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

    Saturday, July 4

    none scheduled

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of June 29)

    Friday, July 3

    • Kevin Hart (The Big House/Undeclared) - Watch Kevin on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 12:35am on ABC.
    • Tina Fey (30 Rock) - Tina appears on a repeat of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
    • Laura Dern (Enlightened) - Laura is a guest on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Mark Duplass (Togetherness/The Mindy Project/The League) - Mark appears on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Melissa McCarthy (Mike & Molly/Samantha Who?) - Melissa guest hosts a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Brett Gelman (Camping/Fleabag/Love/Married/Go On) - Brett appears on a repeat of A Little Late with Lilly Singh at 1:35am on NBC.
    • Tika Sumpter (mixed-ish/The Game) - Tika talks about the season finale of mixed-ish and her latest project helping new moms on a repeat of Tamron Hall, so check your local listings.
    • Peter Gallagher (Grace and Frankie/The Secret Lives of Men) - Peter talks about Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist and Grace and Frankie on a repeat of Tamron Hall, so check your local listings.


    New on DVD/Blu-ray (April/May/June/July)

    Step by Step - The Complete Seventh and Final Season The Good Place - The Final (Fourth) Season Head of the Class - The Complete First Season Modern Family - The Eleventh and Final Season Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Seven

    04/07 - Cheers - The Complete Series (2020 Release)
    04/14 - Police Squad! - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
    04/14 - The Righteous Gemstones - The Complete First Season
    04/21 - Step by Step - The Complete Seventh and Final Season (WBShop.com)
    05/05 - Kidding - Season 2
    05/19 - The Good Place - The Final (Fourth) Season
    05/19 - The Good Place - The Complete Series - Collector's Edition (Blu-ray)
    05/26 - Silicon Valley - The Complete Sixth and Final Season
    05/26 - Silicon Valley - The Complete Series
    06/02 - Work in Progress - Season 1
    06/09 - Head of the Class - The Complete First Season (WBShop.com)
    06/09 - How to Be a Gentleman - The Complete Series
    06/09 - Letterkenny - Seasons 3 & 4
    06/09 - Modern Family - The Eleventh and Final Season
    06/09 - No Activity - Season 1
    06/09 - Superior Donuts - Season Two
    06/23 - Bob's Burgers - The Complete 10th Season
    06/23 - Fresh Off the Boat - The Complete Sixth and Final Season
    06/23 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Seventh Season
    06/23 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-Third Season (Blu-ray)
    06/30 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Seven
    07/07 - Will & Grace - The Revival - Season Three - The Farewell Season
    07/21 - Curb Your Enthusiasm - The Complete Tenth Season
    More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


    Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

    07/03 - Fri-Yay: Streaming Services Remove Episodes of Sitcoms Due to Racial Jokes; The Kominsky Method Final Season Announced
    07/02 - Netflix Renews Never Have I Ever for Season 2; Comedy Central Reviving Beavis and Butt-Head
    07/01 - Remembering Comedy Legend Carl Reiner, MeTV and Decades to Air Tributes; HBO Orders Season 11 of Curb
    06/30 - Decades 3rd Annual Rod, White & Blue: A Twilight Zone Celebration; Love in the Time of Corona Announces Cast
    06/29 - BET Picks Up 2nd Season of Twenties; Vivica A. Fox Teams Up with Krista Allen, Jackée & More for More Wrong TV Movies
    06/28 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 29, 2020)
    06/27 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Sitcoms Present and Past Deal with Current Racial Issues; Binge Watch Past Favorites on Roku Channel
    06/26 - Fri-Yay: Search Party Season 3 Thoughts; HBO Max Teams Up with Marlon Wayans
    06/25 - CNN and HLN Announce Slate, with History of Sitcom; Lil Rel Set to Host NBC Game Show
    06/24 - REELZ Announces New Specials on John Ritter, Bernie Mac, David Cassidy, Larry Hagman & More; Netflix Releases Unsolved Mysteries Trailer
    06/23 - Fox Renews Animated Comedy for 2nd Season Before Series Premiere; Cobra Kai Moving to Netflix
    06/22 - Antenna TV Summer 2020 Schedule; USA Network's Cannonball to Sneak Peek on NBC
    06/21 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 22, 2020)
    06/20 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Comedy Central Picks Up Daria Spinoff; Networks Finally Set Fall Lineup
    06/19 - Fri-Yay: Expectations on 30 Rock Remote Special; ABC Schedules Sitcom United We Fall for Summer
    06/18 - ABC Upfront 2020-21: Fall 2020 Schedule; Debra Messing Heads to the East Wing on Starz
    06/17 - NBC Upfront 2020-21: Fall 2020 Schedule; 30 Rock Returns for Upfront Special on July 16
    06/16 - NBC Cancels Indebted, Picks Up Manifest; ABC's For Life Gets 2nd Season, The Baker and The Beauty Doesn't
    06/15 - truTV Announces Tacoma FD Return and More; NBC Brings Back Freshman Drama, Cancels Two Others
    06/14 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 15, 2020)
    06/13 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Renewed for Season 2; Cops and Live PD Cancelled
    06/12 - Fri-Yay: Rick and Morty Season 4; HBO Max Orders 2nd Season of Love Life
    06/11 - Hulu Changes Premiere Dates of Two Series; ABC Encores Powerful Documentary Next Tuesday
    06/10 - Lifetime Moves Variety's Power of Women Special to June 25; Remembering Mary Pat Gleason and Peggy Pope
    06/09 - COZI TV's Leslie Jordan After Dark Week; TBS Slates Celeb Game Show with Mayim Bialik
    06/08 - TBS Presents Tournament of Laughs; More on HBO's Perry Mason Launch
    06/07 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 8, 2020)
    06/06 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Roku Adds Over 100 Linear Channels; Remembering Mary Pat Gleason and Peggy Pope
    06/05 - Fri-Yay: Space Force on Netflix Thoughts; BET+ Comedy Gets Binge Premiere
    06/04 - Antenna TV's Coach Father's Day Marathon; The CW Acquires Patrick Dempsey Thriller for Fall 2020
    06/03 - HBO Max Comedy Starts Strong; Alexa & Katie Returns in June for Final Episodes