Thursday, May 23, 2013

NBC Midseason Pilot Review: Save Me - Premieres May 23; TV One Orders 4th Season of Sitcom Love That Girl!

Save Me

Save Me - Thursdays at 8:00PM and 8:30PM ET/PT on NBC
Premieres Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 8:00PM ET/PT


by Skees

Life isn't so pleasant for Beth Harper (Anne Heche) in NBC's latest sitcom, Save Me. The housewife is in a bit of a funk in life, and her husband Tom (Michael Landes) is on the verge of divorcing her to be with his mistress. Fortunately for Beth, she gets lucky (sort of...) when she chokes on a sandwich late at night, and becomes something a bit "divine."

Cast Details:
Anne Heche as Beth Harper
Michael Landes as Tom Harper
Alexandra Breckenridge as Carly Brugano
Heather Burns as Jenna Derring
Madison Davenport as Emily Harper

Anne Heche (Beth Harper) is a well known actress who started her TV career in 1987 in the NBC soap opera Another World, for which she won a Daytime Emmy Award in 1991. She later went on to film roles, including I Know What You Did Last Summer, Donnie Brasco, and Cedar Rapids. More recently, she has had TV roles in the series Men in Trees and Hung.

Michael Landes (Tom Harper) is best known for his role as Jimmy Olsen in the first season of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (he was replaced by Justin Whalen beginning in the second season). He has had small roles in series including thirtysomething, The Wonder Years, The Torkelsons, Step by Step, and more.

Alexandra Breckenridge (Carly Brugano) began acting at the age of 15, and is also a photographer and voice artist. She has appeared in series such as Freaks and Geeks and Undeclared, but her biggest roles have been those of Willa McPherson on Dirt and many various roles on episodes of Family Guy.

Heather Burns (Jenna Derring) has appeared in films such as Miss Congeniality and Two Weeks Notice, but has most recently had a starring role in the HBO series Bored to Death. She is married to actor Ajay Naidu.

Madison Davenport (Emily Harper) made her television debut in 2005 in the series Numb3rs. She has since had guest roles in other crime dramas such as CSI, CSI: NY, Bones, and most recently had a recurring role in the Showtime series Shameless.


Pilot Plot:

"Pilot" (airs Thursday, May 23 at 8:00 PM ET/PT)

In the pilot episode, we are introduced to Beth Harper, a somewhat self-centered housewife who seems to be on the verge of killing her cheating husband Tom after a life full of disappointments. But not quite. She instead heads into the kitchen to take a bite out of a sandwich, which turns into something much more divine after she chokes on that sandwich. Suddenly, she is the wife who wants to love her husband and get rid of that woman he has been having an affair with. She is the mother who cares about her daughter and her relationship with the "boy next door." She is the neighbor who wants to be among the rest of the "desperate housewives" on the block. It is a very ambitious goal, and now that she has the ability to read minds and get in touch with the people around her (and actually care), her work may just be cut out for her.

Analysis:

I'm never a big fan of pilot episodes, and I'm never really wowed by them. However, this pilot episode was a bit different. Not only are we introduced to the cast almost instantly (without anything too long and drawn out), but we also get to see a bit of an actual plot. But what worries me is that they may have created a bit of a situation that tells a story in one episode that could have been split over several episodes (or even an entire series). There was quite a bit of conflict with those around Beth at the beginning of the episode, and by the end of the episode, that conflict all seemed to be resolved.

Still, despite all of that initial conflict being solved in the pilot, what I saw what would have been one of the most promising series of the season... except NBC, for some reason, didn't have enough faith to air it during the regular season and is instead burning it off in the summer. The pilot was a pretty good episode, and the ending of the episode (which I won't spoil) was a bit "shocking" and something that I think viewers almost wanted to see. There are far too many "relationship sitcoms" out there these days, and it is a bit refreshing to see one where it isn't about "hooking up" with somebody, but instead about repairing what somebody already has.

The comedy in the pilot episode isn't necessarily the laugh out loud style of comedy (few sitcoms are anymore), but it is a bit more of a dark comedy style, something like you'd expect on a premium cable series. Fortunately, I (and many others out there) like this style of comedy and that will make the show enjoyable for us... but that could present a problem since the show is airing on NBC, where viewers are accustomed to a more sanitized comedy with laugh out loud moments.


Conclusion:

Can this show be "saved?" I doubt it. When a series debuts after the end of the official TV season, it is pretty much an indication that the network has given up on the series before they even decided to give it a chance. Honestly, I don't understand why they chose to burn this series off. It seems that a lot of the critics have come to the same solution: this series would give Anne Heche an Emmy Award... if the series on Showtime. It is a bit of a fish out of water on NBC, but at the very least, I hope that they give us the opportunity to see all of the episodes that have been produced. I do have hopes that the series will continue with the positive momentum that the first episode had, and we'll be able to judge for ourselves as the second episode (which we were not able to review) will air immediately following the pilot. All in all, the pilot suggests something very promising... except it is on the wrong network at the wrong time.

Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 4/5
Funniness: 2/5
Overall: 3/5

Discuss the show after you watch it on Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 8:00PM ET/PT on our message board.

Related Links:

  • NBC.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • Save Me Photo Gallery

    Preview:





  • Love That Girl

    TV One has ordered a new season for an original sitcom! The laughs keep coming to TV One with the return of Love That Girl!, a half-hour comedy series chronicling the life and times of Imunique Jefferson and Delroy Jones, and the crazy, but loving bond that makes them not just colleagues, but family. Production is scheduled to begin May 2013 with an anticipated premiere date in fall 2013. Created by Bentley Kyle Evans (Martin, The Jamie Foxx Show), the fourth season features an all-star cast including Phil Morris (Hot in Cleveland), Bresha Webb (Weeds), Alphonso McAuley (Breaking In), Peter Oldring (Glenn Martin DDS), Mark Adair-Rios (Off The Map), and Huggy Low Down (Tom Joyner Morning Show).

    New to the series, is seasoned sitcom star Reagan Gomez (The Cleveland Show, The Parent'Hood) as Del Jones Realty's newest employee and Delroy's niece, Jasmine Russell. Not afraid to use nepotism cards when it suits her, Jasmine discovers making it in LA is tougher than she imagined. Stay with us for continued updates including when the actual season premiere date and time will be.


    Sitcoms Airing Tonight

    Friday, October 22

    Sydney to the Max - "Honey, You Shrunk the Fit" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
    Sydney is asked to represent a popular clothing line on social media but struggles with its "one size fits all" mold; in the '90s, Max enlists Leo to help him get buff to impress Alisha.

    Gabby Duran & the Unsittables - "Adventures in Alien House-Sitting" (Disney Channel, 8:30PM ET/PT)
    Gabby gets FOMO while babysitting an alien smart home, but when she uses the cool alien tech to lure a party to the house, the situation goes dangerously interstellar.

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 18)

    Friday, October 22

    • Martin Short (Only Murders in the Building/Mulaney/The Martin Short Show) - Watch Martin on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Jerry Seinfeld (Seinfeld) - Jerry appears on a repeat of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
    • Jason Sudeikis (Ted Lasso/Son of Zorn/The Cleveland Show) and Brendan Hunt (Ted Lasso) - Jason, Brendan and Joe Kelly are guests on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
    • Susie Essman (Curb Your Enthusiasm/Broad City/Baby Boom) - Susie chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
    • Montana Jordan (Young Sheldon) - Montana appears on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
    • Ricky Gervais (After Life/The Office) - Ricky talks about his new podcast, Absolutely Mental, on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
    • Tiffany Haddish (The Last O.G./The Carmichael Show) - Tiffany guest hosts The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
    • Leah Remini (Kevin Can Wait/The Exes/Family Tools/The King of Queens/Fired Up) - Leah guest hosts The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
    • Abigail Breslin (Scream Queens) - Abigail appears on The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
    • Quinta Brunson (Abbott Elementary) - Quinta is a guest on Tamron Hall, so check your local listings.
    • Laura Benanti (Younger/The Detour/Go On) - Laura will be on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
    • Issa Rae (Insecure) - Issa appears on CBS This Morning sometime between 7-9am.
    • Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm/Son of Zorn/Suburgatory) - Cheryl is a guest on Access Daily, so check your local listings.


    New on DVD/Blu-ray (June-October)

    Head of the Class - The Complete Third Season Family Ties - The Complete Series (2021 Release) Hot in Cleveland - The Complete Series (2021 Release) Young Sheldon - The Complete Fourth Season Maude - The Complete Series (2021 Release)

    06/08 - The Critic - The Complete Series
    06/08 - Fuller House - The Fifth and Final Season
    06/08 - Fuller House - The Complete Series
    06/08 - Our Cartoon President - Season 3
    06/15 - The Office - Season 1 (Blu-ray) / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9
    06/15 - Parks and Recreation - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
    07/07 - No Activity - Season 2
    07/13 - The Unicorn - Season 2
    07/20 - Head of the Class - The Complete Third Season
    07/27 - Family Ties - The Complete Series (2021 Release)
    07/27 - Hot in Cleveland - The Complete Series (2021 Release)
    07/27 - The Neighborhood - Season Three
    08/20 - The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet - Deluxe Edition (100 Episodes) (Time Life)
    08/20 - The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet - Standard Edition (50 Episodes) (Time Life)
    08/24 - The Jim Gaffigan Show - Season 2
    09/07 - Young Sheldon - The Complete Fourth Season (Blu-ray)
    10/19 - Maude - The Complete Series (2021 Release)
    More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


    Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

    10/22 - Fri-Yay: Are Ghosts and The Wonder Years the Saving Graces of Network Comedy?; Ghosts Receives Full Season Order
    10/21 - Butch Patrick Hosts Halloween Monster Bash on Classic Reruns TV; Harlem Starring Meagan Good Premieres Dec. 3
    10/20 - Fox Announces Special Post NFL January Premieres; TBS Comedy Wipeout Returns in January for Season 2
    10/19 - One Final Family Reunion on Netflix; Apple TV+ Announces Premiere Date for Harriet the Spy
    10/18 - GAC Family Acquires Classic Sony Sitcoms; Remembering Betty Lynn from The Andy Griffith Show
    10/17 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of October 18, 2021)
    10/16 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Could a Looming Strike Shut Down TV Production?; GAC Family Acquires Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, Silver Spoons, and More
    10/15 - Dickinson Final Season Date Announced; Superstar: Robin Williams to Air Next Week (Oct. 20)
    10/14 - Antenna TV's Bewitched 24-Hour Halloween Marathon; Rewind TV's Sabrina Witch-O-Ween Marathon
    10/13 - Head of the Class Reboot Premieres Nov. 4, Guest Stars Robin Givens; The Bear Coming to FX
    10/12 - CBS Picks Up First 2 New Series for Full Seasons; On My Block Spinoff Series Cast Set
    10/11 - Netflix Orders That '90s Show Featuring Red and Kitty; Nash Bridges Movie Premieres Nov. 27 on USA Network
    10/10 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of October 11, 2021)
    10/09 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Netflix Orders That '70s Show Spinoff Featuring Debra Jo Rupp and Kurtwood Smith; Nash Bridges Revival Movie Premiere Date Set
    10/08 - Fri-Yay: CBS’s Ghosts Is the Most Interesting New Comedy of the Year; Insecure to Hold Festival for Final Season
    10/07 - Mini Desperate Housewives Reunion on Hallmark Christmas Movie; The Kids Tonight Show Premieres Oct. 14
    10/06 - And Just Like That... We Get a Premiere Date; The CW Holiday Specials Schedule
    10/05 - New Peanuts Holiday Special on Apple TV+, PBS to Air Classic Holiday Specials; COZI TV Acquires Heartland
    10/04 - Disney Channel Orders Season 5 of Raven's Home; Freeform Picks Up Phoebe Robinson Comedy
    10/03 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of October 4, 2021)
    10/02 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Curb Your Enthusiasm Season 11 Premiere Date Set; Lori Loughlin Returns to TV Role
    10/01 - Fri-Yay: The Fall 2021 Sitcom Line-up Is Pretty Bare; Bounce Renews Johnson for Season 2
    09/30 - It's a Wonderful Lifetime Expands with 35 New Movies; Hulu & Lifetime Acquire Castle
    09/29 - Curb Your Enthusiasm Returns Yet Again; Archer Returning for Lucky Season 13 on FXX
    09/28 - Nick at Nite Acquires Mike & Molly; NBC Orders Night Court to Series
    09/27 - MeTV Network Halloween Schedule; HBO Max Renews The Other Two for Third Season
    09/26 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of September 27, 2021)
    09/25 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Night Court Reboot Gets Series Order; Season Premiere Date Set for The Orville
    09/24 - Fri-Yay: Ted Lasso Wins Big at The Emmys; CBS Expands Ghosts Premiere to One-Hour; Remembering Willie Garson of Sex and the City, Director Jay Sandrich
    09/23 - TBS, TNT and truTV Launch Fall-O-Ween, a Programming Block of Halloween Classics; HBO Max Comedy from Mindy Kaling Debuts November 18
    09/22 - Paramount+ Renews Rugrats for 2nd Season; Eva Longoria Producing Disney Sci-Fi Comedy