New show: “A to Z”
When: 9:30 p.m. Thursdays on NBC
Cast: Cristin Milioti, Ben Feldman
Premise: The love story, from A to Z, of Andrew and Zelda. (Get it?)
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“How I Met Your Mother” may be over, but this show carries on the tradition of looking back at every detail of a relationship’s beginnings. And look, it even has Cristin Milioti, who played the ill-fated Mother on “Mother.”
Here, she’s Zelda, a lawyer who keeps her defenses up and wants to see solid evidence when it comes to relationships. (See what the writers did there?)
She doesn’t see a future with Andrew ( Ben Feldman, looking much more sane than when we last saw him as self-mutilating Michael Ginsberg on “Mad Men.”) Andrew works for an Internet dating company, believes in destiny when it comes to love and is prone to singing Celine Dion alone in his car.
There’s potential for this show, and Milioti and Feldman are certainly appealing. But it needs to settle down and quit hitting us upside the head with its quirky romantic-comedy cliches – the best friends of Andrew and Zelda, who love/hate each other; the A to Z framing device (the first episode is A, for Acquaintances); the voice over (from Katey Sagal) telling us that they’ve been a couple for “eight months, three weeks, five days and one hour.”
If Andrew and Zelda would just relax and let us get to know them better, we might be more willing to start a relationship with them.
Staff writer Thad Ogburn