‘Kevin Can Wait’ Star Talks About The Death Of Her TV Mom, How Leah Remini Changes Things For Season 2

Kevin Can Wait is a comedy—and it will stay that way, despite an unexpected death storyline that will be addressed in Season 2. On the heels of the surprising news that Erinn Hayes’ character, Donna Gable, has been killed off of Kevin James’ CBS sitcom, Kevin Can Wait star Mary-Charles Jones, who plays middle child Sara Gable, told CinemaBlend the second season of the show will not kick off with the Gable family in mourning over the loss of their matriarch. Instead, Donna’s death will be a past event and the family will be well into their healing process a year later.

“I think that it’s still very much a comedy and we start off on a very high and happy note, but we definitely do touch on it and make it very clear,” Jones said of her TV mom’s death.

“It’s been a year since the death of their mom. It’s been a bit of a time jump but it’s still very much present in the lives, in the situations. But we do start off without as much tragedy. And it’s been a year, so there’s time for healing. So we’re in the more of a moving on process.”

[Image by Jeffrey Neira/CBS]

Jones went on to say that while she was surprised when she first learned that her TV mom played by Erinn Hayes would be killed off of Kevin Can Wait, she was happy to hear that Kevin James’ longtime King of Queens co-star Leah Remini would be joining the cast.

“I was a bit surprised [about Donna dying] but at the same time, it’s really nothing to do with Erinn, she was wonderful,” Jones told CinemaBlend.

“It was just something in the show wasn’t working and we wanted to go in a bit of a different direction. I was surprised, but I also found out that Leah was joining us, and she’s been super wonderful and very gracious and welcoming to the entire cast and the writers are super excited and we have a great opportunity with Kevin being a single dad for some storylines.”

[Image by Jeffrey Neira/CBS]

The decision to kill off the Kevin Can Wait mom was a bit of a controversial one for a sitcom, but the producers and cast seem to think it was the best way to explain Donna’s absence amid the show’s creative reset. But one thing that won’t be explained right away is Donna Gable’s cause of death. Kevin Can Wait executive producer Rock Reuben told TV Guide viewers will not find out how Donna died until it makes sense for the story.

“We’re coming up about a year later, the family is pulling itself back together,” Reuben told TV Guide. “If it becomes necessary for a story, we’ll do it, but otherwise, we’re going to kind of — the show is about moving forward.”

The second season of Kevin Can Wait will focus on Kevin as a single dad as he goes back to work with his old police partner, Vanessa Cellucci (Remini).

“It’s going to be focusing a bit more on the aspects of him learning how to handle being a single dad,” Jones told CinemaBlend. “My character, she just doesn’t have a mom anymore so she’s kind of having to talk with her dad about these things that she would probably talk about with her mom because she’s a teenager.”

[Image by Jeffrey Neira/CBS]

The original premise of Kevin Can Wait was that Kevin Gable (played by Kevin James) was a retired police officer ready to spend more time with his family. The shift for Season 2 is significant as widowed Kevin is now required to go back to work to support his brood.

“I think that Season 2 is going to not be more of like a repeat of Season 1,” Jones admitted. “I think this season is going to be extremely wonderful to watch, just to also see Kevin and Leah get more time together because when they’re in a scene together it’s so wonderful, just the way that they’re able to flow off of each other.”


Kevin Can Wait Season 2 premieres Monday, September 25 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.

[Featured Image by Jeffrey Neira/CBS]

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