Coach Christine NBC

Coach Shocker: NBC Revival Poised to Kill Off Shelley Fabares' Christine

It appears Hayden Fox’s wife will be warming the big bench in the sky when Coach returns to TV next season on NBC.

Barring an 11th-hour plot tweak, viewers will learn that the character of Christine, played by Shelley Fabares during the original sitcom’s nine-year run on ABC, passed away at some point during the intervening 18 years.

The new Coach series finds Craig T. Nelson’s Hayden being called out of retirement to serve as assistant coach to his and late wife Christine’s grown son, Tim, who is starting up a new team as the head coach at an Ivy League school in Pennsylvania.

Aside from Nelson, Bill Fagerbakke — AKA special teams coach Michael “Dauber” Dybinski — is the only other Coach vet currently attached to the new series.

Barry Kemp, who created Coach: Original Flavor, is writing and exec-producing the continuation.

NBC declined to comment for this story.

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  1. Mark says:

    Way to take a bad idea and make it horrible.

  2. soapie0 says:


  3. Rob says:

    Not a great start. Although I’m pretty sure I read that Shelley Fabares kinda lost her marbles a few years back.

  4. ToyCannon says:

    BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Fabares was the best part of “Coach”. The wedding scene where she fell from the stairs and swung from the chandelier is one of the funniest in sitcom history. I will not be watching if Christine is dead.

  5. aph1976 says:

    In way having Christine be dead could create more story possibilities because her death might have caused a rift between Coach and their son.So then the Coach coming to help his son could start to heal that rift

  6. Dmac says:

    So lets review no wife, no daughter, wouldn’t want any pesky women get in the way of the show.

  7. Vickie says:

    She, Shelley, Christine needs to be part of the show, is it that she didn’t want to do the show, or the writers? She is a big part of the show, bring her back. Is this a CBS show, if so I won’t watch it, they took off Stalker, and I said I won’t watch any new shows that they have, they stink.

  8. Drew says:

    What? No way. Just… No. If they can’t do it right, it shouldn’t be done.

    • Cassie says:

      Yes because there’s no way she could have had cancer or have been in a car accident or anything that would have taken a person’s life too early in this world.

      It’s also not saying that she couldn’t appear in dreams or newly created flashbacks. Just because someone is gone– especially your mom or your spouse — doesn’t mean you don’t think of them every day.

  9. Yolanda says:

    And I’m out. I love when they bring back shows from the past we loved but not when they bring them back and destroy everything we loved about them.

  10. Scott says:

    i wonder who will be playing Tim?

  11. Elizabeth says:

    She hasn’t acted onscreen since 1998. She has done some voice work, but even that was almost 10 years ago. Perhaps she considers herself retired or isn’t physically capable.

  12. bshaid says:

    I hope she comes back to haunt him…

  13. Marla says:

    Why would anyone want to see a revival of this show??? Befuddles the mind.

    • Jay Bee says:

      I’m a big fan of the original Coach television program. It is one of the reasons why I subscribe to Netflix just so that I can watch the original episodes. Had the producers tried a revival a few years later after the series ended, I believe it might have been successful. However, 18 years later is much too long for a revival. I will not be surprised if it lasts only one season.

  14. matty says:

    This is not that big a shock. I figured that they’d have to find a way to introduce dating stories for Hayden Fox, and i figured with Shelley all but retired at this point that Christine wouldn’t be a big part of the series.

  15. Lerbert says:

    Hard to square Coach without Christine and Shelly Fabares. Crusty widower? Or younger love interest? This probably should have been left on the shelf.

  16. Big Mike says:

    Well that escalated quickly.

  17. Maple Leaf Momma says:

    What is the matter with most of you ?? Shelley Fabares is obviously retired with a
    serious physical problem…Remember how she made you laugh…She won’t be on the
    new show…So-o-o…suck it up !!

  18. grandmal006 says:

    Must have Christine. She must be played by Shelly, no one else.

    • tvjunkie says:

      So are you going to grab your pitchfork, hunt her down and force her to do the show even if she doesn’t want to?

  19. SherryB says:

    Yet another “reboot” of a classic show that was really good back in its day…And expectations of yet another failure because writers/producers/and networks can’t seem to come up with any “new” ideas on their own..Ironside, Knight Rider, Bionic Woman, Charlie’s Angels..shall I continue…All reboots, all failed..Leave the classics alone and lets us keep good memories of decent television without the vulgar,offensive language, the half naked bodies and sex splashed into every episode.

  20. KC says:

    The whole idea of bringing back this show is a waste of the network’s air time. Totally ridiculous!

  21. Mary says:

    What is with all the remakes? Does nobody have an original ideal anymore. I am anxious to see if any of them do well. They were good shows back in the day, but not so sure how they will be received. The only show I would like to see remake is the Gilmore Girls.

  22. Ted says:

    OK everyone, calm down. They wanted Shelley to participate in some capacity, but her health problems prevent her from doing so.

    I would have just written them as divorced, since Hayden never proved himself to be a great husband to either of his wives. And that would have left the door open for a later appearance from Shelley. But I also understand the decision to kill off Christine, because she was so well liked that a divorce would make Hayden come off as unsympathetic.

  23. dman6015 says:

    From a Deadline.com article in June: “…while Shelley Fabares, who played Fox’s wife Christine, may not be able to be part of the new show because of health issues.”

  24. Lulu says:

    Aww. I hope Coach’s
    daughter comes into the picture, she was a big part of that show.

  25. Because it words so well when Edith Bunker was killed off…

  26. TVRocks says:

    Why is it that they need to resurrect Coach? Are there no new ideas out there!

  27. iceturkee says:

    i am so not watching this. i have loved shelley since donna reed.

  28. connie deardorff says:

    The show just won’t be the same with out Christine and Luther. It reminds me of the I love Lucy show when she came back with the Lucy show and just had Vivian Vance. It just wasn’t that good. When a show goes out and was great, don’t try to come back again without the original cast

  29. connie deardorff says:

    The show just won’t be the same with out Christine and Luther. It reminds me of the I love Lucy show when she came back with the Lucy show and just had Vivian Vance. It just wasn’t that good. When a show goes out and was great, don’t try to come back again without the original cast. It just doesn’t work and it’s not funny anymore.

  30. michael says:

    No Shelley, no thank you!

  31. Try Pod says:

    I just read the series has been cancelled, with no reason given

  32. Cassie says:

    Without Shelly it WILL SUCK