“Fam” is Contrived Family Comedy

The first new sitcom of the winter season is “Fam” on CBS. The premise is Clem is a young woman who is recently engaged to her adoring fiancé Nick. Just as they begin to make wedding plans her ne’er-do-well out of control 16-year-old half-sister Shannon shows up and moves in with her. Clam is white and Nick is African-American but race is never brought up the entire first episode. So this isn’t “blackish” or “The Neighborhood“.

Clem is played by Nina Dobev who was most recently been seen in “The Vampire Diaries“. Her fiancé Nick is played by Tone Bell who appeared on one season of the sitcom “Whitney” but was most recently seen in “Disjointed“. The sister played by Odessa Adlon recently seen in “Nashville“. Her quirky character is the only bright spot in this otherwise ordinary sitcom. We also get a few laughs from Clem and Shannon’s father played by Gary Cole recently seen in “Chicago Fire” and as Christine Baranski’s husband on “The Good Fight“. He is a stereotypical bad father who makes all sorts of lame excuses for how he was never there when the girls were growing up. He brings a couple of laughs here and there.

The opening plot is full of sitcom clichés. The girls had told everyone that their father is dead because he’s been such an ass. Of course he shows up and spoils the lie. Also Nick accidentally eats some pot laced nuts right before a family gathering.

The laugh track is obviously fake and overdone as is usual for a new sitcom.

If you have read any of my other sitcom reviews you know that my ultimate test of any comedy is “Did it make me laugh?” I have to admit I did get a couple of chuckles out of the teenage girl but for the most part there’s nothing special about this. If you’re desperate to pick up a new sitcom on your schedule you might give it a try and see if it grows on you. But for me and my household, I’m rating this one a mild “Skip It“. Nothing special here. Move along.

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