Oh Grow Up Review

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TV Guide September 11-17, 1999

Fall TV Preview

STARS Rena Sofer, John Ducey, Niesha Trout, David Alan Basche, Stephen Dunham PREMISE Three buddies share a Brooklyn, New York, brownstone, each facing an awkward turning point. Hunter (Dunham) is a carefree womanizer who has just discovered he has an 18-year-old daughter (Trout). Norris (Basche) is a misanthropic artist who has to choose between painting and earning a living. Ford (Ducey) recently announced that he is gay, much to his wife's (Sofer) surprise and chagrin. THEY SAY Exec producer Alan Ball, a playwright and screenwriter, loosely based this ensemble comedy on a chaotic period of his life when he lived with six other men. He considers his characters "a surrogate family. I want it to be a show about going through major transitions in life." Ball previously worked on two star vehicles (Grace Under Fire, Cybill) "and did not want to do that again... If you have five characters, it gives you so much more potential." WE SAY When one of the characters is a dog named Mom who barks with subtitles ("Get a room!"), you know better than to expect subtlety. Slick yet almost suffocatingly sarcastic, the show can make you laugh and cringe at the same time. Yet there are many genuinely funny lines, delivered by an extremely attractive cast -- the best known being ex-Melrose Place loony Sofer, who is much more amusing here.

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