I am brutal on sitcoms, very few in my mind are worth watching. And is there anything attractive about 9JKL?
Let’s see…parents live in 9J. Newly divorced actor son is “temporarily” living in 9K. And a married surgeon son with Asian pediatrician wife and new baby are living in 9L while a duplex is being renovated. All of which you learn in the first 3 minutes of the show’s exposition dump. You meet THE ENTIRE MAIN CAST in his one bedroom apartment while he is still in bed.
Actor Josh is played by actor Mark Feuerstein, aka show creator, and he is apparently drawing from his own life experience. I loved Mark back in 2002-2004 in a show called Good Morning Miami about a guy who becomes producer for a show called GMM. Lovable, boy next door, very clean cut, the show had little to offer but I still hung around for 40 episodes before it was cancelled. He then moved on to – dun dun dun – Royal Pains playing another relatively clean cut doctor living in Miami Beach (I think), and treating wealthy elite tourists in the area. You know as soon as you see him, there’s going to be sunshine in the episode. And he’s okay here.
Linda Lavin plays his mom, and like most sitcom parents, the character is one-dimensional and over the top needy. She has comic pedigree, but I haven’t seen in her almost anything I liked except the original Alice (1976-85), but at least she has some really good lines in this one. Throw in Elliott Gould as his dad. Gould was fine in Friends, Ocean’s Thirteen, Eleven, etc, but not a draw for me.
For supporting cast, there’s Matt Murray (Rookie Blue) as a doorman, not bad. The sister is played by Liza Lapira (NCIS, Dollhouse), but seems way too stereotyped here to tell if she has anything to offer. David Walton (New Girl) plays the brother and is beyond annoying. Sally Pressman (Army Wives) plays a potential love interest, but hard to tell if she’ll show up again. At least she has presence.
Which leaves only one other character. Albert Tsai (Dr. Ken, Fresh off the Boat) plays a wise-cracking pre-teen, and he has some GREAT lines. Unfortunately, they are poorly delivered, and off-key. It’s like they only had time for a single take. Hard to believe they didn’t recast him or reshoot the scenes. He even stumbles over one of his lines. But he has pedigree, so he will likely find his footing, but likely to be limited to single line exchanges and zingers.
I gave it a shot, but I’m sticking with my original prediction:
CBS: 9JKL – I love the main star, and everyone wants their family sitcom to work, but not this one about moving to New York and living between parents and siblings – CANCELLED;