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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Fox debuted its first new sitcom of the fall season Tuesday. “Ben and Kate” is the story of two reunited siblings – one who “grew up too fast” and the other who “never grew up” at all.

Dakota Johnson, a third-generation Hollywood actress, makes her television debut as Kate Fox. Kate is a single mother trying to make ends meet while trying to meet a man to make things a little easier.

Fortunately for Kate, she meets that man in the first episode. Unfortunately, that man is her childish older brother, Ben Fox.

Ben Fox is played by Nat Faxon, the Academy Award-winning co-writer of “The Descendants.” Ben left home a few years ago to chase his dreams and only visits when he needs something.

When Ben returns home this time, however, he realizes his sister needs more help than he does. He admirably moves in to help raise his five-year-old niece, Maddie, played by Maggie Elizabeth Jones.

This week, Ben and Maddie discover that his ex-girlfriend left him to marry another man. When Ben sees her trying on a wedding dress, he bursts into a hilarious fit of almost-curse words, has trouble making a three-point turn and enlists his sister to help him crash the wedding.

The pilot is consistently funny from beginning to end. More important, there isn’t a single character without an amusing personality, and each character contributes evenly to the comedy

Dana Fox, the show’s creator, and her real-life brother are the inspiration for most of the story lines. While this is her first time working on television, her big-screen writing credits includes “The Wedding Date,” “What Happens in Vegas” and “Couples Retreat.”

It is important to note that all of her previous works have received terrible reviews from critics despite success at the box office. If history truly does repeat itself, expect “Ben and Kate” to be a fan favorite, regardless of what the critics have to say.

“Ben and Kate" airs Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m. on Fox.

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