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Series debut: Romantically Challenged, Monday, April 19

In television on 04/19/2010 at 7:08 am

Series name
Romantically Challenged

Debuts
Monday, April 19 at 9:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Regularly airs
Mondays at 9:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Premise
We’re all hopeless at this game called love.

Primary cast and crew
Alyssa Milano (Who’s the Boss, Charmed) is Rebecca Thomas, a mom and lawyer who is newly divorced and dating.
Kyle Bornheimer (Worst Week) is Perry Gill, very successful financial planner. Love life? Not so much. Rebecca’s best friend since childhood.
Josh Lawson (Aussie improv show called Thank God You’re Here) is Shawn Goldwater, Perry’s roommate, an aspiring novelist and one-night-stand artist.
Kelly Stables (Two and a Half Men, Greek) is Lisa Thomas, sister to Rebecca. Also kindergarten teacher by day, sex athlete by night.
Ricky Blitt (Family Guy) and James Burrows (you name a sitcom) are creator/exec producers.

But what do I know anyway? After NOT having seen the pilot …
The lightness of the comedy is not well served by the frequency of the promos: There will not be one joke, I’ll wager, in the pilot we’re not already a little tired of. It’ll take three or four episodes, as usual, to get a fair assessment, but in its favour is Burrows’ involvement as creator and pilot director, Bornheim reprising his schlub role from Worst Week (hated the show, loved him), Stables deranged cuteness (she’s the receptionist girlfriend on Two and a Half Men), plus Milan herself. Its timeslot is not bad, snugged in between Dancing with the Stars and Castle. Other reviews, so far, are a little harsh, some expressing outrage that this show is not Friends and others citing a pilot that doesn’t take enough time to establish characters.

Other reviews

Alyssa Milano stars in Romantically Challenged. Photo by Mario Anzuoni, Reuters

Reuters’ critic Barry Garron doesn’t give it a chance in hell, declaring, “the premiere is much better than anyone has a right to expect it to be.”

The Washington Post is nearly having a stroke it hates this show so much.

The New York Times at least makes a case without resorting to outrage, but still gives a negative review.

Official website
Basic, but with good links to share links to the ABC page on Facebook, Twitter and MySpace. Puzzlingly, it doesn’t have links to the show’s dynamic Twitter account.

Twitter
@RomChallenged is alive with energy and has been for several months. Cast (including Milano, though she has other equally active Twitter accounts) and execs reply to fan queries and, okay sure, promote the hell out of the coming debut, but most other show sites have ONLY promo.

Facebook
Couldn’t find anything other than a (thank you) clearly labelled fan page called Romantically Challenged.

— Denise Duguay

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