Oh Dad, Poor Dad, He's Kept Me in the Closet and I'm So Sad is the 13th episode of the second season and 35th overall.

Will finds out that his father George has been implying to his co-workers that his son is straight. Karen's private detective finds Jack's biological father.


Captain Lenny

Will is excited that his father George is in town for a meeting. When he learns that his father is actually being honored with a lifetime achievement award, he and Grace surprise him by attending the event. There, they learn that George has been telling his co-workers that Will is married to Grace. Will is upset by this but he refuses to believe that his father would deny the truth without a good reason so Will decides to confront him before the ceremony.

George ultimately admits to Will that the reason he did not tell people that his son is gay is because he is afraid they are too small-minded to understand and might judge Will for it. Will is touched by this, and he expresses understanding that his father lied to protect him. As George is given his award later, he announces to his colleague how proud he is to have a gay son.



Jack and John

Jack is still depressed after learning that he is a result when his mother had anonymous sex with a man at a party, so Karen hires a detective to find who his biological father is and finds a man named John Marshall. She sets Jack up to meet with John to surprise him but the two confusingly think that they are on a blind date, as John also turns out to be gay.

When Karen arrives, he tells the two of them about the setup and what her detective found. John, however refutes this as he says he has never had sex with a woman, implying he is not actually Jack's father. John and Jack then proceed with their date.





  • Oscar winner Sydney Pollack's first appearance as George Truman. Pollack is mainly known for directing and producing films, though he also starred in the comedy Tootsie (1982) where his character is also named George.
    • Producer David Kohan served as Pollack's assistant prior to being a writer, and was the one who invited Pollack to appear in the show.[1]
  • Title is a reference to the play (later film) Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad (1967).
  • While telling Will's coming out story, George mentions Will asking permission to bring his boyfriend for Christmas. However, Will's boyfriend was never mentioned during the flashbacks in the episode Lows in the Mid-Eighties set around the time he came out to his family and friends.

Cultural references

  • Grace recalls his father watching the Baretta on TV when she was accepted to Columbia. The series, however, originally aired until 1978 only, seven years before Grace's freshman year (and when she was just 11 years old). However, she may simply be talking about a rerun.
  • George complements Grace by telling her she is looking more like old Hollywood actress Rita Hayworth, who also had red hair. In the episode Ice Cream Balls, Grace mistakes a picture of Hayworth as a her.
  • When Grace recalls her father not inviting her to anything other than his lower GI series (examination of the colon), she mentions painter Norman Rockwell famous for his work showcasing the American family and culture, including the Four Freedoms series.
  • While planning to surprise George at the ceremony, Will sarcastically mentions "Harpo and Zeppo could bring in the Dean's wife, and we'll all sail to Freedonia", referring to members of the vaudevillian family of comedians, the Marx Brothers. The fictional country of Freedonia is the setting of the brothers' 1933 film Duck Soup.
  • Karen plans to set Jack's meeting with his father and telling him "Jack, there's a daddy in this room... And I'm not talkin' Puff," a reference to rapper Sean Combs known by his stage name Puff Daddy. This is also a tongue-in-cheek reference to the offensive use of the term "puff" to refer to a gay man.
  • When Grace describes her preparing her outfit similar "building a boat", Will tells her, "I had a bottle of champagne, I'd smash it over your head". This is a reference to the popular tradition of breaking a champagne bottle over the bow of a new ship during its launch.
  • Upon learning that he is on a date with his father, Jack compares himself to Soon-Yi Previn, adoptive daughter of actress Mia Farrow, who later married Farrow's romantic partner Woody Allen. Soon-Yi was previously mentioned in Grace, Replaced.
  • At the cafe, Karen uses the Pig Latin for "creepy", eepycray.



Grace:I wish I got this excited when my dad came to visit me.
Will:Come on, your dad's great.
Grace:Yeah, in a parallel universe where my hair's straight and so are you.

Ah, fathers. Yeah. Mine withheld affection for me for 30 years. Then I found out he's not really my father, and my whole life has been a big lie... I'm sorry. Did I bring everybody down? Jack

George:Got a hot date, Jackie?
Jack:No, but the guy who's dating me does.
Jack:Who's your daddy?
Karen:You are.
Jack:Who's my daddy? Oh, that's right. Some stranger in a Nixon mask who boinked my mother at a pool party in '68.
Karen:God, that is awful... who in the world would have a pool party?

Buying something is not gonna make me feel any better. Although the new Prada slip-on wouldn't make me feel any worse. Jack

Lord, you are just as simple as that blouse you're wearing. Karento Grace not understanding the setup

Grace:So basically, you made me feel like an idiot because you're making a father/son reunion all about you.
Karen:Honey, I think maybe it's those pink go-go boots that are making you feel like an idiot.
Will:You haven't told these people I'm gay?
Will's Dad:You walk around telling all your colleagues that I'm straight?
Will:I think it's implied!

It warms my heart to hear you say that... Or maybe it's the gin rickey I just had in the limo. Hahaha! Even on skid row I'm funny. Karen

Oh, I hit on my father! I'm Soon-Yi. Ugh. Jack

Dick was big that year. KarenNixon in 1968


  1. Will on Will & Grace
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