Tim Allen has gotten very lucky when it comes to the sitcom game. In less than 30 years, he's managed to star in two long-running family sitcoms and create two iconic television characters: Tim Taylor from Home Improvement, and Mike Baxter on Fox's Last Man Standing. Now that the latter show is heading into its ninth and final season, beginning in January, Allen is bringing fans a Home Improvement / Last Man Standing crossover when he appears on screen as both of his famous characters for the first time. And, Allen is also now revealing what happened to Tim Taylor after Home Improvement ended.
Last Man Standing fans (as well as fans of Tim Allen) were pleasantly shocked a few weeks ago when the trailer for Season 9 was revealed and we saw that Allen would be bringing his classic Home Improvement character back for the last season of his current series. And, while there have been guest appearances from Allen's former co-stars Patricia Richardson, Jonathan Taylor Thomas (who also directed an episode), and Richard Karn, none of them actually played their Home Improvement characters, making Allen's outing as Tim Taylor meeting Mike Baxter extra special.
So, what has Tim Taylor been up to in the over two decades since we last saw him? Here's what Tim Allen told Entertainment Tonight:
Taylor lost his TV show. Tool Time is over. He had a neighbor that passed away. He's now working on the corporate side of [Binford] Tools. That's what he does. Baxter's helping Tim Taylor cope with change... They're not nice to each other. They're kind of antagonistic.
Well, all of this makes sense, right? As evidenced by the popularity and long runs of Last Man Standing and Home Improvement, even, no show can truly last forever, so of course Tim Taylor eventually lost Tool Time (the home improvement show within a show which the character hosted). And, is sounds like Allen is going to be able to use this crossover to pay an on screen tribute to actor Earl Hindman, who played the Taylor's neighbor and Tim's much wiser sounding board, Wilson, on the '90s hit and died in 2003.
And, as we know, Mike Baxer has had to deal with a lot of change over the course of Last Man Standing, so if anyone can help the grunting Tim Taylor adjust to all the newness in his life, it's him. But, frequently, when two people who are this much alike get together for any reason, they tend not to like each other (at least at the beginning), so it does make a lot of sense that these manly men would be "kind of antagonistic" as they get to know one another. Plus, I have to admit, having them snipe at each other is probably going to be way more fun than having them see eye to eye immediately.
Last Man Standing will have its time-jumping Season 9 debut on Sunday, January 3 at 8:30 p.m. EST on Fox, and make its time slot premiere later that week, on Thursday, January 7 at 9:30 p.m. EST. For more on what to watch in the coming weeks, check out our guide to all of the Christmas specials and movies, and see what else is on the small screen in early 2021!