Yet another great closure to explaining why none of the characters return next season. Fogerty and Joe leave for romantic obligations. But what about poor Howard?
After being absent from the past 7 episodes, George Clooney(Joe) finally returns with no explanation to where he has been (No wonder it takes so long for them to complete Maggie's loft if the workers are allowed to just take long periods of time off with no explanation). In fact, there is a possibility that this was supposed to be episode 5, which nicely explain why Joe has been gone all those other 7 episodes. For some reason, ABC decided to air this as the season finale.
This is Julia Duffy's last appearance as Maggie. She, along with many others, were unhappy with the development of the show and quit at the end of the season. Julia Duffy went on to play Allison Sugarbaker (cousin of Suzanne Sugarbaker) on the series "Designing Women." Julia replaced Delta Burke, whom was fired from the series. But after one season, Julia was written out of the series after fan's claiming that they couldn't accept her as Burke's replacement.