I checked out this show when it first aired last August but couldn’t get into it. It was too predictable for me and couldn’t compare to the comedies on the broadcast networks. But my friend told me she was really liking it so I figured I would give it a second try and I have come to reconsider.
It is cute and funny in a throwback to old shows like Full House and Step by Step sort of way (delivery, jokes, and lessons included). But, I feel like it could be stronger.
It has a really interesting concept–two kids are basically abandoned by their parents after the father is caught pulling a Ponzi scheme (the father is on the run from the police and the mother was caught and put in jail) and have to be taken in by their once-partying aunt, Melissa, who has cleaned up her act and become a public figure. Also caught in the Ponzi scheme is Joey Longo, who becomes Melissa Burke’s nanny after he can’t get another job. And given the way comedies have been done lately (specifically, with more content and even addressing serious things) this could be a really intelligent comedy. Unfortunately, this unique idea is mostly ignored. These major issues could be addressed more. The only episode that really deals with it is when Rider is giving away his things to a kid in his school whose family was hurt by his dad. But there is so much more there.
So, I would ask for a more direct address of the issues at hand (what Mel has given up to take in her niece and nephew, the kids struggling with both what their parents did to others and the fact that they have been abandoned, more about what Joe’s life was like before and what he lost in the scheme besides a crappy ex…) and not just this general skating over the issues for the sake of over-light comedy. I’m also not sure I buy Mel as a former partier, she doesn’t seem cool enough to have been as rebellious as she is supposed to be. Maybe some ridiculous flashbacks?
Basically I want a better mix of serious and funny to make it more intelligent. Also, Melissa Joan Hart needs to be better dressed. Her clothes are so unflattering.