Moonlighting was Bruce Willis’s big break. He’d done a Miami Vice and Twilight Zone right before but he didn’t totally leave TV behind when movies beckoned. Willis appeared in four TV series after the Die Hard franchise began and Moonlighting ended.
Showbiz Cheat Sheet is here to help you find Willis’s TV cameos. They’re all streaming, most of them on Peacock. Since Willis is no longer making movies after his Frontotemporal Dementia diagnosis, here are four more TV appearances to celebrate along with all his movies.
‘Friends’ had the most substantial Bruce Willis role
Willis appeared in three episodes of the hit sitcom Friends in 2000. He played Paul Stevens, the father of Ross (David Schwimmer)’s girlfriend, Elizabeth (Alexandra Holden). He did not approve of Ross, but he ended up dating Rachel (Jennifer Aniston).
Willis got to play his endearingly intimidating dad persona, and display his comedic chops when Ross catches him psyching himself up for love. Ultimately, Paul got too vulnerable for Rachel, crying uncontrollably in another comedic scene. Friends is now streaming on Peacock.
Bruce Willis played himself on ‘Mad About You’
A 1997 episode of Mad About You had Paul (Paul Reiser) and Jamie (Helen Hunt) welcome their daughter Mabel. It was a two-parter, but the appearance of Bruce Willis, playing himself, caused comedic hijinks. You can also find this and other Mad About You episodes on Peacock.
Willis was in the same hospital due to an injury he incurred on a Die Hard sequel called Just Die Already. Perhaps Mad About You thought that was the logical follow-up to Die Hard with a Vengeance. Little did they know the sequels would adopt increasingly complicated titles like Live Free or Die Hard and A Good Day to Die Hard. Willis escaped his room and Paul encountered him in the halls. Willis sent up his own action hero image with good-natured ribbing.
‘The Orville’ only used his voice
In the season 2 episode “Deflectors,” Kelly (Adrienne Palicki) breaks up with her boyfriend. Her ex keeps sending her gifts to win her back. It doesn’t work, but one of those gifts is a sentient flower with the voice of Willis. The Orville streams on both Disney+ and Hulu.
Considering Willis did voiceover for the Look Who’s Talking movies, Beavis and Butt-Head Do America, Over the Hedge, and his Bruno the Kid cartoon, a talking flower was right in his wheelhouse.
Bruce Willis helped Ashton Kutcher leave ‘That ‘70s Show’
In the final season of That ‘70s Show, Eric Foreman (Topher Grace) was already in Africa teaching because Grace had left the show. Ashton Kutcher also departed after a few episodes, and Willis provided the vehicle for that.
In Kutcher’s final episode until the series finale, Kelso visited the Playboy Club in Chicago where his daughter lived with her mother. Vic (Willis) was the head of security and offered Kelso a job at the club. It’s only one scene, but Willis makes the most of it with a mustache, sideburns and lifting up his toupee.
In the revival That ‘90s Show, Kelso has a son with Jackie (Mila Kunis), Jay (Mace Coronel). Although ‘90s streams on Netflix, That ‘70s Show streams on Peacock.