'Everybody Loves Raymond' Reunion Special Could Happen, If Only Someone Would Say Yes To It

Everybody Loves Raymond was one of those late '90s sitcoms that my parents watched constantly on TV. For a sitcom with positive reviews and few spots on top TV lists (including a 60th ranking of best all-time series by TV Guide), it sounds like a reunion special would be a cinch. After all, it worked for its popular contemporary, Friends, with a "The One Where They Get Back Together" reunion released on HBO Max. Everyone Loves Raymond also won a total of 15 Emmy Awards out of its 69 nominations, including 10 for acting. Getting a Raymond reunion is no biggie, right?

However, the Raymond reunion special is not for certain.

As reported at Deadline, series creator Phil Rosenthal told SiriusXM's Pop Culture Spotlight that he's had a lot of difficulty finding a studio to house a reunion special. "We can do a reunion special, we can tell the stories of the things that have happened to us at home...and it seemed to work for Friends and, no takers." But he has not lost hope. "Maybe someone will hear this and say, 'Hey, this seems like a no brainer.' I think people like the show, I think they would like to see the cast together."

As of now, it's unknown what a Raymond reunion special would entail. In the case of Friends, it featured the original cast and a slew of celebrity guest stars, including Lady Gaga, Kit Harington, and Justin Bieber.

Everybody Disregards Raymond?

Everybody Loves Raymond ran from 1996 to 2005, lasting nine seasons. It starred Ray Romano as Ray Barone, a sportswriter and beloved family everyman. The series also featured Patricia Heaton as Ray's overworked wife, Brad Garrett as his jealous brother, Doris Roberts as his doting mother, and Peter Boyle as his judgmental father. Despite the title of the show, Ray underwent his fair share of family and marital issues, all of which were wrapped up in less than 30 minutes.

Rosenthal attempted previously to work on a spin-off series. However, despite initial enthusiasm from CBS, the spin0off did not come together and it did not see a pilot.

Indeed, getting a special greenlit is a game of ratings and money. In Rosenthal's words, "If they see money, they go for the money. If they see demographics that they want, they go for that."

The COVID-19 pandemic appeared to have complicated matters as well:

"Times are tough for them as well. And I'm not singling out any network. There are plenty of entities who have been involved with the show that could do a reunion show and a reunion special, certainly doesn't cost as much as producing a real episode of a show."

Like the Friends special, I'm sure my mother, and perhaps my late father, would be game for a Raymond reunion. After all, Everybody Loves Raymond appeared to have won the hearts of viewers enough to warrant one. I feel reunion specials have the benefit of reconnecting fans to characters they love, and the title of this show suggests there's love to be shared.