In 1990, the world was introduced to "Wings," a sitcom that predominately took place within a small airport in Nantucket, Massachusetts. Following the lives of the employees that worked there, the series dealt with love, heartbreak, and misunderstandings that led to hilarious situations.
Created by David Angell, Peter Casey, and David Lee, "Wings" ran for 172 episodes over eight seasons. The show takes place in the same universe as "Cheers" and even had some guest stars from its sister show, including John Ratzenberger as Cliff Clavin, George Wendt as Norm Peterson, Kirstie Alley as Rebecca Howe, Kelsey Grammer as Frasier Crane — who received an Emmy nomination — and Bebe Neuwirth as Lilith Sternin.
Though it did not gain the same recognition as "Cheers" or "Frasier," "Wings" was well received and jumpstarted the careers of its cast, most of whom appeared in highly popular shows and films. Let’s see where the cast is today since the series finale in 1997.
Tim Daly became a First Gentleman
Tim Daly portrayed Joe Hackett, a young pilot living his dream of running his own airline, Sandpiper. Joe is serious about his profession. Because of this, he can come off as stiff to his friends and family, but he also enjoys a good night out and joining in on his younger brother’s shenanigans. Daly appeared in all 172 episodes, though he was able to work on movies during the series’ run.
After "Wings" ended, Daly took on the mantle of Superman and voiced the iconic hero in several projects, including "Superman: the Animated Series" and, most recently, "Justice League: Doom." He also appeared in four episodes of HBO’s "The Sopranos" and played Dr. Pete Wilder in an episode of "Grey’s Anatomy," a part that gave him a starring role in the spin-off, "Private Practice."
From 2014 to 2019, Daly played Henry McCord opposite Téa Leoni in "Madam Secretary". The character eventually became a First Gentleman when Leoni’s Elizabeth McCord becomes the first female president in Season 6. Daly and Leoni started dating in 2014 and have been together ever since.
Steven Weber has helped create zombies
Steven Weber joined "Wings" as Brian Hackett, Joe’s younger brother and partner in Sandpiper Air. In contrast to Joe, Brian is much more laid back and would rather focus on having a good time than doing work, though he can be serious when the time calls for it.
After the show’s finale, Weber found success in various projects. He starred as Jack Torrance in a more faithful adaptation of Stephen King’s "The Shining" – King had a lot of input in the miniseries — which won him a Saturn Award. He had recurring roles in many shows, including Max Rager director Vaughn Du Clark in "iZombie," Douglas Hamilton in "NCIS: New Orleans," Gary Bolan in "13 Reasons Why," and most recently, Dr. Dean Archer in "Chicago Med." Like Tim Daly, Weber has appeared in a superhero cartoon by voicing various characters in the "Ultimate Spider-Man" from 2012 to 2017. Last year, he starred alongside Fran Drescher in "Indebted," but sadly, it was canceled after just one season.
Crystal Bernard is off the radar
Helen Chapel — played by Crystal Bernard — is a sassy aspiring cellist who runs the lunch counter at Tom Nevers Field Airport. Having been best friends with Joe and Brian since the two moved across the street, she is very outspoken and knows how to deal with the brothers. She and Joe have an on-again, off-again romance, which eventually leads to their nuptials in Season 6.
Before "Wings," Bernard had a steady career, appearing in "Happy Days" and starring in "It’s a Living." After her time as Helen ended, she did some theatre and even released albums and singles in the late ’90s and early 2000s. However, she has not done much acting since then; she has only made appearances in a few projects, including Hallmark Christmas movies and an episode of "According to Jim." It appears that Bernard has retired from show business. According to IMBD, her last role was in 2008, and she has been keeping a low profile since that time.
Thomas Haden Church became a supervillan
Thomas Haden Church came into the limelight with his part as Lowell Mather, a simple but kindhearted mechanic whose skills have kept the planes in the air. Despite Lowell’s questionable hobbies — like shooting rats in a dump — he contributes much to his friends’ lives. When Church left in Season 6, Lowell was written out of the show by joining the Witness Protection Program.
After leaving "Wings," Church starred in his own series, "Ned and Stacey," alongside Debra Messing. Though his sitcom only lasted for two seasons, Church has found much success in the film department. He has portrayed Lyle Van de Groot in "George of the Jungle," the Verminator in "Over the Hedge," and Jack Cole in "Sideways," a role which earned him an Academy Award nomination in 2004. Like Tim Daly and Steven Weber, he has stepped into the comic world, but in a live-action adaptation as the Sandman, one of three villains who fights against Toby Maguire in "Spider-Man 3." Church even voiced the character in the movie’s video game.
David Schramm is no longer with us
Viewers should remember David Schramm as Roy Biggins, the portly and bigoted owner of Aeromass, the rival airline to Joe’s Sandpiper Air. Throughout the series, Roy does his hardest to buy out Joe, all the while pulling scams left and right and managing to insult all of his co-workers.
Following "Wings," Schramm opted to return to theatre instead of doing further television work. In fact, his only television credit after "Wings" was voicing Bellerophon in an episode of Disney’s animated "Hercules" series in 1998. He appeared in a number of theatrical productions, including "The Beard of Avon," "Candida," "Waiting for Godot," "The Seafarer," "Twelve Angry Men," "The Merry Wives of Windsor," and much more. His final performance credit was Harrison Marlowe in "Enter Laughing the Musical" with the York Theatre Company in 2019.
Unfortunately, Schramm died last March after suffering a heart attack. His "Wings" co-stars paid tribute to their friend. Tim Daly knew "Schrammy," as he lovingly called him, as "a funny, reliable, charming comic actor" (via USA Today).
Rebecca Shull is not slowing down
Fay Cochran, played by Rebecca Schull, is the warm but sometimes frightening woman who announces flights, sells tickets, and often tells stories about her late husbands, all of which are named George. Fay used to be a stewardess, but was forced to retire. During her last flight, she met Joe, who was on his way to Hawaii. They quickly became friends, and it was with her help that Joe was able to create Sandpiper Air.
After the end of "Wings," Schull continued to act. She appeared in several projects such as "Analyze This" and "Analyze That" alongside Billy Crystal and Robert De Niro, episodes of "Frasier," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," and "Damages." Schull also had a recurring role in "Suits" from 2011 to 2013 as Edith Ross, the grandmother of Patrick J. Adams’ character. Her most recent role was Claire in "The Last," a movie which follows a Jewish family through four generations.
Tony Shalhoub is marvelous
Having appeared in various shows and TV films, Tony Shalhoub’s big break came when he joined "Wings." He first guest-starred in a Season 2 episode as an Italian waiter named Antonio Scarpacci. His role was expanded, and Antonio became a cab driver who frequented Tom Nevers Field. Antonio is known for being unlucky in the romance department and for his deep hatred for Roy, which seems to surpass all the other characters’ feelings toward Roy.
Since "Wings" concluded, Shalhoub has become a mainstay on television. He is probably best known for his work in "Monk," in which he plays the titular character. For his performance as the obsessive-compulsive detective, Shalhoub was nominated for 8 Emmy awards, winning three.
Shalhoub currently stars as Abe Weissman, the father of Midge Maisel, in the acclaimed Amazon Prime series, "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel." This role earned him a fourth Emmy in 2019.
Amy Yasbeck has spoken against heart disease
Amy Yasbeck — known to many fans as Peggy Brandt in "The Mask" — joined "Wings" in Season 6 as Helen’s older sister, Casey. She struggles with her life on Nantucket, having once lived on Nob Hill with her wealthy husband, and mourns the loss of the finer things in life.
Yasbeck stayed on "Wings" until the finale and went on to other roles. She tried to bring life to another sitcom called "Alright Already" in 1997, but unfortunately, the show never made it past its first season. Instead, she appeared in TV movies and shows, but she didn’t land any long-running roles. According to IMBD, her last credit was in 2016 when she played Claudia in an episode of "Pretty Little Liars."
The biggest tragedy of Yasbeck’s life, however, was the death of her husband, John Ritter, who suffered from a congenital heart defect in 2003. Yasbeck filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the hospital that treated him, but all involved were cleared of wrongdoing. Yasbeck has been vocal about heart disease and her husband’s death, as seen in her interview on Larry King Live in 2008.
Farrah Forke tried other sitcoms
Farrah Forke made her "Wings" debut as Alex Lambert, the tough yet feminine helicopter pilot who instantly wins Joe’s and Brian’s hearts. Though the brothers fight for her attention, Alex ends up choosing Brian, and the two have a loving and serious relationship. After Alex breaks up with Brian, Forke left the show, though her character is often mentioned.
Before and after her departure, Forke joined "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" as district attorney Mayson Drake. Unlike on "Wings," she did not stay on long and was only in four episodes before her character was killed off. In addition to appearances in shows and films — including Thomas Haden Church’s "Ned and Stacey" — Forke appeared in two short-lived sitcoms, "Dweebs" and "Mr. Rhodes." She has also voiced Big Barda, a member of the Justice League, in both "Batman Beyond" and "Justice League: Unlimited" in 2000 and 2005, respectively.