‘Last Man Standing’: Did You Catch This Sly Nod to ‘Home Improvement’ in Episode with Richard Karn?

by Thad Mitchell
(Photo by Carin Baer/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images) RICHARD KARN, TIM ALLEN

Ever popular sitcom “Last Man Standing” is in the middle of its last season with the finale quickly approaching.

Producers of the show are pulling out the stops for the ninth and final season, including adding some special guests. One of these guests is former “Home Improvement” star, Richard Karn. On “Home Improvement,” Karn plays Al Borland, the sidekick to Tim Allen’s character Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor. Together, Taylor and Borland host the fictional do-it-yourself show “Tool Time.”

Karn and Allen have a long history together so it’s a natural fit that the former would appear on “Last Man Standing.” He did just that in a recent episode and show writers snuck in a sly nod to the duo’s former show that may have gone unnoticed to some.

Karn plays Bill McKendree on the show, a friend of Allen’s character Mike Baxter. Bill tells Mike to “say ‘hi’ to your wife and three sons.” Mike replies, “Bill, I have three daughters.” Bill responds “Really? God, I seem to remember it was three boys.”

It’s a clever nod to “Home Improvement,” in which Allen’s character has three sons instead of three daughters as in “Last Man Standing.” It is likely that not all viewers got the reference but those who did appreciate the nod to one of the most popular sitcoms of all time.

‘Last Man Standing’ Cruising Through Final Season

“Last Man Standing” still has several episodes left before the show’s finale, which is expected to end around the beginning of May. The show can attribute its success to Allen’s quick wit, sharp tongue, and bountiful sense of humor. The show centers around Baxter as he navigates through life while trying to keep his family happy. With his wife and three daughters under the roof, the women in his life provide him with plenty of love and obstacles to work through.

Allen and Karn form one of the funniest duos to ever appear on a television sitcom. Their comedic chemistry is something to behold and “Last Man Standing” proves they have lost their touch. The two funnymen are also co-hosting “Assembly Required,” a do-it-yourself reality competition airing on the History Channel. The show pits amateur builders in a competition to rejuvenate older items in their garages. The show is currently airing on Tuesdays on the History Channel.