After nearly a decade of working behind the camera, Fred Savage is returning to his TV acting roots. The former Wonder Years star has signed on to the cast of Fox’s comedy pilot The Grinder as Stewart Sanderson, the brother of Rob Lowe’s titular TV-lawyer-turned-giant-sandwich, Dean. Stewart’s life as a hard-working attorney is thrown into disarray when his famous brother returns home to take the reins of the family’s law firm, thrusting him back into his Rob-Lowe-shaped shadow.
If it gets picked up to series, The Grinder will be Savage’s first regular TV gig since the short-lived family sitcom Crumbs, which aired on ABC for three weeks back in 2006. In the interim, Savage has developed a solid reputation as a TV comedy director and producer, contributing episodes to some of the most critically lauded sitcoms of the last decade, including It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Party Down, and Modern Family. Now he’ll bring all of that accumulated life experience and gravitas back in front of the camera to face off against the blinding forcefield of Rob Lowe’s mid-2010s charm offensive, hopefully convincing America that he’s no longer the 13-year-old kid they still picture when they think of Fred Savage (or visit his Wikipedia page, which inexplicably still has a picture from 1989 as its main image for the 38-year-old father of three).