'The Grinder' Cast Addresses Awkward Title, Rob Lowe's Handsomeness

The cast of Fox's Fred Savage, Rob Lowe comedy turned up at the TCA to tease the forthcoming sibling comedy.
Ray Mickshaw/FOX

Let’s get this out of the way: The Grinder cast is perfectly comfortable with its title.

While Fox’s sibling comedy starring Rob Lowe and Fred Savage shares a name with a gay hook-up app, the cast and crew suggested during their appearance at the Television Critics Association’s summer tour Thursday that they never considered changing its name. In fairness, The Grinder is more than simply the series’ title; it’s also the hit show-within-the-show, which starred Lowe’s character as a hot-shot lawyer who never takes no for an answer.

Which is not to say the Grinder group is above poking fun at the title, with Lowe telling the roomful of critics gathered that it's particularly fun to say: "I just like being able to tell people I’ll be grinding with them on Tuesday nights." Savage took it a step further, joking that the series could inspire a new app of its own: "You can find Rob Lowe anywhere and have sex with him," he pitched the room, adding to big laughs: "You're 400 feet from Rob ... "

That kind of good-natured humor continued throughout the upbeat panel, which bodes well for the buzzed-about comedy as it looks to cut through at a particularly crowded time in the TV landscape. There was perhaps no better example than when Lowe was asked if he and fellow Fox comedy star John Stamos (star of fall entry Grandfathered) got together and talked about being, as the critic posing the question noted, "almost criminally handsome."

Lowe didn’t miss a beat, having a lot of fun with the "almost criminally uncomfortable" question. Lowe reminded the Beverly Hilton ballroom that he was, in fact, a founding member of Jimmy Kimmel’s handsome men’s club, joking that Stamos has been up for membership for the club, which famously includes Josh Hartnett, Patrick Dempsey and Lenny Kravitz. "So far the board hasn’t voted him in. Sting is really lobbying hard. David Beckham had blackballed him every time he’s been close," he said of Stamos, adding with a wide grin: "But I am looking forward to when John eventually makes it in."

When asked a follow-up — yes, there was a follow up — if the two actors knew each other, Lowe began, "There’s been a rumor ... " before being cut-off by Stamos, who shouted from the back of the ballroom as he awaited his Grandfathered panel, "Rob, tell the truth, we've dated for years."