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Video: Fred Savage loves ‘The Grinder’ but does he run ‘Wonder Years’ on a loop at home?

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Fred Savage jokingly talks about subjecting his kids to looping episodes of “The Wonder Years.”

In Fox’s first-year comedy “The Grinder,” Fred Savage plays Stewart, a nice-guy lawyer dealing with the reality that his famous actor brother, Dean (Rob Lowe), now thinks he’s an attorney because he played one on TV.

“The Grinder” often opens with the family sitting around watching episodes of Dean’s old television show, an absurd (and very funny) comic premise that likely wouldn’t be replicated in real life. We mean, it’s not like Savage gathers his wife and three children nightly to watch “The Wonder Years,” right? Right?

PODCAST: Listen to our full interview with Fred Savage

“Almost nightly,” Savage joked. “The thing is, we don’t have to sit down and watch it. It’s just on a loop on all the screens all the time at the house. So we don’t sit down and watch it so much as we just live ... amidst it.”

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Actually, when the kids get the treat of sleeping over at Savage’s mom’s house, that’s when episodes of “The Wonder Years” are screened and the kiddos come home full of questions for Dad.

“My mom is educating them in that part,” Savage said.

We imagine that the family is likely enjoying “The Grinder” too, which has Savage returning to acting after fashioning a successful career directing television comedies such as “Modern Family,” “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” and “2 Broke Girls.”

The move back in front of the camera was triggered, Savage told us in a video interview at the Los Angeles Times, to avoid potential awkwardness with “Grinder” producer Nicholas Stoller. Their daughters go to the same school and though Savage was initially more interested in directing the show than acting in it, he took the meeting basically because his wife told him it would be weird for all involved if he passed.

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And speaking of his wife, Jennifer, Savage cleared up the rumor that they were childhood sweethearts. They were friends, growing up together in Glencoe, Ill., but nothing more. Because if it couldn’t work out for Kevin and Winnie on “The Wonder Years,” how could it for anyone?

The old series, he said, wasn’t “denying the world something that I myself enjoyed.”

To hear more about what Savage had to say about his work on “The Grinder,” including bonding with co-star Lowe, watch the full interview here.

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Fred Savage, who plays Stewart Sanderson on “The Grinder," stopped by The Times to discuss his character, the show and, of course, “The Wonder Years.”

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Twitter: @glennwhipp

glenn.whipp@latimes.com

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