond. It’s not politically incorrect; it’s just who we are.
Mike’s conservative opinions have always caused friction. Does this season tackle the division in our country?
We deal with how family can’t discuss anything political anymore if you’re on opposite sides. But both left and right should be laughing at our show — we point out the ironies of both. Mike makes fun of bleeding hearts but stands for connection between friends and family.
Last Man Standing, Season 7 Premiere, Friday, September 28, 8/7c, Fox