Not ready to commit . . . a review of 'Unhitched'
Whether it's Cameron Diaz's hair gel in There's Something About Mary, Jason Alexander's tail in Shallow Hal or Jim Carrey getting beat up in Me, Myself & Irene, the Farrelly brothers aren't exactly known for their subtle or genteel sense of humor. They're all about bodily functions, bizarre body parts and uncomfortable sexual situations.
So it's no surprise that two minutes into their new FOX comedy Unhitched (which premieres this Sunday at 9:30 p.m. on FOX), star Craig Bierko is, um how shall I put this, violated by a monkey.
As the title suggests, the series follows four friends -- Jack "Gator" Gately (Craig Bierko), Kate (Rashida Jones), Freddy (Shaun Majumder), and Tommy (Johnny Sneed) -- who have recently split from their significant others. Comparisons to Seinfeld are not greatly exagerrated.
The absolute best part of the show is Jones as Kate. Jones did the nearly impossible last season -- she made viewers like the woman who came between Jim and Pam on The Office. The fact that I still hear from people who think that Jim actually belongs with Karen is a testament to Jones' innate likeability. She excels at playing the kind of character both men and women want to befriend and men want to date. So far Kate's dating situations and Jones' hilarious reaction to them is the reason to tune in.
In the two episodes available for review, there were definitely moments I laughed out loud. There just weren't enough of them. One of things I really like about the Farrelly brothers movies is that they infuse their characters with heart. They're not just on the screen to have moments of gross out humor. So far Unhitched seems to be missing this crucial piece. Right now it plays out like a live action version of a crude cartoon. That's not enough to sustain a series. Two and a half stars.
After you watch the show, let me know what you think.
Save 'Friday Night Lights'
As you've probably heard, NBC is looking for ways to bring Friday Night Lights back for a third season. The people over at Save Friday Night Lights (www.savefnl.com) are organizing a campaign to send footballs to NBC. Check out their campaign and keep your hearts full.
Where Have I Seen Them Before?
Barret Swatek is Brittany, the editor who stole Dylan's idea on quarterlife. She was Cheryl on 7th Heaven. David Walton is Danny. Walton was Liam on Cracking Up and Ricky on Heist.
Ron, Ashley and John were the first to recognize this week's most popular face. Yes that was Shawn Doyle was Kate's lawyer on Lost. He's Joey Henrickson on Big Love. Susan Gibney was the district attorney prosecuting Kate's case on Lost. We just saw her as Michael's mother, Jennifer, on Knight Rider. She was also Renee Walcott on Crossing Jordan.
Bruce Davison, who we also just saw on Knight Rider as Charles Graiman, was the psychiatrist Dr. Silverman on Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Among his many roles, Davison was Doug Hellman on Close to Home, Dr. Stegman on Kingdom Hospital, and Scott Wallace on The Practice.
DJ recognized a slew of familiar faces on Eli Stone. Chris Diamantopoulos was the man who had awoken from a coma to find his wife remarried to his best friend. He's Phil on the Lifetime series State of Mind, Rodney on The Starter Wife, and (fun fact) married to Becki Newton, Amanda on Ugly Betty, in real life.
James Avery was Mason Andrews, the lawyer accused of being a racist on Eli Stone. He's best known for playing Uncle Philip on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and more recently we've seen him as the medical examiner on The Closer. Jason George was Keith Bennett, the lawyer who Mason didn't hire. George was Jimmy on What About Brian, J.T. on Eve, Jackson on Platinum, and Status Quo on Off Centre. The good news is we'll be seeing a lot more of George on the show.
Nicholas Gonzalez was Scotty's friend on Brothers & Sisters. Gonzalez was D.J. on The O.C., Alex on Resurrection Blvd., and Conrado on American Family.
That's all for today. I'm back on Friday with quotes of the week and a review of Oprah's Big Give and thoughts on the new season of Dirt. Have a question? Seen a familiar face? Want to nominate a quote of the week? Write me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amy Amatangelo, TV Gal